I am Reader in Architecture and Environmental Design at the School of Architecture and Cities of the University of Westminster. I joined the University in September 2013 to set up and lead a MSc in Architecture and Environmental Design which has been running since Sep 2014. I have also written and taken to internal validation a BSc in Architecture and Environmental Design. Prior to 2013, I taught Environmental Design as a Senior Lecturer at the Architectural Association in the MSc and MArch courses in Sustainable Environmental Design. Previously, I was a Research Fellow at the Department of Built Environment, University of Nottingham (2005-10), working on several European funded research projects. My experience in environmental design consultancy included the role of Senior Sustainability Consultant at WSP Environmental and at Brian Ford & Associates (1998-2003). I completed my postgraduate studies in Environmental Design in the UK, with a MSc in ‘Architecture, Energy and Sustainability’ from London Metropolitan University (1999). I subsequently obtained a PhD degree from the Architectural Association on the application of passive evaporative cooling using porous ceramic in residential buildings (2002-2005). In 1998 I obtained a BSc and Diploma Certificate in Architecture from the University ‘Federico II’ of Naples, Italy. I am the co-author of The Architecture of Natural Cooling, published in 2020 by Routledge.
Current research interests
I have over 20 years of experience in environmental design research and consultancy. I have authored two key text books, technical reports and written over 40 papers which have been published in edited books and peer reviewed publications. I have editorial experience of journals and books and I have given numerous presentations at academic and professional international conferences. I am on the editorial board of the journals: Sustainability and TAD, and on the scientific and organising committee of several international symposia and conferences. I am very active in the international academic research community; I have initiated research collaborations with several major universities in the world and have led major EU funded research projects. I have collaborated with universities, architects and engineers in Europe, India, China and South America.
My research specialisation is in the field of environmental design, natural ventilation and passive cooling. Specifically, I have played a major role in developing methodologies for the quantification of the performance of passive cooling through porous ceramic and the post occupancy evaluation of buildings employing innovative natural cooling methods. In July 2019 my expertise was sought as an invited expert for the feasibility study of natural ventilation retrofit to the temporary House of Parliament in Whitehall, London. I am the co-author of the book on The Architecture of Natural Cooling, published by Routledge (2020). I am also an invited topic editor for the journal of Sustainability. I am guest currently editing the special issue on "Sustainability in Architectural Education: Legacy and Experimentation"
Another area of my research specialisation relates to the quantification of the wider impact of environmental design strategies in heritage sites and also the mapping of their climatic applicability at regional and national scale. This work, carried out in collaboration with international visiting scholars, has been presented in articles and conference papers and has proved very influential, being cited in many international publications on geo-climatic studies.
I am currently co-investigator of a QHT funded cross-disciplinary research on links between the built environment and health and wellbeing. The relationship between outdoor air quality, vitamin D deficiency and the spread of Covid-19 is the subject of a seed-fund research project that I am conducting with colleagues from the department of Life Sciences and which is due for completion in July 2021.
I am part of the Human Comfort Research group.
I am an Associate member of the Passive Low Energy Architecture (PLEA) Committee;
Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy; Honorary Member of Italian Institute of Bio-Architecture (INBAR); Founder and Co-Chair of Women of Westminster Network (2019-20). I am a peer reviewer evaluator for the EPSRC, Syracuse University, NY, USA, the Architectural Science Review Journal, Wiley International, Routledge, Elsevier and MDPI.