Institutional Research Information Service
UCL Logo
Please report any queries concerning the funding data grouped in the sections named "Externally Awarded" or "Internally Disbursed" (shown on the profile page) to your Research Finance Administrator. Your can find your Research Finance Administrator at https://www.ucl.ac.uk/finance/research/rs-contacts.php by entering your department
Please report any queries concerning the student data shown on the profile page to:

Email: portico-services@ucl.ac.uk

Help Desk: http://www.ucl.ac.uk/ras/portico/helpdesk
 More search options
Dr Catalina Turcu
Room 528
Central House, 14 Upper Woburn Place
  • Senior Lecturer
  • The Bartlett School of Planning
  • Faculty of the Built Environment

I am a Senior Lecturer/ Associate Professor in Sustainable Development and Planning, and Programme Director for the MSc in Sustainable Urbanism. I have a background in public policy and sustainability (PhD, LSE 2010), international housing and social change (MSc Dist, LSE 2001), urbanism (MA Dist, UAUIM 1999) and architecture (BArch DipARch, UAUIM 1998). Prior to joining the academia in the UK, I worked as an architect and urban designer (Farells Architects, Llewelyn Daies Yeang, Levitt Bernstein Associates) and environmental development officer (Affinity Housing Group) in London. Before that, I had a lectureship position at UAUIM in Bucharest, where I also established my own architectural practice (Zona Architects). I have 15 years of joint academic and professional experience and I am registered with the Architects Registration Board (ARB, UK) and Order of Romanian Architects (OAR, Romania), and a member of the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA, UK).

Research Summary
Unique researcher ID (ORCID): 0000-0003-2663-2586


My reserach interests can be broadly located within the area of 'urban studies' at the interface between social and institutional aspects of urban sustainability. I am particularly interested in social sustainability, housing, energy, indicators and, more recently, pro-environmental behaviour. I have also undertaken research and work in the following areas:

  • sustainable development: measurement, sustainable communities, healthy cities, local sustainability;
  • energy: urban energy systems, energy efficiency,  demand mamagement, decentralised energy, energy scenarios;
  • housing: housing retrofit, low demand housing, unpopular estates, social housing, housing design and typology;
  • urban regeneration: sustainable urban regeneration; area deprivation, urban poverty, neighbourhood renewal, area based initiatives;
  • design: urban design, emvironmental masterplanning; sustainable development masterplans/ visions;
  • policy analysis: housing, environmental, energy, planning.


My research is inter-disciplibary and I have worked with economists, engineers, architects, political scientists, psychologists and human geographers. I am also interested in policy and industry applications of academic research and worked with cities and built environment professional bodies. I employ both quantitative and qualitative methods in my research, and conceptually I draw on social, political and planning theory.


I currently work on four projects:

  • Ee-eE Project (Equal energy-efficiency Europe), which looks at the unequal spatial distribution and outcomes of energy efficiency in buildings in Europe and, particularly, in East Europe;
  • PostCURE Network (Post Crisis Urban Responses in Europe), which investigates post-crisis social and institutional innovation in Europe;
  • Behaviour by Design/ Design by Behaviour, a Routledge (text) book to be published in 2018; and
  • Neighbourhoods through Change 2007-2017. An intimate story of urban housing, deprivation and sustainability in England, an Oxford University Press (research) book to be published in 2019.  

I organise conference tracks for ENHR (European Network for Housing Research), NESS (Nordic Environmental and Social Sciences) and EURA (European Urban Research Association). I am a Research Evaluator with FORMAS (Swedish Research Council).

Teaching Summary

I currently teach at the postgraduade level, but I have also taught at the undergraduate level. I convene the following modules at UCL:

  • Sustainable Urban Development: Key Themes (7.5 ECTS)
  • Sustainable Urban Development: Projects (7.5 ECTS)
  • Personal Researech: SU Major Projects (30 ECTS)

I contribute/ have contributed lectures on Governance for Urban Sustainability: Key Debates; Green Futures; and Making cities: the production of the built environment. In the past, I taught at the London School of Economics on Poverty, Social exclusion and Social Change; and at UAUIM in Bucharest on Urban & Planning Policy, and Public Administration & Urban Management. I have also guest lectured at SNU (South Korea), KTH (Sweden), Gothenburg University (Sweden), TU Delft (the Neatherlands) and Columbia University (USA).

01-OCT-2017 Senior Lecturer Bartlett School of Planning Universitry College London, United Kingdom
01-JAN-2016 – 01-JAN-2019 Academic External Examiner, MSc Sustainable Planning School of Life and Medical Sciences University of Hertforshire, United Kingdom
01-SEP-2015 – 01-SEP-2019 Academic External Examiner, BSc and MSc Urban Studies Department of Urbanism University of Architecture and Urbanism Bucharest, Romania
01-OCT-2012 Lecturer Bartlett School of Planning University College London, United Kingdom
01-OCT-2012 Programme Director, MSc Sustainable Urbanism Bartlett School of Planning University College London, United Kingdom
01-SEP-2007 – 01-SEP-2010 Part-time Teaching Fellow Social Policy London School of Economics, United Kingdom
01-SEP-1998 – 01-SEP-2000 Lecturer Technical and Building Studies University of Architecture Bucharest (UAUIM), Romania
Academic Background
2014 PGCLTHE Postgraduate Certificate in Learning and Teaching in Higher Education – Planning (Urban, Rural and Regional) University College London
2010 PhD Doctor of Philosophy – Social and Political Sciences London School of Economics and Political Science
2001 MSc Master of Science – Housing London School of Economics and Political Science
1999 MAST Master – Architecture and Urbanism Universitatea din Bucuresti
1996 DipArch Diploma of Architecture – Architecture Universitatea din Bucuresti
1993 B.Arch Bachelor of Architecture – Architecture Universitatea din Bucuresti
Please report any queries concerning the data shown on this page to https://www.ucl.ac.uk/hr/helpdesk/helpdesk_web_form.php
University College London - Gower Street - London - WC1E 6BT Tel:+44 (0)20 7679 2000

© UCL 1999–2011

Search by