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Dr Carla Washbourne
Shropshire House (4th Floor)
Capper Street
Tel: +44 (0)20 3108 9428
  • Lecturer
  • STEaPP
  • Faculty of Engineering Science
UCL Principal Supervisor

Carla completed an MSc in Engineering Geology and PhD in Geosciences (Newcastle University), investigating the potential for engineering soils to act as carbon sinks, promoting carbon capture and storage. This work, and her role as a named researcher on EPSRC Impact Award grants designed to engage stakeholder groups, developed her interest in policy and its application to the earth and environmental sciences.

She has worked in the Parliamentary Office of Science and Technology as a Physical Sciences, IT and Communications Adviser and undertaken policy internships within the Scottish Parliament Information Centre (SPICe) (January - March 2013) and environmental regeneration charity Groundwork North East (July - August 2010) where she investigated the potential for temporary use of vacant urban land, engaging with stakeholders in industry, local government and the third sector. 

Carla is driven by a desire to encourage engagement between researchers and a range of interest groups, and is very interested in public perceptions of science. She has worked on a broad range of science communication projects, including hosting and delivering public lectures, acting as the founding co-editor of Newcastle University’s student-led science magazine {react} and developing a particular passion for research-based stand-up comedy, performing throughout the UK and at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival in 2013 and 2014.

Research Summary

Carla is an interdisciplinary researcher and practitioner working at the interface of science and public policy. Her work seeks to understand how decision-making and planning in urban settings is influenced by prevailing knowledge systems, centred on urban environment and sustainability topics. Current projects include: understanding the knowledge and skill base for urban green space planning and policy, and investigating the role of urban observatories for sustainable development in contemporary urban knowledge systems.

Carla is a Lecturer in Environmental Science and Policy at UCL, in the department of Science, Technology, Engineering and Public Policy (STEaPP). She is a member of the UCL Urban Innovation and Policy Laboratory and Co-Director (Green Infrastructure) of the UCL Engineering Exchange, which works to proactively match local community needs with UCL research expertise. She is a Research Associate at the Gauteng City-Region Observatory (GCRO), Johannesburg.

Carla has previously worked in the UK Parliamentary Office of Science and Technology as a Physical Sciences Advisor and in the Scottish Parliament Information Centre, engaging directly with legislative decision-makers, developing expertise and a personal interest in science advice and science communication for policy. 

Teaching Summary

Carla completed her Professional Certificate in Teaching and Learning in Higher and Professional Education in 2015 (UCL Institute of Education) and has a passion for developing high-quality, engaging educational experiences. As well as contributing to the general development of UCL STEaPP’s education programme, and professional teaching roles, specific responsibilities include:

Director of Master's of Public Administration (MPA) Programmes (2018-)

Master's of Public Administration (MPA) Programmes Coordinator (2016-17)

Module lead: PG Science Communication for Policy (2015-2018), UG Introduction to Science, Engineering and Public Policy (2016-18)

Module co-lead: PG Sustainable Infrastructure and Public Policy (2019-), PG Integrated Analysis of Socio-Technical Systems (now Evidence for Decision-Making) (2014-16)

Cohort co-lead: How to Change the World (2014-19) 

MAR-2016 Lecturer in Environmental Science and Policy Science, Technology, Engineering and Public Policy UCL, United Kingdom
OCT-2013 – MAR-2016 Provost Fellow and Lecturer (Temporary) Science, Technology, Engineering and Public Policy UCL, United Kingdom
Academic Background
2015   Postgraduate Certificate University College London
2014   Doctor of Philosophy Newcastle University
2009   Master of Science Newcastle University
2006   Bachelor of Science (Honours) University of Durham
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