Associate Professor/Director of Planning and Real Estate

+44 (0) 131 451 4616
Room 1.24
Edwin Chadwick Building
Heriot-Watt University
EH14 4AS
United Kingdom
Harry Smith
  • Human settlements in the rapidly urbanising world, mainly looking at planning and housing (with a particular focus on Latin America), community empowerment, participatory processes and user involvement in the production of the built environment
  • Urban place-making and place-keeping, including waterfront (re)development, partnership approaches to the design and long-term maintenance of open space, and the impact of globalisation on historic centres
  • Architectural design, with a focus on the interrelationship between process and product.
Selected publications
  1. The Right to the City as a Common Good: Between Social Politics and Urban Planning (co-edited with Boniburini, I, Moretto, L & Le Maire, J), Cahiers de la Cambre, Brussels, 2011.
  2. Waterfront Regeneration: Experiences in City-Building (co-edited with Garcia-Ferrari, S), Earthscan, 2011.
  3. “Transformaciones, conflictos e identidades en el Centro Histórico de Salvador de Bahia” (with Luque-Azcona, E), Revista Complutense de Historia de America, 36, 291-315, 2010.
  4. “On locational preferences for privacy in hospital wards” (with Alalouch, C & Aspinall, P), Facilities, 27(3/4), 88-106, 2009.
  5. Planning and Housing in the Rapidly Urbanizing World (co-authored with Jenkins, P, and Wang, Y P), Routledge, 2007.
  6. “Research in UK architecture schools – an institutional perspective” (with Jenkins, P & Forsyth, L), Architectural Research Quarterly, 9(1), 33-43, 2006.
  7. “Collaborative approaches to knowledge development: action research in urban land issues in Mozambique and Angola” (with Jenkins, P), International Development Planning Review, 26(1), 25-45, 2004.
  8. “Costa Rica's Triangle of Solidarity: can government-led spaces for negotiation enhance the involvement of civil society in governance?”, Environment & Urbanization, 16(1), 63-77, 2004.
  9. “Spaces of negotiation in low-income housing in San José, Costa Rica: A comparison of spaces of negotiation in Rincón Grande de Pavas”, International Development Planning Review, 25(2), 169-193, 2003.
  10. “Housing networks in San José, Costa Rica”, Habitat International, 27(1), 83-105, 2003.
  11. “An institutional approach to analysis of state capacity in housing systems in the developing world: case studies in South Africa and Costa Rica” (with Jenkins, P), Housing Studies, 16(4), 485-507, 2001.
  12. Urban Development & Civil Society: The Role of Communities in Sustainable Cities (co-edited with Carley, M, and Jenkins, P), Earthscan, 2001.
  • Trained as an Architect at the Universidad Politecnica de Valencia (1990), Spain, where I worked in private practice.
  • MSc in Urban & Regional Planning (Developing Countries) in 1996 (Dissertation was on Curitiba, Brazil), followed by a PhD in Planning and Housing focused on low-income housing in Costa Rica in 2000, both at Edinburgh College of Art/Heriot-Watt University.
  • Worked in the private sector as an architect and planner in Edinburgh between 1996 and 2000.
  • Central Development Officer at Community Self-Build Scotland, Glasgow, 2000/01.
  • Researcher at the School of Planning & Housing, Edinburgh College of Art (1999/2000 and 2001/02), and then at the School of the Built Environment, Heriot-Watt University (2002/04), working on a range of projects including participatory planning in the UK, Europe and Latin America; access to land for housing in peri-urban areas in Africa; and housing needs of minority ethnic communities, diversity, green belts and permitted development in the UK.
  • Since 2004, Lecturer at the School of the Built Environment, becoming Senior Lecturer in 2010. In this period my research interests broadened from institutional and governance issues in planning and housing to physical design, including: rental housing in Africa; waterfront redevelopment and urban place-making and place-making in Europe and worldwide; the impact of globalisation on historic centres in Latin America and Europe; housing and school building design; and architectural research in academia and practice. 
  • From 2006 to 2010 I was co-coordinator of the Network-Association of European Researchers on Urbanisation in the South (N-AERUS), contributing to the organisation of annual conferences in London, Edinburgh, Rotterdam and Brussels. 
  • Since 2007, Member of the Royal Town Planning Institute.
  • Since 2010, Director of the Centre for Environment & Human Settlements, at the School of the Built Environment.