The AA School’s PhD programme combines advanced research with a broader educational agenda, preparing graduates for practice in global academic and professional environments. Current doctoral research encompasses the topics of the school’s postgraduate programmes in architectural theory and history, architectural urbanism, emergent technologies and design, and sustainable environmental design. Within each of these strands candidates can engage in design-led research (PhD in Architectural Design) or follow the traditional route of the text-based dissertation. Across the programme’s streams, shared research issues are explored through specialist groups, seminars and other events in and outside of the school. This year, several of the programme’s PhD candidates contributed to conferences and publications in the UK and abroad. ‘A Day on the Grid’ was a public event organised by Alexandra Vougia, Costandis Kizis and Gabriela García de Cortázar Galleguillos, held in early May. The programme’s current PhD candidates and recent graduates participated, as well as teaching staff and students from across the school. The day tackled the issue of the grid from nine angles, each examined by two papers: ‘prologue’, Aldo Urbinati; ‘urban’, Alexandra Vougia and Ross Adams; ‘maps’, Gabriela García de Cortázar Galleguillos and Emmanouil Stavrakakis; ‘drawing’, Alison Moffett and Nerma Cridge; ‘plan’, Alejandra Celedon and Costandis Kizis; ‘intermission’, Merve Anil and Eleanor Dodman; ‘coordinates’, Ryan Dillon and Arturo Revilla; ‘graph’, Valeria Guzman and Jingming Wu; ‘epilogue’, Doreen Bernath; ‘discussion’, Pier Vittorio Aureli, Mark Campbell and Marina Lathouri.
Pier Vittorio Aureli
Vida Norouz Borazjani
Identity Disinterred: The Uses and Abuses of a Past in Architectural Representation of a Present
Supervisor: Marina Lathouri, Vida Norouz Borazjani
This thesis focuses on the development of the historicist understanding of collective identity in the architecture of Iran since the modernisation of the country in the 1920s. It aims to clarify the relationship between the use of history and the expres¬sion of national and cultural identities by focusing on the development of the archi¬tectural discipline – its politics, design, teaching, theory and historiography in Iran and the influence of the west. The thesis ultimately aims to construct a conceptu¬al platform for critically assessing such representations of identity in contemporary architecture and revisits the almost ignored value of the contemporary as a means of expressing a collective identity.
Niloofar started architectural studies in 2003 in Iran where she particularly became interested in history of the discipline. In 2009 she received her Master’s degree in Histories and Theories of Architecture from Architectural Association. She then enrolled again at the AA for the PhD course in 2011. As well as her research, she works on architectural projects in Iran.