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About me

Samir Pandya is an architect and Assistant Head of the School of Architecture and Cities, University of Westminster (London), where he is also Director of International and Strategic Lead for Equality, Diversity & Inclusion. He has designed a wide range of award-winning buildings in practice, and has been a Visiting Professor at APIED School of Architecture, Anand (India), an External Examiner at the University of Johannesburg (South Africa), and a PhD Co-Supervisor at the Università Iuav di Venezia, (Italy). His committee memberships and chairships have included the Society of Black Architects (Executive Committee), RIBA Education Committee (Member) and Architects for Change (Chair).  He is currently an External PhD Supervisor at the University of Cyprus, and an External Examiner at the University of Dundee (Scotland). He has served on numerous juries and awards, including for the National Association of Students of Architecture in India, and the 2018 RIBA Annie Spink Award for Excellence in Architectural Education.  In addition to being Co-Editor of National Identities: Critical Inquiry into Nationhood, Politics & Culture (Taylor & Francis), he is an Editorial Board member for FOLIO (Journal of Contemporary African Architecture) and Veranda, the peer-reviewed journal of Sushant School of Art & Architecture, Delhi (India). He is also on the Academic Advisory Board for the pioneering African Futures Institute, Accra (Ghana).  

Teaching

During his time in the School, Samir has taught across many levels (within RIBA/ARB Parts 1, 2 and 3) as well as the design-led MA Architecture, Cultural Identity and Globalisation (MACIG), a course which he co-wrote with Lesley Lokko.  His teaching activity has cut across design, cultural context, history & theory and professional studies.  After stepping down as MACIG Course Leader, he continues to teach on it though leading the interdisciplinary module 'Ethnographic Ways of Knowing'.  In addition to having been Course Leader for MACIG, he has also been Course Leader for the MArch (RIBA/ARB Part 2).  He also continues to lead the MArch professional studies module 'Critical Practice' which equips students with the ability to reflect, understand and critique the links between themselves, the broader frameworks that regulate architects, and the socio-cultural settings within which these frameworks are negotiated.  He is also an active and experienced PhD Supervisor (for both Traditional and 'By Design' mode, and with a number winning prestigious international research awards), supervising candidates exploring questions of architecture, identity, globalisation, postcolonial theory, and often involving innovative methodologies including mapping, performance and drawing.

Research

Samir's published scholarship focuses on the relationship between architecture and identity, examining questions relating to design, representation and power.  His methodology utilises concepts and analytical frameworks drawn from postcolonial theory.

His professional and industry research to date for clients such as Royal Holloway (University of London), the UK Government Department for Innovation, Universities & Skills, the RIBA, CABE, Centre for Education in the Built Environment (CEBE), and the Equality & Human Rights Commission, relate to the development of architectural education and practice with a focus on diversity, cultural context, and design studio culture.  

Publications

For details of all my research outputs, visit my WestminsterResearch profile.