Department of
Architecture and Built Environment

Image of Florian Wiedmann

Florian Wiedmann

Assistant Professor, Faculty of Engineering



After his studies in architecture and urban design at TU Dresden and University of Stuttgart, Dr Wiedmann completed his PhD at the urban planning institute of the University of Stuttgart.

In the following years, he was engaged at Albert Speer + Partner (AS+P) in Frankfurt am Main, where he worked on projects in Munich, such as the urban design parameters for the new Siemens Headquarters in the historic center and high-density housing. He also participated in the development of a master plan for a satellite city centre for 600,000 new inhabitants in metro Cairo.

In 2011, he joined an international research collaboration between the Technical University of Munich and Qatar University as a post-doc and project director. Over three years, during which he lived in Doha, Qatar, he coordinated an interdisciplinary and international team and explored new approaches to identify the various interdependencies between emerging knowledge economies and urban transformation in the Global South.

After successfully acquiring a new research project from the Qatar National Research Fund in 2015, he joined the University of Strathclyde (Department of Architecture) in Glasgow, where he studied the effects of rapid migration processes on housing and urbanism in the Middle East. This research effort resulted in his latest book publication: 'Building Migrant Cities in the Gulf - Urban Transformation in the Middle East'.

In parallel to his research projects, he has been engaged as external lecturer and examiner of undergraduate and postgraduate courses at Frankfurt University of Applied Sciences, German University in Cairo as well as Münster University of Applied Sciences and HFT Stuttgart since 2013.

In March 2019 he joined the University of Nottingham and its Department of Architecture and Built Environment as Assistant Professor. Dr Wiedmann is apart of the Human Factors Research Group where he is focusing on Human Factors and Spatial Design and at the Faculty of Engineering and the university-wide Energy Institute where he is contributing to the Communities and Built Environment-challenge by investigating new approaches of higher density housing schemes and their impact on spatial practice.

Expertise Summary

Florian Wiedmann is specialized in investigating spatial practices from an international and interdisciplinary perspective who has been working in research, design practice and teaching since 2006. His research frameworks and methodologies follow an integrated approach and are rooted in space production theories set in juxtaposition to a contemporary understanding of sustainable development. His involvement in interdisciplinary projects and courses in four different countries made it possible for him to gain in-depth experience in investigating the complex relationship between people and places.

The main focus of his research can be found in exploring new trends and forms of spatial practices via integrating qualitative and quantitative methods, including Space Syntax, behavioural mapping, and strategic observations as well as interviews to support both design studios and practice for a more sustainable and energy-efficient built environment. He has been supervising following PhD topics:

- Spatial practices in emerging cities: Worldwide new cities have been built with very small insights about the resulting spatial practices of inhabitants and economies. Investigating these behavioral patterns is crucial to scientifically discuss future opportunities and threats to inform design and planning practice.

- Spatial practices in mass housing schemes: Worldwide housing is often supplied in high densities and in various typologies to accommodate medium and lower income communities. The spatial practices of these communities are important indicators of the success of certain design approaches. Designing spaces for high densities will remain a key challenge to reduce energy consumption worldwide.

- Spatial practices of creative economies in mega cities: The on-going digitalisation has enabled a new scale of creative economies to emerge and compete. Mega cities heavily rely on integrating those new economies to sustain their social and environmental resilience - but these economies are being challenged to find suitable and connected places for their development.

- Spatial practices affected by historic patterns and geometry: The role of geometry in spatial practices is often underestimated in current urban design and planning - but historic precedents show the dominant role of organising spatial practices via calculated grid and block sizes which still have an impact on urbanism today.

- Learning design by reflecting spatial practices: Architectural and urban design are often taught in a studio setting without learning new tools and approaches to reflect on caused spatial practices. Thus, new approaches in learning design need to be investigated in an increasingly digitalised environment.

Selected Publications


Past Research

Following three research grants I have acquired and/or coordinated since 2011:

1. Mobility, Displacement, and Forced Migration in the Middle East (2017)

Research collaboration with Georgetown University Qatar. Client: Georgetown University. Budget: $17,270. Duration: 12 months.

2. Investigating Housing Typologies in Multicultural Societies in the Gulf Region (2015 - 2018)

Research collaboration between Qatar University and University of Strathclyde. Client: Qatar National Research Fund. Grant ID: NPRP No.: 7 - 960 - 5 - 135. Total budget: $833,459. Duration: 3 years.

This research projects focuses on rapid migration processes and housing transformation in the Global South with a specific focus on the Gulf region. Housing design and strategies need to cope with increasing challenges to supply hundreds of thousands of new inhabitants with sufficient, attractive and affordable accommodation. This project follows a multi-layered and interdisciplinary approach to investigate the various recent mechanisms in the development of new settlements. The main case studies included Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Doha and Manama due to their extensive growth in recent years.

3. Urban Qualities in Emerging Knowledge Economies (2011 - 2014)

Research collaboration between Qatar University and TU Munich. Client: Qatar National Research Fund. Grant ID: NPRP No.: 9 - 1083 - 6 - 023. Total budget: $974,348. Duration: 3 years.

The main objective of this research project was to investigate new knowledge economies and their role in establishing urban qualities in fast-growing cities. Therefore, the project focused on a new methodological approach for investigating the interdependencies between economic diversification and urban transformation. The project combined interlocking network analyses with Space Syntax studies and behavioral mapping.

Department of Architecture and Built Environment

The University of Nottingham
University Park
Nottingham, NG7 2RD

telephone: +44 (0) 115 95 14184