RIBA President's Awards for Research

The RIBA's annual research awards exist to promote the innovation and insight that emerge from excellent research. The awards acknowledge and encourage fresh and strategic thinking in architectural research for the benefit of the profession as a whole.

Projects are judged by a distinguished panel of experts in four categories:

  • Master's degree thesis

  • PhD thesis

  • University-led research

  • Practice-led research


The winners will receive their awards in December at the RIBA Presidents Medals ceremony at 66 Portland Place, London W1. 

President's Awards for Research 2014 shortlists

The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) has announced the shortlist for the four categories of the President’s Awards for Research 2014, which are as follows:

RIBA President's Award for Outstanding Master's Degree Thesis

  • Juan Montoliu Hernandez of the Architectural Association School of Architecture: CRISIS Architecture: Colonizing existing concrete structures.
  • Carlo Menon of University College London: The missing decade? Architectural magazines of the 1990s.
  • Stephen Gage of the University of Cambridge: Repurposed pasts? Architecture and identity in the Gothic revival university.
  • Xiang Ren of the University of Sheffield: Stereotomics, tectonics and material presence: studies of the vernacular architecture of Hui Prefecture of China.

RIBA President's Award for Outstanding PhD Thesis

  • Bo Tang of London Metropolitan University: Negotiating shared spaces in informal peri-urban settlements in North India: collaborative architectural making as a catalyst for civic empowerment and social change.
  • Emma Cheatle of University College London: Part-architecture: the Maison de Verre Through the Large Glass.
  • Tom Bridgen of the University of Newcastle: The protected vista: an intellectual and cultural history, as seen from Richmond Hill.

RIBA President's Awards for Outstanding University-located Research

  • Barbara Penner of University College London: Bathroom.
  • Flora Samuel, Liam Foster and Fionn Stevenson of the University of Sheffield, Fiona McLachlan of the University of Edinburgh and Steven Spier of the University of Kingston: Home improvements.
  • Jian Kang, Hongseok Yang, Yuliya Smyrnowa and Chris Cheal of the University of Sheffield: Greening buildings for noise control.
  • Adam Sharr of the University of Newcastle and Stephen Thornton of the University of Cardiff: Demolishing Whitehall: Leslie Martin, Harold Wilson and the architecture of white heat.
  • Maurice Mitchell of London Metropolitan University and Bo Tang and Shamoon Patwari of Cass Projects: The architecture of three Freetown neighbourhoods: documenting changing city topographies 2008-2013.
  • Ben Campkin of University College London: Remaking London: decline and regeneration in urban culture.

RIBA President's Awards for Outstanding Practice-located Research

  • Mike Tonkin and Anna Liu of Tonkin Liu: Shell Lace Structure.
  • Robert Barker and Richard Coutts of Baca Architects et al.: The Climate Adaptive Neighbourhoods (CAN) project.
  • Michael Stacey, Laura Gaskell, Jenny Grewcock and Ben Stanforth of Michael Stacey Architects: Prototyping Architecture.

The winners will be announced in October and will receive their awards in December at the RIBA Presidents Medals ceremony. 

Winners for the President's Awards for Research 2013 

If you have any queries about the awards, please email research@riba.org 
or call 020 7307 3679.

Judges 2014

The judges in 2014 will be:

  • Ruth Morrow (Chair) - Queens University Belfast
  • Gerry Adler - Kent School of Architecture
  • Cany Ash - Ash Sakula
  • Barnabas Calder - University of Liverpool
  • Soraya Khan - Theis and Khan
  • Cindy Walters - Walters and Cohen
  • Andrew Waugh - Waugh Thistleton
  • Daisy Froud - Architects of Change
  • Simon Foxell - The Architects Practice
  • Matthew Barac - London South Bank University
  • Neil Jackson - University of Liverpool
  • Bob Sheil - Bartlett School of Architecture

Adam Sharr of the University of Newcastle is taking a sabbatical from the pnel in 2014 in order to enter work for the Awards.

Technical expertise is provided, where necessary by the Building Research Establishment.

The process is observed by Peter Gibbs-Kennet on behalf of the RIBA Research and Innovation Group.

Conflict of interest procedures

  • Judges declare their conflicts of interest as soon as the list of awards' candidates is circulated. 

  • Judges are required to leave the room during the assessment of work where there is a conflict of interest.

  • Judges must not provide supporting statements for submissions to the RIBA President's Awards for Research.

  • Judges cannot make submissions for the RIBA President's Awards for Research.

  • At each stage of assessment the relevant materials are inspected by at least two impartial judges.

  • Where the Chair is involved in a conflict of interest, another member of the judging panel acts as Deputy Chair.

Cases of conflict of interest arise:

  • For PhD Award: where the judge has been involved in the supervision of and/or examination of the PhD.

  • For University-led Awards: where the judge has been involved as a member of the research team.

  • For Professional Practice-led Awards: where the judge has been involved in any way in the research project submitted.

The following circumstances will be considered on a case-by-case basis, depending on the level of involvement or familiarity with the research:

  • For the PhD and University-led Research Awards: where the submission is from the higher education institute in which the judge is currently, or has recently been, or will soon be, a member of staff (this is usually considered a conflict of interest).

  • For the University-led Research Awards: where the judge has been a nominated peer reviewer of the research submission for a research council or related body.

  • For Professional Practice-led Research Awards: where the judge has a business connection with the submitting practice (this is usually considered a conflict of interest).

  • For any of the four awards: where a professional or personal relationship may impede the judge's impartiality (this is usually considered a conflict of interest).

×