If you made any changes in Pure these will be visible here soon.

Personal profile

Research interests

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.


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.

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics where Harry Smith is active. These topic labels come from the works of this person. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Co Author Network Recent external collaboration on country level. Dive into details by clicking on the dots.

Research Output

Open Access
  • 16 Downloads (Pure)

    Toward negotiated mitigation of landslide risks in informal settlements: Reflections from a pilot experience in Medellín, Colombia

    Smith, H., Coupe, F., Garcia Ferrari, S., Rivera, H. & Castro Mera, W. E., 27 Feb 2020, In : Ecology and Society. 25, 1, 13 p., 19.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    Open Access
  • 13 Downloads (Pure)

    Developing Age-Friendly Cities and Communities: Experiences from the UK , Brazil and India

    Woolrych, R., Sixsmith, J., Menezes, D., Fisher, J., Murray, M., Lawthom, R., Smith, H. & Garcia-Ferrari, S., 28 Aug 2019.

    Research output: Contribution to conferencePaper

  • La lucha por la vivienda en españa (2009-2019): Desde la calle a las instituciones

    Translated title of the contribution: The struggle for housing in Spain (2009-2019): From the street to the institutionsde Andrés, E. Á. & Smith, H., 1 Nov 2019, In : Revista INVI. 34, 97, p. 179-203 25 p.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    Open Access
  • 4 Downloads (Pure)

    Place-Making with Older Adults (PLACE-AGE). Towards Age-Friendly Cities and Communities: Policy and Practice Guidelines and Recommendations

    Woolrych, R., Portella, A., Sixsmith, J., Smith, H., Soledad Garcia Ferrari, M., Makita, M., Menezes, D., Fisher, J., Lawthom, R., Murray, M., Crane de Narvaez, S. & Goodman, N., 2019

    Research output: Book/ReportCommissioned report

    Open Access