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Researcher biography

I am Senior Lecturer in urban planning (tenured/confirmed in 2017). I joined UQ in 2015 upon completing my postdoctoral residency in the Netherlands. My research interests encompass built environment topics (urban design, transport, and housing) in both the Global North and South. I completed graduate studies in the US and Belgium, in addition to my native Albania. I have held guest teaching and/or research positions in Austria, Chile, and Italy, and been a consultant for various UN agencies including the UNDP, UNESCAP, and UN Habitat. Prior to joining academia, I worked in urban design and planning in California. My latest book is Trophy cities: A feminist perspective on new capitals (Edward Elgar, 2021). In addition to academic research, I publish broadly in non academic outlets, including in The Conversation, and regularly give interviews on national and international media.

For a full list of publications, click the 'Publications' tab, which displays results live from UQ eSpace. To obtain the full text of the publications, visit the following pages:

Editorial Boards

Journal of Transport Geography (since 2022)

Transportation Research Part A: Policy and Practice (since 2021)

Journal of Planning Education and Research (since 2019)

Australian Planner (since 2022)



  • Postdoctoral Residency, Delft University of Technology, Faculty of Architecture and the Built Environment, Delft, the Netherlands. 2012-2014.
  • PhD in Urban Planning, Polytechnic University of Tirana, Faculty of Architecture and Urban Planning, Tirana, Albania. 2007-2010.
  • Visiting PhD student, University of California at Los Angeles, Luskin School of Public Affairs, Los Angeles, Ca, USA. 2009.
  • Master in Urban Planning, University of Cincinnati, College of Design, Art, Architecture, and Planning, Cincinnati, Oh, USA. Full scholarship award. 2003-2005.
  • Visiting Master student, Catholic University of Leuven, Faculty of Architecture (St Lucas), Brussels, Belgium. Recipient of US government FIPSE grant. 2004.
  • Professional Degree in Architecture, Polytechnic University of Tirana, Faculty of Architecture and Urban Planning, Tirana, Albania. 1998-2003.


Funded Projects*

  • 2022. Project: Minimising corruption in urban planning and development: What can the Balkans learn from Scandinavia? UQ Promoting Women Fellowship (PWF) Sole grant writer ($12,500).

  • 2022. Project: We don’t know where to go or how to get there: Mapping out the mobility needs for tourists in urban destinations. UQ BEL Connect Grant. Grant co-writer ($18,500).

  • 2021-2022. Project: The impact of Covid-19 on Brisbane / Southeast Queensland. UQ Faculty of Science COVID Research Recovery Fund. Lead grant writer ($50,000).

  • 2021-2022. Project: Bikeability for Transportation: Tools and Data for Research and Practice. AURIN grant. Grant co-writer ($135,600).

  • 2017-2020. Project: Reclaiming lost ground: Transitions of mobility and parking. Australian Research Council, Linkage grant. Grant co-writer ($358,000).

  • 2016. Project: Planning Tiger Cub City-Regions: Role Models and Policy Transfers in Sustainable Transport in Southeast Asia. Project based in Indonesia,the Philippines, Malaysia, and Thailand. UQ Early Career Researcher grant. Sole grant writer ($26,150).

  • 2015-2017. Project: Urban planning issues in planned capital cities in seven countries: Burma, India, Korea, Kazakhstan, Nigeria, Brazil, and Australia. UQ Startup grant. Sole grant writer ($15,000).

  • 2014-2015. Project: Informal Housing in the Balkans. Grant from: Van Eesteren-Fluck & Van Lohuizen Stichting (EFL) Foundation, The Netherlands. Sole grant writer (€10,000).

*For a list of grants administered at UQ, see Grants.


Research Students (PhD and MPhil)*

  1. Els Leclercq [completed, associate]
  2. Roja Gholamhosseini [completed, principal]
  3. Annie McCabe [completed, principal]
  4. Renuka Bhoge [completed, principal]
  5. Deti Kusmalawati [completed, associate]
  6. Fahimeh Khalaj [completed, principal]
  7. Tigor Panjaitan [completed, principal]
  8. Melissa Hensley [completed, principal]
  9. Tmnit Hailu [completed, associate]
  10. Ksenia Nikolaeva [associate]
  11. Nirma Yossa [principal]
  12. Weichang Kong [principal]
  13. Sufian Almubarak [principal]
  14. Krismiyati Tasrin [principal]
  15. Xuanbo Liu [associate]
  16. Abolghasem Azhdari [associate]

*See also Supervision.


Teaching Responsibilities

SEES Most Impassioned Teacher Award (2020)

The University of Queensland

  • Planning Theory (PLAN4001 / PLAN7120) – Lecturer & Coordinator [Highly Commended course by AESOP]
  • Transport Planning (PLAN2100 / PLAN7116) – Lecturer & Coordinator [Dean’s Commendation for Excellent Teaching, 2020 and 2021]
  • History of the Built Environment (PLAN2005) – Lecturer & Coordinator
  • Citymaking: Theory and Practice (PLAN4001 / PLAN7120) – Lecturer




English, Albanian, Italian, Spanish, French.


Service Roles (UQ)

  • Member of Executive Committee (SEES) [current]
  • Director of Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Committee (SEES) [current]
  • Member of Early and Mid-Career Researchers Reference Group (Faculty of Science) [past]
  • Member of Research Committee (SEES) [past]
  • Member of Health, Safety and Wellness Committee (SEES) [past]


Featured projects Duration
Reclaiming lost ground: Transitions of mobility and parking
Australian Research Council

Areas of research