Tampere University of Technology

TUTCRIS Research Portal

Sofie Pelsmakers


  • Assistant Professor (tenure track), Architecture - Teaching and research staff

Education/Academic qualification

2016Doctor of Philosophy, Philosophy (Natural Sciences), University College London
2012Master of Science, University College London
2006Other or Unknown Education, Level of Education Unknown, Kingston University
2003Master of Architecture, University of East London
2000Master of Science (Architecture), University of East London
1997Bachelor of Arts

Professional Qualifications

2007RIBA chartered architect
2006ARB registered architect (UK)

Profile information

Since autumn 2018 I am a tenure-track Assistant Professor in sustainable architecture and sustainable housing design, and I chair the sustainable housing design research group at Tampere University (ASUTUT). My passion is for teaching, practice and research that makes a difference and responds to current societal and environmental challenges, including the current climate emergency and the role of architects and educators within it. I have over 15 years of experience in designing, building and teaching sustainable architecture with specialty in ecological, low energy, affordable housing design and housing retrofit. I am particularly interested in how buildings and spaces work in reality (i.e. actual performance and user satisfaction).

I am an architect by training, in addition to which I completed an MSc Architecture in Advanced Environmental and Energy Studies (at UEL, 2000), and a Masters in Research in Building Energy Demand Reduction at the UCL Energy Institute (2012), part of the Bartlett Faculty of the Built Environment, where I also completed my PhD (2016). I bring experience from practice (e.g. Levitt Bernstein Architects and ECD Architects), and from the Aarhus School of Architecture in Denmark (2018-19), the Bartlett Faculty of the Built Environment (University College London (UCL), 2011-2016), as well as the Sheffield School of Architecture (2015-2018), and the University of East London (2001-2011). 

To date I have (co)authored 16 peer-reviewed journal publications, and over 50 industry articles and invitations for keynote speeches, guest presentations, or other invited scientific or industry roles. This included periodic engagement with the UK government Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC/DBIS). Additionally, I (co)-authored 7 book chapters and I sole authored 1 book (The Environmental Design Pocketbook), and I am co-author of another book 'People, Energy, Buildings- Architecture for a Changing World' (publication due in 2020). I am Associate Editor of peer reviewed journal Buildings and Cities, and external examiner at Cambridge University (Interdisciplinary Design for the Built Environment masters). I act as a reviewer for the Swedish Research Funding Council FORMAS (Sustainable urban and rural development) and for several conferences (Sustainable Built Environment, PLEA etc), and for several journals such as Energy and Buildings, BRI, ICE, BSERT etc. I am a Senior Fellow of the UK Higher Education Academy in recognition of my pedagogical approaches, and I also hold pedagogical training certificates from Denmark and Finland in support of student-centred learning. Some of my pedagogical approaches in embedding sustainability in design studio, and use of peer-peer and blended learning are also published. Recognition of my work includes Bartlett PhD Alumni Role model (2017), RIBA Role Model (2015), Women influencing sustainability in architecture (Architects journal, 2013), recognition for the Environmental Design Pocketbook (RIBA, 2012 and UKGBC, 2013). 


Language skills

English (proficient)

Dutch (mother tongue)

French, German, Indonesian/Malay (basic)


  • TH Building construction - Sustainability, Architecture, low energy, housing design, environmental design, retrofit, performance

ID: 16894141