University of Technology Sydney

11520 Making Space for Advocacy

Warning: The information on this page is indicative. The subject outline for a particular session, location and mode of offering is the authoritative source of all information about the subject for that offering. Required texts, recommended texts and references in particular are likely to change. Students will be provided with a subject outline once they enrol in the subject.

Subject handbook information prior to 2024 is available in the Archives.

UTS: Design, Architecture and Building: Architecture
Credit points: 6 cp

Subject level:


Result type: Grade and marks

Requisite(s): 144 credit points of completed study in spk(s): C10413 Bachelor of Design Architecture Master of Architecture
These requisites may not apply to students in certain courses.
There are course requisites for this subject. See access conditions.


11520 Spatial Research: 'Making Space for Advocacy'

Architects and Landscape Architects also need to be advocates. Advocacy, as its definition suggests, is the act or process of supporting (or defending) a cause. Now more than ever the world seems to be suffering from a long list of environmental, social, and political crises. From global warming, and the consequent extreme weather events and impact on ecosystems, to the deep effects of colonisation on indigenous peoples and land, the need to act on and advocate for environmental and social justice has never been more urgent. The core questions raised within this context are what is the role of advocacy in architecture and landscape architecture today, and how can we understand its influence on a more just future?

‘Making Space for Advocacy' invites students to reflect on their civic, social, environmental, and ethical responsibilities as design professionals. The subject situates architecture and landscape architecture as disciplines with agency - exposing students to broader practice through forms of advocacy. The subject recognises that the disciplines of architecture and landscape architecture are contingent not only on good design skills but on developing a critical voice that responds to complex, contemporary and often urgent conditions, scaling from the domestic to the planetary. ‘Making Space for Advocacy' equips students with the skills, methods and formats required to frame, situate, and project themselves into a position of advocacy as they enter the profession.

Subject learning objectives (SLOs)

On successful completion of this subject, students should be able to:

1. Demonstrate an understanding of the theoretical application of forms of Advocacy within the profession.
2. Research, identify and develop tools and techniques of Advocacy for the application and deployment within their own practice.
3. Articulate, establish and contextualise a contemporary position of Advocacy that responds to the complex and challenging social, ethical, environmental, political and regulatory contexts within which architectural and landscape architectural practice is carried out.
4. Formulate a strategic plan towards the establishment of a position of Advocacy within an expanded architectural and landscape architectural practice.

Course intended learning outcomes (CILOs)

This subject also contributes to the following Course Intended Learning Outcomes:

  • Advocate for landscape values to specialist and non-specialist audiences. (A.2)
  • Present critical arguments about how research informs and drives design practice. (C.1)
  • Innovate using emergent forms of landscape architectural practice, methods and technologies. (I.1)
  • Develop advanced knowledge and skills through self-directed reflective practice. (P.1)
  • Critically position work within an extended disciplinary context. (R.1)
  • Challenge design conventions through scholarly research and investigative practice. (R.3)

Contribution to the development of graduate attributes

The term CAPRI is used for the five Design, Architecture and Building faculty graduate attribute categories where:

C = communication and group work

A = attitudes and values

P = practical and professional

R = research and critique

I = innovation and creativity.

Course intended learning outcomes (CILOs) are linked to these categories using codes (e.g. C-1, A-3, P-4, etc.).

Teaching and learning strategies

This subject is designed as a collaborative and discursive juncture between theory and practice. The subject includes lectures, conversations and debates, and participatory workshops to unpack forms of architectural and landscape architectural advocacy. Lectures will introduce students to issues in the contemporary context and will be followed by open conversations that examine the topic presented. Workshops and seminars will research/debate/formulate a responsive position for review and also unpack required readings. Formative feedback will be undertaken through weekly peer-to-peer and peer-to-tutorial mentor sessions and assessment milestones to include formal critiquing panels.

Content (topics)

Subject areas are focused on how and what it means to advocate in architecture and landscape architecture today. Topics of advocacy include the relationship between architecture/landscape architecture and:

  • Climate Change / Environmental Justice
  • Biodiversity
  • Working with Country
  • Decolonisation (in practice or pedagogy)
  • Social Justice
  • Housing Affordability / Accessibility
  • Refuge Housing / Housing for Women
  • Heritage
  • Wellbeing and Mental Health
  • Gender Equity
  • Queering Spaces / Queer Practice
  • Diversity and Inclusion
  • Pay Equity
  • Flexible Work (and healthier work spaces)
  • Labour Practices
  • Policy
  • Anti-Corruption / Good Governance
  • 'Better' Design (relationship b/w Design and Construction Industry)
  • 'Better' University Education
  • Public Space


Assessment task 1: Advocacy as Precedent


Advocacy as Precedent - weekly tasks and ongoing development of Case Study

Please refer to detailed Assessment 01 Handout.


This task addresses the following subject learning objectives:

1, 2, 3 and 4

This task also addresses the following course intended learning outcomes that are linked with a code to indicate one of the five CAPRI graduate attribute categories (e.g. C.1, A.3, P.4, etc.):

C.1, P.1, R.1 and R.3

Type: Case study
Groupwork: Group, group and individually assessed
Weight: 40%

Assessment task 2: Advocacy as Project


Presentation of Advocacy as Project.

Please refer to detailed Assessment 02 Handout.


This task addresses the following subject learning objectives:

2, 3 and 4

This task also addresses the following course intended learning outcomes that are linked with a code to indicate one of the five CAPRI graduate attribute categories (e.g. C.1, A.3, P.4, etc.):

A.2, C.1, I.1 and R.1

Type: Presentation
Groupwork: Group, individually assessed
Weight: 60%

Minimum requirements

The DAB attendance policy requires students to attend no less than 80% of formal teaching sessions (lectures and tutorials) for each class they are enrolled in to remain eligible for assessment.

Recommended texts

On Advocacy and expanded forms of practice

Awan, N., & Schneider, T., & Till, J. (2011). Spatial Agency: Other Ways of Doing Architecture. New York: Routledge.

Bell, Bryan. (2008). Expanding Architecture: Design as Activism. New York: Metropolis Books.

Blundell-Jones, P., Till, J., & Petrescu, D. (2005). Architecture and participation. London: Spon Press.

Borasi, G. (2015). The Other Architect: Another Way of Building Architecture. Montreal: CCA and London: Spector Books.

Deutsch, R. (2020). Think Like an Architect: How to Develop Critical, Creative and Collaborative Problem-Solving Skills. London: Riba Publishing.

Findley, L. (2005). Building Change: Architecture, Politics and Cultural Agency. London: Routledge.

Fisher, T. (2011). Ethics for Architects. New York: Princeton Architectural Press.

Hamers, D., & Mesquita, N.B., & Schoffelen, J., & Vaneycken, A. (2017). Trading Places: Practices of Public Participation in Art and Design Research. Barcelona: dprbarcelona.

Harriss, Hyde, R., & Marcaccio, R. (2020). Architects after Architecture: Alternative Pathways for Practice. Milton: Taylor & Francis Group.

Hromek, Danièle. (2023). "Indigenizing practice: What can non-Indigenous designers do?" Architecture Australia, July/Aug issue.

Hyde. R. (2012). Future practice conversations from the edge of architecture. New York: Routledge.

Hwang, J., & Bohm, M. (2016). Beyond Patronage: Reconsidering Models of Practice. New York City: Actar D.

Kossak, F. (2010). Agency: Working with Uncertain Architectures. New York: Routledge.

Kristiansson, T., Maze, R., Schalk, M. (2017). Feminist Futures of Spatial Practice: Materialisms, Activisms, Dialogues, Pedagogies, Projections. Strong Research Environment: Architecture in Effect. Rethinking the Social. Baunach: AADR, Art Architecture Design Research.

Latour, B. (2005). Making Things Public: Atmospheres of Democracy. Cambridge: ZKM publishing program.

Morrow, R. & Abdelmonem, M. G. (2012). Peripheries: edge conditions in architecture (Morrow & M. G. Abdelmonem, Eds.). New York: Routledge.

Petrescu, D., & Trogal, K. (2017). The Social (Re)Production of Architecture: Politics, Values and Actions in Contemporary Practice. New York: Routledge.

Rendell, J. (2007). Critical Architecture. London: Routledge.

Sinclair, C., & Stohr, K. (2006). Design like you give a damn: architectural responses to humanitarian crises. London: Thames & Hudson.

Till, J. (2009). Architecture Depends. Cambridge: MIT Press.

Wall, E., & Waterman, T. (2017). Landscape and Agency?: Critical Essays. New York: Routledge.

On Post-Coloniality / Decolonial Methods and Practice

Archibald, Xiiem, Q. Q., Lee-Morgan, J. B. J., Santolo, J. D., & Smith, L. T. (2019). Decolonizing research: Indigenous storywork as methodology. London: ZED Books.

Campt, T. (2017). Listening to Images. Durham: Duke University Press

Hall, S. (1992). The West and the Rest: Discourse and Power. In Gieban, B., & Hall, S. (Ed). The Formation of Modernity. Cambridge: Polity Press.

Hall, S. (1997). The Spectacle of the Other. In Hall, S. (Ed). In Representation: Cultural Representations and Signifying Practices. London: SAGE.

Lokko, L., & Naa, N. (1999). White Papers, Black Marks: Architecture, Race, Culture. London: Athlone.

Lokko, L. (2019). Decolonising Architecture. Assemble Papers.

Mbembe, A. (2002). On the postcolony. Berkeley: University of California Press.

Mbembe, A. (2015). Decolonizing Knowledge and the Question of the Archive. Africa Is a Country.

Paperson, L. (2017). A Third University is Possible. Minnesota: University of Minnesota. Press.

Said, E. W. (1978). Orientalism. New York: Pantheon Books. Said, E. W. (1994). Culture and Imperialism. New York: Knopf.

Tuck, E., Ree, C. (2013). A Glossary of Haunting. Canada: Left Coast Press Verges, F. (2021). A Decolonial Feminism. London: Pluto Press.

Wilson, S. (2008). Research Is Ceremony: Indigenous Research Methods. Nova Scotia: Fernwood Publishing.

On Country

Deadly Djurumin Yarns. Podcast Series.

Dudgeon, P., Herbert, J., Milroy, J., & Oxenham, D. (2016). Us women, our ways, our world. Broome: Magabala Books.

Foley, D., Pascoe, B., & Read, P. (2020). What the Colonists Never Knew: A History of Aboriginal Sydney. Canberra: National Museum of Australia Press.

Gammage, B. (2011). The biggest estate on earth?: how Aborigines made Australia. Allen & Unwin.

Gammage, B., Margo, N., & Pascoe, B. (2021). Country: Future Fire, Future Farming. Port Melbourne: Thames & Hudson Australia.

Grant, E., Greenop, K., Refiti, A. L., & Glenn, D. J. (2018). The Handbook of Contemporary Indigenous Architecture. Singapore: Springer Singapore Pte. Limited.

Kiddle, R., Stewart, L. P., & O’Brien, K. (2018). Our voices: indigeneity and architecture. ORO Editions.

Kovach, M. (2009). Indigenous Methodologies: Characteristics, Conversations and Contexts. Toronto: University of Toronto Press.

NSW Government Architect. (2023). Connecting with Country Framework.

NSW Government Architect. (2020). Designing with Country discussion paper.

Page, A., Memmott, P., & Neale, M. (2021). First Knowledges Design: Building on Country. Thames & Hudson Australia Pty Ltd.

Pascoe, B. (2018). Dark Emu. Broome: Magabala Books.

Steffensen, V. (2020). Fire Country: How Indigenous Fire Management Could Help Save Australia. Richmond: Hardie Grant Travel.

Yunkaporta, T. (2019). Sand Talk: How Indigenous Thinking Can Save the World. Melbourne: Text Publishing Company.

On the Environment

Bouchard, N. (2021). Waste matters?: adaptive reuse for productive landscapes (N. Bouchard, Ed.). Routledge.

Garayeva-Maleki, S., & Munder, H. (2020). Potential Worlds: Planetary memories and eco-fictions. Zurich: Scheidegger und Spiess.

Giddings, Joe. (2023). "Demolish nothing." The Architectural Review, no. 1503: 6-13.

Haraway, D. (1985). A Manifesto for Cyborgs: Science, technology, and socialist feminism in the 1980s. Socialist Review, (80).

Latour, B., & Porter, C. (2018). Down to Earth: Politics in the new climatic regime. Cambridge: Polity Press.

Graham, J., & Blanchfield, C (eds). (2016). Climates: Architecture and the Planetary Imaginary. New York: Columbia Books on Architecture and the City.

Mariam Kamara, Radical Sustainability,

Seibert, M. (2021). Atlas of material worlds?: mapping the agency of matter for a new landscape practice. New York: Routledge.