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About Stephen Pretlove

Stephen Pretlove is Professor of Sustainable Construction and Deputy Head of School in the School of Architecture and the Built Environment, College of Arts. Stephen has a background in building engineering and management, architecture and environmental design and post graduate industrial experience in construction engineering. He gained a first class degree in Building Engineering and Management from Bristol Polytechnic, a Masters degree with distinction in Architecture (Environmental Design & Engineering) from UCL and a PhD in Environmental Studies from UCL. Before moving into academia, he worked as a construction engineer for Balfour Beatty Building Ltd, then Trafalgar House Construction Management Ltd on projects in London, Manchester, Lisbon and Seville. During the last 24 years he has worked in two of the largest Built Environment Faculties in London, at London South Bank University and Kingston University London. Stephen’s research focuses on the provision of genuinely sustainable low-carbon buildings through the three key stages of procurement: design, construction and occupation. During the last twenty years, he has carried out research across a broad range of areas relating to sustainable buildings: Resilient environmental design in response to climate change Hygrothermal modelling in buildings Health risks associated with environmental conditions, moulds and mites Impact of heating, ventilation and humidity on Indoor Air Quality Energy and carbon requirements in buildings Renewable energy systems Post Occupancy Evaluation (POE) of buildings Conservation of historic buildings Innovations in material technology After completing his PhD at UCL, Stephen was involved in a number of multi-disciplinary UK Government and Research Council funded research projects, broadly investigating the impact of the indoor environment on the health and wellbeing of building occupants. This work involved the development and validation of a number of innovative digital models for predicting conditions of temperature and humidity in the indoor environment and in the microenvironments where harmful microorganisms exist. Of particular relevance in this work was the link between indoor environments and respiratory disease and the impact of building design, construction and occupant behaviour on health risks. More recently, Stephen’s research has focused on the development of sustainable expertise in practice, primarily through Knowledge Transfer Partnerships (KTP) with local architectural, construction and property companies, and Registered Providers of Social Housing, but also through Collaborative Doctoral Awards (CDA), Innovation Vouchers (IV) and consultancy income generation. This work has had national and international impact and has led to the development of specialist in-house expertise in a number of local architectural, construction, and Social Housing organisations. Funding has also been secured for a number of innovative research projects, including the evaluating the energy and carbon performance of heating systems in historic church buildings and the environmental performance of Cross Laminated Timber (CLT) envelope to an architectural drawing and model archive building. Stephen has published his work widely in refereed journals, at international conferences and in books and has won awards for his research. His work has received international media coverage through the medium of print, radio, television and the internet by organisations including the BBC, Channel 4 and National Geographic.

Department Responsibilities

Professor of Sustainable Construction Deputy Head of School of Architecture and the Built Environment Leader in the development, validation and operation of courses in construction science and management Leader in the development of research and enterprise activity in construction science and management Chair Faculty Research Ethics Committee

Subject Specialism

The procurement of a sustainable and low carbon built environment


  • Senior Fellow of the HEA — Higher Education Academy (SFHEA), 2015
  • Fellow of the RSA — Royal Society for the encouragement of the Arts, Manufactures & Commerce (FRSA), 2005
  • PhD Environmental Design — University College London, 2000
  • MSc (Arch) Architecture (Environmental Design & Engineering) — University College London, 1996
  • BSc (Hons) Building Engineering & Management — Bristol Polytechnic, 1990

Research Interests

  • Adaptability and flexibility

  • Building Performance Evaluation

  • Conservation of historic buildings

  • Digital technology and engineering

  • hydrothermal modelling

  • Indoor air quality and health and wellbeing

  • Innovations in material technology

  • low energy and low carbon architecture

  • Modern Methods of Construction

  • Occupant behaviour

  • Post Occupancy Evaluation

  • Renewable energy systems

  • Resilient environmental design

Research Projects

  • KTP 4: Eltherington Group Ltd: development of innovative cladding and glazing systems for architectural applications — awarded £150000 by Innovate UK in 2017
  • KTP 3: Clive Chapman Architects: sustainable, life-long, low carbon buildings — awarded £120000 by InnovateUK in 2015
  • Innovation Voucher: Lee Evans Partnership — awarded £5000 by TSB in 2014
  • KTP 2: mspace group: sustainable design, construction and occupation of buildings — awarded £280000 by TSB in 2010
  • Collaborative Doctoral Award with the Environment Trust of Richmond — awarded £60000 by AHRC in 2008
  • KTP 1: Clive Chapman Architects: establishing a sustainability consultancy service — awarded £110000 by TSB in 2007
  • Science Research Investment Fund (SRIF) — awarded £45000 by OST and DfES in 2006
  • Partnerships for Public Engagement — awarded £20000 by EPSRC in 2006
  • Hygrothermal modelling 2: controlling dust mites by environmental means — awarded £104000 by EPSRC in 2004
  • Hydrothermal modelling 1: dust mites, moulds and health — awarded £104000 by EPSRC in 1999

Research in the Lincoln Repository

Professional Affiliations

  • InnovateUK — Research Assessor
  • Design Council — Built Environment Expert (BEE)