PGDip Professional Practice in Architecture (RIBA Part 3)
RIBA North West | 2019 - 2021
MArch Architecture (RIBA Part 2)
University of Manchester | 2016 - 2018
BA (Hons) Architecture (RIBA Part 1)
University of Manchester | 2011 - 2014
Cert. Environmental Psychology
Cornell University | 2021 - 2021
MSc Psychology (BPS Graduate Basis for Chartered Membership)
Manchester Metropolitan University | 2018 - 2020
Cert. Counselling Skills (BACP Level 2)
Manchester College | 2015 - 2016
Neurodiversity in the Workplace: Design Guidelines For ASD-friendly Post-pandemic Workplace Environments. (2021) Design Guidelines Document. Cornell University.
Interpersonal Space in Corporate Office Environments: Effects of Personality and Gender. (2020) MSc Thesis. Manchester Metropolitan University.
Towards a person-centred approach to architectural workspace design: A study of UK university workspaces and the development of a spatial psychometric scale. (2018) MArch Thesis. The University of Manchester.
Architect + Design Researcher
Atkins | 2018 - present
Architectural Assistant + 3D Visualiser
Bridge Architects | 2015 - 2016
Atkins | 2014 - 2015
Advanced Digital Design Tutor
Manchester School of Architecture | 2020-2021
Academic Teaching Assistant
Manchester School of Architecture | 2016 - 2018
Architects Registration Board (ARB) | Chartered Member
British Psychological Society (BPS) | Graduate Member
Organisations + Specialist Groups
International Association of People-Environment Studies (IAPS) | Member
Academy of Neuroscience for Architecture (ANFA) | Member
Division of Academics, Researchers, and Teachers in Psychology (BPS) | Member
Women in Architecture UK (WiA) | Mentor
The quality and characteristics of one's environment can influence their psychophysiological health and behaviour with several positive and negative consequences for both the individual and their wider context. Although the physical setting is by no means the only contributing factor to this, suitable design can help facilitate activities that reduce stress, encourage sustainable decisions, trigger curiosity, support diversity, or inspire innovation. Of course, not every problem can be solved through design, but as the contemporary practice of architecture progressively intersects with data science to address complex challenges through multi-parameter approaches, there is an opportunity to adopt knowledge and methods from various branches of science to achieve a more holistic understanding of building performance that enriches this interdisciplinary approach. As such, I believe that an in-depth understanding of end-users and their requirements, both project-specific and universal, can greatly assist architects in making more informed design decisions.
This commitment to designing comfortable, inclusive and sustainable places has set me on a lifelong path to further my knowledge on human-environment relationships as a practicing architect and researcher; a unique area of expertise in the intersection between psychology, sustainability and the physical environment.
Hello! My name is Archontia. I am a UK-based Architect and interdisciplinary Design Researcher with a background in psychology and computational design. My work takes place in the intersection between human experience, digital design and sustainable development, where I utilise quantitative and mixed-method approaches from social science to develop an evidence basis for design.
Archontia Manolakelli - Architect + Design Researcher
During my 5+ years of experience working in industry I have been involved with projects across various sectors and design stages including Workplace, Aviation, Education, Civic, Leisure, and Residential, both as a designer and as part of a research team, focusing on statistical analysis of human experience data, pre and post occupancy evaluation, and end-user engagement. My process adopts quantitative and mixed method approaches from social science with the aim to provide an evidence basis for design decisions. Recent practice-based research work includes leading an original project which utilises VR to understand task-based spatial preferences in the workplace in relation to personality.
Studying across disciplines has also allowed me to explore human-environment relationships from different perspectives through fundamental research during my Architecture and Urbanism studies, which focused on sustainability and computational design, and masters studies in Psychology with a focus on Environmental Psychology which I completed in parallel to my work in practice. My research to date has explored spatial preferences in relation to personality in university workspaces, the development of a design methodology through the use of Virtual Reality and sensor technology for assessing the impact of biophilic design on stress levels, personal space as a function of contextual and interpersonal influences using a systems theory approach, and the development of evidence-based guidelines to support neurodiversity in post-pandemic offices.