Personal details

Emeritus Professor Helen Armstrong
Emeritus Professor
Faculty of Engineering,
School of Architecture & Built Environment
Emeritus Professor
Administrative Division,
Human Resources,
Office of the Exec Director, Human Resources
Discipline *
Architecture, Urban and Regional Planning
+61 2 9357 5849
View location details (QUT staff and student access only)
Identifiers and profiles

MLArch (University of New South Wales), GradDipLD (University of New South Wales), BSc (University of Sydney)

Professional memberships
and associations

Fellow of the Australian Institute of Landscape Architects

Member, ICOMOS (Australia) 1990- present

Member, International Editorial Advisory Board, Landscape Research, UK. Invited member of Architectural Review Advisory Panel Member, Sutherland Shire Council, 2006-present

Urban Conservation Committee, National Trust, 1983-1996

Reviews Editor Landscape Australia, 1985 –1994.

Selected Advisory & Steering Committees

* Field of Research code, Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification (ANZSRC), 2008


Founding Director: Cultural Landscape Research Unit (UNSW, QUT)
 Australian Landscape & Sense of Place (1978-1985)

In 1985, The Cultural Landscape Research Unit was established whose aim was to define and document the cultural environments of Australia and their resultant landscapes.  Work in this area was undertaken mainly as historical studies to develop contextual guidelines for planning and conservation.
Heritage Landscapes & Migrant Place-making (1986-present)
In the early 1990s research addressed professional and community perception of environmental heritage and how effectively legislation conserves natural and cultural heritage.  This lead onto extensive work with migrant communities in Australia looking at immigrant place making, including heritage values associated with such places (Armstrong).

In 1987, a large research project was undertaken to identify the cultural significance of the landscapes of Queensland.  This project, Contested Terrains, explored ways of analysing meanings and values embedded in landscapes and management models for large scale heritage landscapes (Armstrong, Sim & Seto).

Australian Landscape Design Ethos (1986 – present)

In 1986 a series of videos was initiated documenting profiles of 20th century Australian landscape designers.  Two videos in this series have been completed (Armstrong & Burton).  Other projects have involved identifying seminal influences on current landscape designers and their practice (Armstrong & Mossop).

Cultural Pluralism in Australian Designed Spaces is a new project identifying the hybridity within the designed public places of Australian cities (Armstrong).

Design Partnerships (1987 – present)

In 1987 the importance of cultural values and community meanings was recognised as components of sense of place.  Research projects were initiated to identify community values related to place using community art projects based on the Common Ground movement in U.K

Applied research on collaborative design within selected rural and urban communities, Creative Village, was undertaken from 1992 – 1996 (Armstrong, Le Lorenzo, & the Arts Council of NSW).


Creative Works as Research (1997 – present)

In 1997, the concept of the Refereed Landscape Studio was introduced.  This has been applied to graduate landscape design studios.  A set of templates for these studios have been developed and applied.    This has led to a focus on the senior design studio as a site of research through design (Armstrong & Robbins).

In 1998, Creative Works as Research was introduced.  The first project has focussed on Phyto-remediation of toxic sites as environmental art (Steiner & Armstrong).

Marginal Landscape Interpretations (2006-present)

Research into the interpretation of marginal landscapes began in 2006 with a study of the peri-urban landscapes in Australian cities and the zwischenstadt of Austrian towns and cities.   This has culminated in a book  Marginal Landscapes

Mapping Urban Resilience in Riverland Sydney (2013-Present)

This is collaborative research with members of Institute of Culture and Society, UWS.  We are focussed on temporary urbanism in Western Sydney with a particular focus on contemporary Commons

Cultural Contradictions in Heritage Landscape Interpretation (2013-present)   

This research is being done in collaboration with Professor Han Feng, Tongii University, Shanghai where we are comparing Western concepts of aesthetics with Chinese perceptions of aesthetics as it applies to heritage landscapes.


This information has been contributed by Emeritus Professor Helen Armstrong.