Manchester Architecture Research Group (MARG)

MARG is an interdisciplinary research group driven by the understanding of architecture as a social practice, and as a broad cultural, social, media and technical network that exceeds the work of single architects or buildings as objects.


We also tackle processes of urbanisation at a variety of scales and times, from local and immediate to the global and long term.

We study architecture as contested practices that encompass disciplinary and professional concerns, but we also reach far beyond them in order to address the intersections between economy, society, politics, culture, media and environment.

In some of our projects architecture is taken as a lens through which to study how challenges and opportunities of urbanisation at the beginning of the 21st century are both embedded in longer historical processes and have long-term consequences for the future.

Our work is motivated by current developments and innovations in architecture to explore the complex processes and practices, formal and informal, within and through which the built environment is conceived, used, shared, contested, communicated, mediated, adapted, and changed.

Since our inception, we have been at the forefront of developing and promoting interdisciplinary approaches to understanding architecture. Through our expertise in ethnographic and anthropological techniques, archival methods, oral history, discursive and institutional approaches, infrastructural transitions and systems thinking, we explore the social, economic, environmental and political conditions and consequences of architectural design and technology.

Our research projects are diverse, and vary greatly in theme and scope, ranging across buildings and cities, temporary and permanent, culture and education, historical and contemporary, Global in scope, with concern for social inclusivity, the user, the citizen, as well as the designer, the policy maker, and the media.

Yet across this diversity, they share an emphasis on situated knowledge and the practices of design professionals and users, the contested practices of place and city-making, network dynamics, and the genealogies of current practices and processes.

MARG is uniquely positioned to produce research that is theoretically, historiographical, conceptually and methodologically innovative and empirically impactful.

Our people

Contact us


Manchester Architecture Research Group (MARG)
School of Environment, Education and Development (SEED)
Humanities Bridgeford Street Building
The University of Manchester
Oxford Road
M13 9PL
United Kingdom

The Humanities Bridgeford Street Building is number 35 on the campus map.


  • +44 (0)161 275 6900