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Team

Our research team constitutes a wide range of expertise across disciplines of urban climatology, engineering, data mining, and architecture, which are critical for successfully implementing our multi-disciplinary projects.

    Lead – Dr Negin Nazarian

Dr. Negin Nazarian is the leader of the Climate-Resilient Cities lab and a Scientia Lecturer in the Faculty of Built Environment at the University of New South Wales (UNSW, Sydney).

As an urban climatologist, Negin is interested in the ways the built environment interacts with the climate, and in return, how urban dwellers are affected by this interaction. Her research projects mainly focus on urban (over)heating and ventilation, and follow two main tracks: First, enabling ‘climate-conscious’ or ‘climate-smart’ cities – How can we have a human-centric urban design that is in harmony with the local climate? 

The second research focus is on multiscale urban climate modeling. Her overall research goal is to develop modeling techniques that impact not only the climate analyses in the scientific community but also enable architects, planners, and policymakers to incorporate comprehensive, accurate, yet efficient assessments of urban design.

    Postdoctoral Research Fellows 

Dr. Sijie Liu is a postdoctoral research fellow and finished her PhD in the Climate-Resilient Cities lab in 2021. Sijie’s research focuses on outdoor thermal comfort, and she uses a range of methodologies, such as surveys, crowdsourcing, and modeling in her project. Sijie hopes the topic will help practitioners to gain a better understanding of outdoor thermal comfort from both physiological and psychological perspectives. Such an understanding would be a prerequisite to effective management and optimization of outdoor thermal comfort.
 
Dr. Marzie Naserikia joined the PhD program at the Climate Change Research Centre at UNSW in 2020. She is now a postdoctoral research associate at the ARC Centre of Excellence for Climate Extremes. Her research mainly focuses on urban heat adaptation and mitigation using remote sensing and observational data. Marzie is also interested in the application of Geographic Information Systems, machine learning, and satellite imagery in the spatial analysis of urban areas.
Dr. Jiachen Lu completed his PhD study at UNSW Sydney focusing on urban canopy parameterization over complex neighborhoods. He completed his Master’s degree at the University of California San Diego with a focus on planetary boundary layer parameterization for the stratocumulus to cumulus transition process. He has interests in land surface modelling, computational fluid dynamics, and urban climatology. His work now focuses on better urban representation in the Community Atmosphere Biosphere Land Exchange model (CABLE). 

    PhD Students 

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Mahya Parchami is a Ph.D. student interested in thermal comfort and personal heat exposure in outdoor settings. She’s devoted to understanding how environmental conditions impact individuals. With a focus on human-scale effects, Mahya carefully observes environmental factors. She explores links between microclimate elements and our body’s reactions. Her dedication aims to provide insights connecting our surroundings to our well-being.

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Mohammad Abousaeidi is a Ph.D. student of the Built Environment joint supervised by Gloria P at UNSW. He holds a background in Architecture and Urban Design and is particularly interested in climate-sensitive urban design, bioclimatic architecture, and sustainable housing. His Ph.D. research is focusing on the significance of thermal retrofit strategies in mitigating heat gain and enhancing thermal comfort within social housing units in Sydney. By evaluating the differences between retrofit strategies and their impacts on parameters such as cost, time, and thermal comfort, he aims to provide valuable insights for landlords and property managers involved in renovating older high-rise residential apartments.
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I am Maryam Fazeli, a PhD student with joint supervision from Prof. Jason Evans, focusing on urban climatology and humanity-centered design. My educational background includes a Master’s and Bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering at Shiraz University, with my Master’s thesis examining the evaluation of wall-modelled large eddy simulation in internal flows.

    Research Assistants

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Wei Li is a research student at Monash University. His current work involves developing neural network models to understand the physical laws governing urban geometry configurations and wind speed distribution.

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Crystal Chan is a research assistant responsible for supporting research activities in the CRC Lab. She did her BSc in Earth System Science at CUHK, and is currently pursuing a master’s degree in City Planning at UNSW. Her field of interest lies in urban spatial analytics, smart city initiatives, digital governance, sustainable urban form, and liveability. Her role as an RA involves various tasks such as collecting and analyzing data for an urban heat project and conducting a literature review on CO2-based airborne transmission risk in buildings.

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I am Shakir Ayman Azad, a third-year Bachelor of Data Science and Decisions student majoring in computational data science at UNSW, Sydney. I started my journey with CCRC in November 2022 as a CLEX undergrad scholar and later in August 2023, I commenced my position as a Research Assistant under Dr. Negin Nazarian. During this time, I’ve focused on annual thermal comfort analyses in Australian cities using clustered weather types where the clustering helps streamline the computation of thermal comfort predictions for efficient urban planning. Currently I am working on extending this framework to develop practical use cases.

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Lana Fraser is a third-year Bachelor of Science student majoring in Mathematical Modelling and Computer Science at ANU. In early 2024, she joined the Climate-Resilient Cities lab as a CLEX undergraduate scholar. Lana began a research project analyzing how varying wind directions affect wind speeds in idealized urban configurations. She uses data from a high-resolution computational fluid dynamics model to conduct her analysis and is currently continuing this work as a research assistant.

    Alumni

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Dr Mahsan Sadeghi was a postdoctoral research fellow, who was awarded a National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) grant from the Centre of Air pollution, energy, and health Research (CAR). She is currently working on an interdisciplinary project focusing on energy transition, air pollution, and population health. Mahsan commenced her PhD degree at The University of Sydney’s School of Architecture, Design, and Planning in 2014 and received her PhD award in 2017 for a thesis looking at improving occupant thermal comfort through enhanced ventilation systems in the Australian residential context.
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Nizar Hoblos was a research assistant in the Climate-Resilient Cities Lab on the project “Design Next Smart Campus at UNSW”. He is a PhD Student at the UNSW Business School, School of Information Systems and Technology Management. 

 
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Nariddh Khean was a research assistant working on the MyAir project, which is an IoT network of environmental quality in educational spaces. Nariddh is a deep learning researcher and software developer exploring the intersection of deep learning and the built environment. Nariddh has since joined the Austrian Institute of Technology, Vienna, applying his deep learning expertise in the domain of urban planning and design.
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Dr Giulia Ulpiani is a postdoctoral research fellow currently working joint with CRC Lab and UNSW Climate Change Research Center. She holds a Ph.D. in Industrial Engineering (specialized in Environmental Applied Physics) and a Master’s Degree in Mechanical Engineering. Giulia’s research, with a focus on climate and energy in the built environment, spans: i) urban heat island mitigation/adaptation technologies and holistic assessment of the impacts on health, energy, and comfort, ii) linkage between urban overheating and pollution, with special emphasis on extreme weather events (e.g. heatwaves, bushfires), iii) outdoor/indoor comfort and air quality, iv) advanced cooling technologies based on caloric materials and daytime radiative coolers, and v) smart automation of energy systems.
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Fuyu (Nick) Zhang dedicates to provide technical support and data analysis for the MyAir Project as a sub-division of the Smart Campus UNSW, under supervision of Dr Negin Nazarian. His research area is mainly focused on microclimate data analysis and assessment for internal air temperature, humidity, carbon dioxide (CO2) and volatile organic compound (VOCs), as well as the correlation with occupiers’ activity, working performance and health symptoms.