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Gerhard Bruyns
PolyU Scholars Hub

Gerhard Bruyns

Associate Professor

Programme Leader of BA Environment & Interior Design, Deputy Specialism Leader Transitional Environments Design, PhD Programme Convener, Cubic Journal Editor in Chief

  • V1002g
  • +852 2766 4640
  • Expertise: Urban environmental design, spatial morphology, regional design, architecture, theory


Dr. ir. Gerhard Bruyns is an architect and urbanist. He is Associate Professor (tenured), the School of Design at The Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hong Kong SAR. Previously he held tenure at the Faculty of Architecture, Delft University of Technology [TU Delft], the Netherlands, in both the Delft School of Design and the Department of Urbanism. He has taught in design curricula of undergraduate, masters and PhD level studies, in institutions in Europe, South America, South Africa and Asia. His research deals with the aspects of spatial morphology ( and its impact on both the formal expression of the city and societal conditions that are compressed into an urban landscape of Asia. He has published on design strategies, volumetric analysis of the urban landscape, spatial commons, geopolitical issues linked to spatial practices and urban morphology. (

Education and Academic Qualifications

  • Doctor of Philosophy Degree – PhD. Faculty of Architecture, Delft University of Technology. Delft, The Netherlands. 
  • Masters of Science Degree in Architecture – MSc (Cum laude). Specialization in Urbanism, Faculty of Architecture, Delft University of Technology. Delft, The Netherlands.
  • Bachelor of Architecture Degree – BArch (Cum laude), Department of Architecture, Faculty of Engineering, Built Environment, and Information Technology. University of Pretoria, South Africa.

Professional Qualifications

Academic and Professional Experience

  • Assistant Professor (Tenure) – Department of Architecture. Delft University of Technology, The Netherlands.
  • Visiting Lecturer (DIA – TU Delft Joint program) –Dessau Institute of Architecture. Dessau, Germany.
  • Design Instructor –Department of Architecture, Landscape Architecture and Interior Design, University of Pretoria. Pretoria, South Africa.
  • Executive Team Member – International Forum of Urbanism.
  • Committee Member – School of Higher and Professional Education, Vocational Training Council Committee.
  • Committee Member – DRS 2020 – Post Graduate Programme Committee, Brisbane, Australia.
  • Committee Member – Research Committee Research Committee iphiGenia, Germany.
  • Committee Member – The International Federation of Interior Architects and Designers Education Taskforce,
  • Committee Member – Research Institute of Sustainable Urban Development, RISUD, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University,
  • Reviewer – National Research Foundation South Africa.

Teaching Area

  • Interior Architecture – with a focus on dense settings and spatial complexes,
  • Environmental Design – encompassing Interior design, architectural design, environmental issues and space planning,
  • Urban Design – morphological design and analysis in multi-level and volumetric urban development,
  • Spatial and Regional Design – design-research in testing new and different methodologies for developing regional scenarios.


Research Outputs

Bruyns, G., Higgins, C. D. & Nel, D. H.. (2020). Urban Volumetrics: From Vertical to Volumetric Urbanisation and its Extensions to Empirical Morphological Analysis. In Urban Studies.
DOI: 10.1177/0042098020936970

Bruyns, G. & Nel, D. (2020). ‘Lateral-privatisation of the Publics: Hong Kong’s Spatial Struggles’. In : Urban Design International.

Bruyns, GJB., (2019). Tactical Interiority: Hong Kong’s Lived Interiors as Praxis for tactical living in High-Density Landscapes. In: Interiors – Design / Architecture / Culture. Taylor and Francis Online.
DOI: 10.1080/20419112.2019.1642571.

Bruyns, GJB., Elkin, D., & Hasdell, P. (2017). ‘Erasing Landscapes’. In: Urban Next, Journal #4, Photographic Atlas of Cities. ISSN 2575-5374.

Sohn, H., Kousoulas, S., Bruyns, GJB. (2015). ‘Commoning as Differentiated Publicness’ In: Commoning as Differentiated Publicness: emerging concepts of the urban and other material realities, In Footprint Delft Architecture Theory Journal, Volume 16, Delft, Techne Press, pp 1- 8.
DOI: .





Ongoing - G Bruyns (PI), Elkin, D., Wei, H., Kwok, B., Liu, S., et al. (2021). Volumetric Collaborative Research.

Ongoing - G Bruyns and Giencke, A. (2019). PolyU Teaching and Development Grant. : Vertical Studio – Undergraduate. Collaborative Digitally Advanced Learning Methodology.

Completed - “Model and the Lived, beyond the 60m2 mean. An Investigation into Hong Kong's Domestic Models as Representations of a Square Foot Societies.”

Completed - Contested Territorialisation, Hong Kong Urbanism of Ownership, Occupation and Spatial Tenure.

Completed - “Hong Kong - A Critical Urban Topography”. A morphological investigation into dense configurations of Hong Kong SAR.


proj_VB2021_PolyU_Events 3_Gerhardes Johannes B



  • Awards for Outstanding Achievement - Teaching (Team) Giencke, Anneli (Recipient), Bruyns, G (Recipient), Elkin, Daniel Keith (Recipient) & Hasdell, Peter (Recipient), Jul 2020
  • Jockey Club Design for Society Award, for Best Student Project in Environmental and Interior Design Unit, For mentorship for Commonality Living by Chan Wan Fei, Jul 2015
  • Dean’s Award for Outstanding Teaching Performance, 2014 / 2015. Jockey Club Design for Society, Jul 2015






Bruyns, GJB., and Kousoulas, S. (2022). Design Commons Practices, Processes and Crossovers. Design Research Foundation Series. Series Editor, Ilpo Koskinen and Pieter Vermaas. New York: Springer.


Bruyns, G., Graafland, A., (2012). African perspectives: (South) Africa: City, society, space, literature and architecture. Rotterdam: 010 Publishers.


Bruyns. GJB. (2011). Urban Dispositif, an Atlas of Spatial Mechanisms and the Contemporary Urban Landscape. A reading of movement as an interpretive device for urban form’. PhD Thesis, Delft University of Technology, IFOU series. ISBN 978-90-78658-16-0.


Healy, P., & Bruyns, G. (2006). De-/signing the urban: Techno-genesis and the urban image. Rotterdam: 010 Publishers.


Bruyns, GJB. & Read, SA. (2006). ‘The Urban Machine’. In: SA Read & C Pinilla Castro (Eds.). Visualizing the invisible; towards an urban space. Amsterdam: Techne Press, pp. 52-67. Peer reviewed.

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