Dr John Rollo



Honorary Fellow


Faculty of Sci Eng & Built Env


School of Archit. & Built Env.


Geelong Waterfront Campus


Doctor of Philosophy, University of Cambridge, 1997
Master of Architecture, UCLA, 1992
Bachelor of Architecture, Deakin University, 1990
Bachelor of Arts (Architecture), Deakin University, 1988
Bachelor of Arts (Politics), La Trobe University, 1985


+61 3 522 78329


John Rollo is the discipline leader for urban design with the school of Architecture and the Built Environment at Deakin University. With a focus on place making and the perception and visualization of the built environment, he has been providing public sector based urban design research for over fifteen years. He holds qualifications at both Master’s and Doctorate levels from the Graduate School of Architecture and Urban Planning at University of California, Los Angeles, and the Martin Centre for Land Use and Built Form Studies at Cambridge University. John has been successfully running the 'Urbanheart Surgery' urban design studio since 1999 which helps to generate discourse on contemporary urban issues between governments, communities, the design professions and higher education. This program has facilitated over fourteen planning and design forums with nine municipalities in regional Victoria and metropolitan Melbourne.

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Biography summary

• School of Architecture and Built Environment, Deakin University
 Senior lecturer: Urban Design, Planning & Architecture   1998 Cont
• School of Architecture and Built Environment, Deakin University
Interim Head of School October 2007- February 2009
• University of Bath - School of Architecture & Civil Engineering   1995- 98
Full Time Lecturer: History and Theory & Design,
• University of Greenwich - School of Architecture and Landscape 1994- 95
Specialist Lecturer: Formal Theories of Composition, writing and coordinating
workshops in Shape Grammars to the M Sc, Urban Design programs
• University of East London - Faculty of Design and the Built Environment  1993-94 Specialist Lecturer: Formal Theories of Composition
• University of Cambridge, Faculty of Architecture 1992- 95,
Sessional Lecturer: Elementary Mathematics,
Undergraduate Supervisor: Fundamental Principles of Structural Design
• Sydney University - Department of Architectural and Design Sciences 1992. RA  to Dr R. Coyne ARC: The impact of Information Technology on Design Practices
• University of California, Los Angeles Graduate School of Architecture and Urban Planning 1990- 92, RA to Professor T. Knight:  Transformations of Design, Cambridge University Press (1994)


  • Planning Institute of Australia
  • Australian Institute of Architects

Knowledge areas

  • Urban Design
  • Architecture 

Professional activities

Government Publications and Reports

Port Melbourne Waterfront & Station Pier Precinct -Vision &Directions Paper, City of Port Phillip & Port of Melbourne Corporation working group - (May 2006)
Port Melbourne Waterfront Revitalisation - Beacon Cove Precinct Committee for the Minister for Planning (2004-05), City of Port Phillip & Department Sustainability and Environment (DSE)
Beacon Cove Public Open Space Strategic Framework -
(Foreshore Promenade and Stage 8 sandridge Beach Desiogn Articulation) (2004), City of Port Phillip & DSE
What If? From Sandridge Beach to Bay Street- Visions of Port Melbourne
 Vision Scoping Document, City of Port Phillip, (August 2003)
Footscray Skyline Study – Stage 2 - City of Maribyrnong (2002)
What If? Kingsway Corridor, Parting the Weave and inserting New Threads,Vision Scoping paper, City of Port Phillip, Vision Scoping paper (2001)
St Kilda Foreshore Urban Design Framework, City of Port Phillip
(December 1999-2003)

Industry Focused Seminars, Presentations & papers

• Urban Design Forum - (May 2013) “Teaching of Urban Design Skills in Victoria”. Rollo J (Deakin University), Dovey K – (Melbourne University), Gretchen W (RMIT)
• Esteban Y, Rollo J (April 2005) Sustainable in 2030? The impact of population growth on residential built form in and around Melbourne’s inner activity centres. National Planning Congress, Melbourne.
• Honey S, Rollo J, Atkinson (April 2005), Planning for ember attack at Rural/urban Interface, National Planning Congress, Melbourne.
• Urban Design Forum - (April 2005) , Department Sustainability and Environment. Rollo J  “The Offspring of Tame Sow and Wild Boar
What is the Best Conceptual Framework for Doing Urban Design?”
• Toussaint C, Rollo J (Sept 2004) Federally funded aged care provision in regional Victoria: Examining current Provision and Estimating Future Requirements using Population-Based Benchmarks, Australian Population Association, 12th Biennial Conference, Australian National University
• Urban Design Forum - (Sept 2003), Department Sustainability and Environment, Rollo J (Sept 2003) “What Should Universities be Teaching?”
• Toussaint C, Rollo J (Sept 2003) Public Open Space (POS) Provision,
CBCV Community Business Centres of Victoria Conference, Melbourne
• Rollo J, Esteban Y (Sept 2003) “Making Dreaming Affordable - Cutting the Cost on Vision Making: CBCV
• Rollo J, Honey S (August 2003) “The Urban and Rural Interface: Assessing Air Pressure Differences on Building Form Subjected to Ember Attack”  - Australian Safer Communities Awards.
• Rollo J (November 2002) ECO-ISLAND: Urban Heart Surgery 2002 Uncharted Territory and Unlimited Horizons. Architect Victoria
(November Ed. Rollo J, Veron D
• curator, Royal Australian Institute of Architects
SMALL exhibition (Dec 2001)
• Rollo J (March 2001) Grounding the Urban Design Framework.
Royal Australian Institute of Architects, LAN, Bendigo.
• Vernon D, Rollo J, (2000) Working in the Regions: Traces of the Regional City Drawing on Bendigo.  Architect Victoria, (Requested and Accepted) Sept 2000
• Smith C, Swanton K, Rollo J (1999) The Encounter, Drawing on Port Phillip
Architect Victoria, Sept, pp.16-17



Vice Chancellors Award (collaborative)  2009
Outstanding Contribution to Delivering Effective Partnerships 
Vice Chancellors Award (collaborative)  2009
Outstanding Contribution through “Innovation”

Emergency Management Australia   2003
Australian Safer Communities, Pre-disaster research - National Award
Modelling Ember Attack Within The Urban Rural Interface

City of Port Phillip, Design Development Award.
Mayor’s Award – Urban Design 2000


UrbanHeart Surgery’ –“What If?”  -

Graduate Urban Design Studio - School of Architecture and Built Environment
Facilitation & Coordination of the following LGA based Design Research Forums:

• Torquay Town Centre - Surf Coast Shire 2013
• G21 Winchelsea “What If?” population 1,250 – 10,000 (2013-2050) - Surf Coast Shire 2013
• Re discovering the Neighbourhood Centre - High street Belmont - City of Greater Geelong 2012
• Peripheral Vision Looking to the River – Werribee Town Centre - City of Whyndham 2011
• Visions for Bendigo – City of Greater Bendigo 2004
• Visions for Maribyrnong - City of Maribyrnong 2004
• Visions for South Melbourne and port Melbourne - City of Port Phillip 2004
• Regional Urbanism / Warrnambool Heart Beats - Warrnambool 2003
• Visions for Port Melbourne - City of Port Phillip 2003
• Shakespear Grove and West Beach - City of Port Phillip 2003
• Urban Villages / Urban Injections - City of Port Phillip 2002
• Regional Urbanism / Ballarat Heart Beats - Ballarat 2002
• Western Wedge - Geelong 2002
• Crossing the Political Boundary - Melbourne City & Port Phillip 2001
• Urbanism on the Periphery / Drawing on Werribee - Wyndham 2001
• Eco Island - City of Port Phillip 2000
• Finding the Pulse, Urban Heart Beats – Bendigo 2000
• Urban Heart Surgery -Uncharted Territories Unlimited Horizons
  City of Port Phillip 1999


No publications found

Funded Projects at Deakin

Other Public Sector Funding

Foundational principles and approaches to building better suburbs (Wyndham City Council)

Prof Louise Johnson, Dr Fiona Andrews, A/Prof Phil Connors, Prof Hisham Elkadi, Dr John Rollo, Dr Ian Warren

  • 2012: $25,000

Wyndham 2040 and Urban Design Assessment for a 21st Century Future (Draft).

Dr John Rollo, Dr Yolanda Esteban

  • 2019: $9,500


No completed student supervisions to report