Mark Parsons

BA (Hons), Dip.Arch, ARB

School of Architecture

University Teaching Practitioner

Mark Parsons

Full contact details

Mark Parsons
School of Architecture
Arts Tower
Western Bank
S10 2TN

Since qualifying from the University of Sheffield I worked in a number of London practices before returning to Sheffield in 2005.

I am one of the founders and directors of Studio Polpo, the UK's first architectural practice to be set up as a social enterprise in 2008, producing research, initiating projects and working with the third sector. Studio Polpo are also one of the organisations behind Chopshop, a CNC design and fabrication facility. I have also worked for, and with, Architype for a number of years, an award winning practice with a strong reputation for sustainable architecture and particular expertise in the design of educational environments. Projects with them have included a Passivhaus school near Leeds, a Passivhaus church building in Sheffield, and a Sheffield co-housing development in partnership with Studio Polpo.

Teaching interests

My teaching is strongly informed by my practice work, and the dialogue and engagement with students and teaching also informs my practice. I am interested in how student work and research can be disseminated to the public, in student engagement with building and full scale projects (and set up the Make.Design.Work site as a resource) and am also a member of the Architects Climate Action Network, and keen to ensure how we can address the climate emergency as practitioners and educators.

Teaching activities

I enjoy working across all parts of the School of Architecture (where I have been a design tutor since 2005), teaching in the first and second year of the Undergraduate course; the Masters in Sustainable Architectural Studies course; and the MArch, where I have mentored M.Arch Live Projects and provided construction technology tutorials. I currently teach in Second Year of Undergraduate, and tutor MA Architectural Design Thesis projects, as well supervising undergraduate special studies and MArch dissertations. 

Professional activities

AECB (Association for Environment Conscious Building)