Professor Dan Hill

Director, Melbourne School of Design


Professor Dan Hill is a designer, urbanist, educator and experienced leader at the intersection of design, technology and cities. Dan held the position of Director of Strategic Design for the Swedish Government’s innovation and research agency, Vinnova from 2019 to 2022.

His previous leadership positions have produced innovative, influential teams and projects, ranging across built environment and architecture (two stints at Arup, Future Cities Catapult), education and research (Fabrica, AHO, UCL), government and social innovation (SITRA, Vinnova), and media (BBC, Domus, Monocle). He was one of the Mayor of London’s inaugural Design Advocates, and a Trustee of Participatory City Foundation, and is a founding member of the UN HABITAT Council for Urban Initiatives. Dan’s projects take a holistic approach to multidisciplinary research and design combined with an acute reading of everyday technologies and social infrastructures.

Dan has lived and worked in UK, Australia, Finland, Italy, and Sweden, and developed and delivered city strategy and urban development projects for city governments in Amsterdam, Melbourne, Stockholm, Manchester, Sydney and London, as well as for Alphabet and Lendlease. He has devised and delivered place-based approaches to Swedish and Finnish national innovation strategies. Dan has particular expertise in designing social and cultural infrastructures, in urban contexts such as Melbourne Innovation District, Manchester’s Northern Quarter, Google’s global campuses, and the University of Melbourne campus, and on buildings such as the Victoria & Albert Museum, British Library, UAE Museum of the Future, State Library of Queensland, ACMI, Collingwood Yards, and central library strategies for Melbourne and Sheffield.

Dan has held roles as Professor at the Oslo School of Architecture and Design, Visiting Professor of Practice at UCL Institute for Innovation and Public Purpose, Visiting Professor at Design Academy Eindhoven, and Adjunct Professor at RMIT University. He has taught studios and courses at other colleges all over the world. Amidst much published work, in academic journals, books and media, Dan authored the influential book “Dark Matter & Trojan Horses: A Strategic Design Vocabulary” for Strelka Press in 2012 and has been writing about design, technology, cities and culture for over 20 years.

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