Professor Ray Green began his career in the visual fine arts before switching to landscape architecture, receiving a Bachelor of Science in Landscape Architecture (Cum Laude), a Master of Landscape Architecture and a Doctorate of Philosophy. His doctoral research focused on blending landscape planning and design practice with methods of enquiry adopted from environmental psychology. Prior to joining the University of Melbourne in 1999 he was with the Australian Housing and Urban Research Institute (AHURI). Between 2004 and 2009 he was a member of the Australian Research Council’s Network in Spatially Integrated Social Science (ARCRNSISS) and since 2008 a member of the Australian Climate Change Adaptation Research Network for Settlements and Infrastructure (ACCARNSI). In 2011-2012 he served as an executive member of the Melbourne Sustainable Society Institute (MSSI). He is currently a board member for EnviroDevelopment, an Urban Development Institute of Australia (UDIA) program that provides independent verification of the sustainability credentials of major Australian development projects.
From 2001 to 2006 Ray headed up the Faculty of Architecture Building and Planning's Landscape Architecture programs at the University of Melbourne in which he currently teaches design studio and theory. He has also lead multidisciplinary traveling design studios, including two to Patagonian Chile (2009 and 2011) and one to Malaga, Spain (2013). In addition, he supervises PhD students undertaking research into a wide range of topic areas, from public perceptions of various landscape setting types (e.g. wetlands, botanical gardens, urban parks.) to children’s conceptions of natural environments in urban settings, all of which are aimed at helping to inform ecologically and socially responsible environmental design and planning decision-making.
Prior to focusing on research, Ray spent 12 years in landscape architectural practice and is credited with numerous projects in the United States, Mexico, various South East Asian countries and Australia. In 2012 he was made a Fellow of the American Society of Landscape Architects in recognition of his accomplishments in the field; an honour bestowed on him, in the words of the ASLA Council of Fellows Executive Committee, for his:
“...substantial landscape architecture research, teaching, and practice. His most noteworthy achievements have come from his generation of fresh insights and how he shares those widely though international publications, speaking engagements, and work across a range of professional communities. His research has revealed, for instance, how various communities react to rapid environmental transformation from tourism and population shifts, which is especially critical with fragile coastlines, wetlands, and mountains. He also studies the benefits of ecotourism as it increases the contact with nature of an increasingly urban population.”
While his academic research is multidisciplinary in nature, his primary concern is in exploring environment-behaviour issues related to land development and conservation, climate change mitigation and adaptation and the health benefits associated with human contact with nature in urban settings. For example, the design for the new Royal Melbourne Children's Hospital was based on a design framework he developed for the Victorian Department of Human Services.
Ray is the author of the book Coastal Towns in Transition: Local Perceptions of Landscape Change (Springer: Dordrecht, The Netherlands, 2010) and co-editor of Towards Low Carbon Cities in China: Urban Form and Greenhouse Gas Emissions (Routledge: London, 2015), and co-author of The Green City: Sustainable Homes, Sustainable Suburbs (University of New South Wales Press: Sydney, and Routledge: London, 2005) and Design for Change (Melbourne, 1985). His work has also been presented at numerous international conferences and published in various landscape architecture, urban planning and environmental psychology journals.
Some frequently cited journal articles include:
- ‘Place Character and Climate Change along Australia's Great Ocean Road’ (Places: Forum of Design for the Public Realm, vol. 20, no. 2, 2008);
- ‘Community perceptions of environmental and social change and tourism development on the Island of Koh Samui, Thailand' (Journal of Environmental Psychology, vol. 25, no. 1, 2005);
- ‘Meaning and form in community perception of town character’ (Journal of Environmental Psychology, vol. 19, no. 4, 1999).
- ‘Exploring landscape changes using an envisioning system in rural community workshops. Co-authored with Bishop, I and Stock, C. (Landscape and Urban Planning (79): 229-239).
Ray has been a Chief Investigator on several large research grants, including two Australian Research Council Discovery grants: ‘Configuring low carbon cities in China’ (2010-2014) and ‘Involving local communities in defining town character in Victorian coastal towns” (2003-2005) and a Land and Water Australia (LWRRDC) project entitled ‘Community exploration of changing landscape values’ (2001-2003). Other projects include ‘Communicating Climate Effectiveness: improving local development and climate change project effectiveness using mobile phones in the Nadi Basin, Fiji’ and ‘Perceived contribution of street trees to neighbourhood character in an inner-city suburb of Melbourne’.
Further insights into Professor Green’s research can be found at: