My name is Linus. I am a designer and researcher specialising in architectural experiences, design cognition, and machine learning for design.

Current projects

For my previous projects, click here.

Architectural researcher and lecturer

I am an architecture lecturer and researcher at Swinburne University of Technology. I teach architectural communication and I research design cognition, and machine learning for design, experience-based architecture, and architectural allegories.

Managing director

I am the managing director of s’more design. At s’more design, we create humble, curated, and playful architectural experiences. We specialise in Food and Beverage interiors.

Research Projects

Click here to see my past research and publications.

Machine Learning for Architecture and Design

This research explores and measures how machine learning changes the way architects and design teams think, act, and learn about design. I am working on:

  • Using AI MidJourney to enhance divergent and convergent thinking in an architect’s creative design process
  • Integrating AI into design workflows: Assisting visual and verbal creativity in idea development
  • Using machine learning as a material to generate and refine aircraft design prototypes

Building high-performing architecture teams

This research examines the roles of team learning and reflective practice in the performance of architecture teams. I am working on:

  • Performance of architectural teams: The role of team learning, reflexivity, boundary crossing and error communication
  • Picking a design or a design team? The role of Reflective Practice and Team Learning in architecture competitions
  • Using Design Thinking to guide architectural team reflection
  • Advancing Donald Schon’s Reflective Practitioner: Where to next?


Click here to see my past design projects.

NExT Lab

for: Melbourne School of Design
type: Architecture
with: Fabrication Workshop

The NExT Lab is home to a cluster of 32 3D printers and offers 3D printing service to the University of Melbourne. The lab acts as a participatory “gallery” for experiencing new technology, provoking larger conversations about the future and technologies part in it. Throughout the day passers-by can observe the bank of 3D printers producing models continuously, along with a digital exhibition of projects on its walls to provide constant visual excitement and attraction.

view project

World Economic Forum, Teh Tarik Man

for: Red Hong Yi
type: Installation
with: One Design Office

Red Hong Yi is an international artist who ‘paints without a brush’ and is known to create artworks using everyday objects. In 2015, she was commissioned to represent Malaysian culture as an artwork at the World Economic Forum. For the showcase, she illustrated the Teh Tarik Man (Malaysian barista) with 20,000 used tea bags. Photographs of the ‘Tarik Man’ were taken, pixelated and coded to create instructions on how the tea bags were arranged and assembled.

view project

Southbank by Beulah Architecture Competition

for: Southbank by Beulah
type: Competition brief writing
with: One Design Office

As the population grows and lifestyles change and evolve, so too does the need for development designed for current and future generations. Beyond Melbourne, cities are beginning to display positive efforts of future-proofing by using big data and employing smart interventions. Architects, designers and engineers play an ever-important role in being able to shape communities and optimise lifestyles. Contextualised, these solutions tend to be climatically and culturally specific, adding layers onto the richness of a city’s past. So how do we future proof Melbourne? How do we ensure the viability of life through exponential growth?

view project

Masda Piezo Oasis

for: Land Art Generator Abu Dhabi
type: Architecture
with: Prof Justyna Karakiewicz, Prof Tom Kvan, Dr Elena Vanz

In a barren landscape springs a cluster of trees, leaves and fronds swaying in the wind. Oases are a source of life-giving resources, places of shade and respite, opportunities for calm and contemplation. This oasis converts a site in Masdar city into an oasis that provides energy. Shaded by the branches and leaves, the ground plane echoes traditional gardens while overhead piezo harvesters gather energy from the movement of air. This is piezo oasis, translating the natural form into an urban experience with the aid of piezo technology.

view project


Click here to see my past teaching.

Creative Entrepreneurship

for: Swinburne University of Technology
with: Dr Clementine Thurgood

I teach design students entrepreneurial thinking skills to examine current economical situations, speculate on future opportunities and develop business models, products and services.

Procedural Design Strategies

for: University of Melbourne
with: Prof Justyna Karakiewicz, Onur Tumturk, Siavash Malek

Designing urban proposals while creating intimate city experiences is a challenging task that involves designing on two different scales. By using procedural design strategies, small spatial designs can be aggregated to form large building typologies. I provide technical assistance to Master of Architecture students on using generative design tools (Grasshopper) to develop such architecture and urban proposals for their design studios.

3D Scanning and Printing

for: Swinburne University of Technology
with: Chen Canhui, Ravi Bessabava

Can we leverage natural systems in our design workflows? How can we capture organic forms and biological textures that are challenging to model using computer software? What outcomes do we get when we merge multiple systems together? In this subject, we learn 3D scanning techniques, digital design modelling, and 3D prototyping tools to explore and materialise design ideas.

Bio-digital Futures

for Institute for Advanced Architecture of Catalonia (IAAC)
with: Chen Canhui, A/Prof John Sadar

Can the living replace the non-living? Can the natural replace the artificial? Can structures be grown? In this summer school, we explore how mycelium can be used with digital design and fabrication techniques for the construction industry.


Unknown Futures: What design can teach us about navigating uncertainty

for: Design Factory Melbourne Research Insights

It is undeniable that technologies are replacing our workforces. Labour-intensive roles are gradually being replaced by automated technologies whereas artificial intelligence is endangering roles once thought to be safe from the machines. Without a doubt, the future of work is yet to be set in stone. Perhaps, it will never be. With such uncertainties ahead of us, how can design make us future-ready?

Knowledge strategies for architects

for: Design Research Society Conference

Traditionally, architects work independently to design a building. By reflecting on past projects, they build their individual knowledge, which carries into their future creation through best practices and experiential insights. Now, architects often design in teams. This opens up the broad question, how do architecture teams contribute their individual knowledge to a project effectively and without conflict?

Business strategies for architects

for: Swinburne University of Technology

What is a business strategy? How do you use it? When is it time to change it? And how do you know if it is working? Many architects work without a business plan, and many more without a business strategy. But without a strategy, how do you know where the business is going?

Finding and using ambiguity to search for innovation opportunities

for: Australian Centre for Exntrepreneurship Research Exchange

Typically, entrepreneurs discover business opportunities by defining the problem, ideating, then validating their prototypes. However, there is also a lesser-known approach, which is to keep the problem vague for as long as possible so that opportunities emerge from its ambiguity.

Giving back

Australasian Early Career Urban Research Network

With six other Melbournian researchers, we organise activities that connect and engage with other urban researchers in Victoria. Check out what we do here.

Relief Brigade

I help the charity deliver positive change on rural Philippines communities by creating and coordinating their online donation campaigns. You can help too, by donating here.

Out for Australia

I help individuals in the LGBTIQ+ community grow professionally by navigating with them through their career challenges and opportunities. You can connect with me via mentorloop.

Say hi!

Ask me anything via email. If you like, I am also reachable on ResearchGate, Twitter, and Linkedin.

Keen to collaborate? Ask me anything and I will prepare a capability pack for you.
Or have a look at the services I offer here.

© 2023 Linus Tan

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Kulin Nations (Melbourne, Australia)

I live and work on the lands of the Wurundjeri People of the Kulin Nation. I pay my respects to Wurundjeri Elders past, present, and emerging. This always was and always will be Aboriginal land.