Huri Te Ao Hoahoanga - School of Future Environments
Aotearoa New Zealand
  PhD, BDes (Int Arch).  Author of Regenerative Urban Design and Ecosystem Biomimicry  
Auckland University of Technology

Te Wānanga Aronui O Tāmaki Makaurau

Dr Maibritt Pedersen Zari 


Associate Professor

Dr Maibritt Pedersen Zari is an Associate Professor at Huri Te Ao - The School of Future Environments, Auckland University of Technology, in Aotearoa New Zealand. Her research area of regenerative design redefines sustainable architecture and urban design through emulating ecosystems, working with ecologies and nature, and integrating complex social factors into architectural and urban design. Pedersen Zari's expertise include biomimicry, biophilia, urban ecosystem services, nature-based solutions, urban climate change adaptation, urban biodiversity, and climate sensitive vernacular architecture in the Himalayan region. Her most active current research stream relates to urban climate change adaptation in Oceania. She is the Primary Investigator for the Marsden funded project NUWAO (Nature-based Urban design for Wellbeing and Adaptation in Oceania) and leads a complex and diverse team aiming to co-design nature-based urban design solutions, rooted in Indigenous knowledges that support climate change adaptation and individual and community wellbeing in different contexts across Oceania (including Aotearoa). She is also an investigator on the Endeavor Fund RUN (Restoring Urban Nature) project where she is part of a team investigating residential development for urban biodiversity. Pedersen Zari is co-author / editor of Ecologies Design: Transforming Architecture, Landscape, and Urbanism (2020), author of Regenerative Urban Design and Ecosystem Biomimicry (2018), and co-author of Materials for a Healthy, Ecological and Sustainable Built Environment (2017).


My research explores how understanding ecosystem services can be used to define ecological design in the urban built environment with particular regard to how climate change and continued loss of global biodiversity affects architecture and communities. My expertise include: architectural and urban design biomimicry, biophilic design, ecosystem-based adaptation, urban climate change resilience and adaptation, particularly in the Pacific, nature-based solutions and ecosystem-based adaptation, and design for urban biodiversity.


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I teach in the Interior Architecture and Architecture design studios and in the Sustainable Architecture and Sustainable Engineering Building Science streams at both undergraduate and post graduate levels at Victoria University of Wellington's School of Architecture. I also co-direct the Te Ātea Spatial Justice Lab for masters students at the School of Architecture, and supervise several PhD candidates and international interns. 


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I have been involved in numerous academic and community engagement projects. 


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