Browse Catapults
Transport System Catapult - Logo Home

Senior Urbanist

Type: full
Location: London
Reference: CPC-905129

Purpose of the role

The role is responsible for inventing project possibilities, locating and constructing consortia to make them happen, and leading teams to help deliver them. It will be involved in building our teams, too. Located within our wider multidisciplinary creative teams, featuring designers, architects, coders, makers and other researchers, the role works right across the Catapult and our various networks, helping connect, create and engage.

Strong project leadership, delivery and thought leadership skills are required, but as part of a well-rounded skillset based around particular subject matter expertise — in this case, a background in strategic design (and related disciplines: service design, architecture, urban planning and urban strategy, urban design, interaction design) and particularly as they apply to the interplay between new technologies and cities helping to develop the Advanced Urban Services sector and grow UK businesses.

Through our projects we will develop ‘near-future’ possibilities and ‘long-futures’, understanding the implications of the key drivers shaping cities in the 21st century.

Key Responsibilities

  • Content leadership of our multidisciplinary projects and programmes from inception to completion, ensuring they are transformational, meaningful and effective
  • A coherent approach to team and project management
  • Unlocking opportunities for the Advanced Urban Services (AUS) sector to grow UK businesses, using professional built environment experience
  • Provide specialist design and technology knowledge to understand and define city challenges
  • Steer project pipeline towards market-making opportunities and contribute to the creation of externally-funded projects
  • Contribute to the creation of an external collaborator/client’s new product/service, or viable product/service category
  • Work with the PMO and various delivery teams to ensure projects meet required milestones and deliverables
  • Represent FCC at national and international events with high-level stakeholders, promoting the opportunities for the AUS sector in the UK

Required skills and experience 

The skills range:  

  • from architecture, urbanism, futures, service design, design thinking, co-creation, concept generation, research and synthesis, stakeholder management, workshop design and facilitation, project management, visual communication and presenting. The role also requires high quality communication skills, making sure that the core messages of our projects get out there, directly shaping thinking, discussion and practice in the future cities and advanced urban services sector.
  • Bachelor’s Degree in architecture, urbanism or related design discipline
  • Master’s Degree in innovation/ management/ business planning
  • Critical and innovative thinking to unlock opportunities in the AUS sector
  • Experience delivering innovation projects and programmes and leading multi-disciplinary high performing teams
  • Experience implementing business change processes
  • Knowledge of high growth start-ups, particularly in the technology sector
  • Experience working with senior stakeholders in Government and Business
  • Business planning skills to implement cost effective projects that develop the scale of the AUS market
  • Good at managing relations with colleagues and stakeholders at all levels, being persuasive and approachable.

Role Specific

Leading a team – You’ll be leading and inspiring multidisciplinary project teams, working closely with a diverse group of talents, including external collaborators, to ensure that our projects are transformational, meaningful and effective. Over time, you’ll also be building teams, looking for new recruits, and managing them.

Creating and delivering projects – You’ll be running several projects at any one time, while creating and setting up the next set of projects to follow. You’ll be building networks that generate project possibilities, inventing projects, applying your expertise to shape them, and ensuring they hit home for clients, collaborators, citizens and other stakeholders.

Leading by design– We are a design-led team, and we use design principles such as user-research, iterative prototyping and thinking through making. You’ll be putting these skills into practice on our projects and acting as an advocate for design within the organisation.

Thought leadership– Our projects will develop cutting-edge thinking and practice — as well as making them happen, you’ll be communicating what the projects are about, what they mean, and how they will change thinking and practice in the future cities and advanced urban services sector. You’ll be constantly seeking out new ideas and inspiring people, and connecting them to projects, via clients and collaborators.

Building productive networks— You’ll be constantly plugged into industry networks, from start-ups to global firms, grant-funding bodies to municipal governments, across all the different aspects of future cities. You’ll be seen as a leader within the sector, as someone to go to both get things done and to find out where the state-of-the-art is. Project possibilities will emerge from these networks, and so you’ll actively cultivate them, through opportunity development, events and projects.


If you would like to apply for this role, please email your CV and covering letter, quoting the relevant job role you are applying for, to: