Professor Maria Ignatieva

Started at UWA: 2018

Landscape architect and urban ecologist with extensive international experience

I love the opportunity to implement my research findings into real design and to pass my experience and knowledge to the young generation of landscape architects.Dr Maria Ignatieva

Dr Maria Ignatieva is a landscape architect and urban ecologist who teaches and researches at the UWA School of Design. She is head of the School's Architecture, Landscape Architecture and Urban Design department.

Her main research interests are urban ecology with particular emphasis on urban biodiversity and design, history of landscape architecture, and the restoration and conservation of historical gardens.

Maria also holds positions as Honorary Doctor of St. Petersburg State Forest Technical University, guest researcher at Humboldt University Berlin, and president of the URBIO (Urban Biodiversity and Design) Network.

She is a member of the Educational Committee of Australian Institute of Landscape Architects and the Advisory Circle of International Federation of Landscape Architects (IFLA).

Maria has lived and worked in Russia, the USA, New Zealand and Sweden.


  • BSc and MSc (Summa cum laude) 1982
  • PhD 1987
Research Repository

WA AILA Awards 2021

The AILA Landscape Architecture Awards program is a key vehicle for the promotion of the achievements and work of landscape architects in Australia. Shifting Sands Project has received the 2021 WA AILA Landscape Architecture Award for Small Projects.

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2019 Russian National Award in Landscape Architecture

Association of Landscape Architects of Russia (ALAROS) National Award in Landscape Architecture For Outstanding Professional Achievements and Community Service

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Green Flag Award

2017 Green Flag Award (UK) for realisation of lawn alternatives at the SLU Campus (Uppsala, Sweden)

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2013 Russian National Award in Landscape Architecture

2013 Russian National Award in Landscape Architecture: Best Publication of the Year for "The Gardens of Old and New World"




UWA Collaboration research grant

  • Interdisciplinary multiscale vision for a liveable, resilient and biophilic Perth


Formas (Sweden)

  • Lawn as an ecological and cultural phenomenon: Searching for sustainable lawns in Sweden


SLU Climate Project

  • Towards sustainable lawns: Searching for alternative cost effective and climate friendly lawns in Ultuna Campus

Find out more


Lawn as a cultural and environmental global phenomenon in Perth, Western Australia: Searching for sustainable solutions 

The Lawn is a Living Lab is a part of this project. The experimental site demonstrates the complex character of lawns as urban ecosystems. One aim of this installation is to educate students, the community and campus visitors about different types of lawns and management practices.

View the Lawn as Living Lab flyer


Towards biophilic, resilient green infrastructure: Perth as a case study

This project aimed to provide answers to the question: ‘How can we improve the resilience of green infrastructure through intelligent planting design, use of suitable construction materials, and appropriate spatial (design) language whilst being acceptable to urban dwellers?’ “Shifting Sands – a mobile interactive biophilic landscape” installation on UWA's Nedlands Campus is a tangible outcome of this project. This landscape design and art installation is a mixture symbol of a biophilic city where we make visible the considerate integration of design principles with natural and ecological processes. 

View the Shifting Sands brochure



Supervisor opportunities

Maria has been supervising PhD students for over 22 years, covering topics such as green spaces in Sweden, China and Australia. She welcomes expressions of interest from prospective postgraduate students interested in urban ecology and ecological design. Contact Maria at [email protected] to discuss further.

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