City Lab Barcelona studies the impacts of urban projects, policies and interventions using formal experiments and direct observation. We engage in applied research, direct action and partnership to learn about city dynamics.  

We undertake research projects that entail impact evaluation, tactical urbanism, experimentation or direct observation. Our mission is to generate applied knowledge that can accelerate the transition to sustainable urban planning and design.   

City Lab Barcelona is a research group at the Institute for Environmental Science and Technology at the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona (ICTA-UAB). 

Team

Jordi Honey-Rosés

Lead Researcher

Jordi Honey-Rosés is the lead researcher of City Lab Barcelona at the Institute of Environmental Science and Technology of the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona (ICTA-UAB). He is an environmental planner by training, specialized in urban impact evaluation. He has published widely on urban experiments and impact evaluation in leading international scientific journals and his teaching has been recognized with the prestigious University Killam Teaching Award from the University of British Columbia (UBC). Prior to joining ICTA-UAB, he was Associate Professor with tenure at the School of Community and Regional Planning at the University of British Columbia (2013-2021). He holds the appointment of Honorary Research Associate at the Institute for Resources, Environment and Sustainability (IRES) at UBC. He has university degrees in Political Economy (BA) and History (BA) from the University of California at Berkeley and a Master in Public Policy (MPP) from the Harvard Kennedy School. He earned his PhD in Regional Planning from the University of Illinois, Urbana Champaign.

Gemma Simón i Mas

Doctoral Researcher

Gemma Simón i Mas is a PhD student at the Institute for Environmental Science and Technology at the Autonomous University of Barcelona (ICTA-UAB), and a founding member of City Lab Barcelona. Her research is on urban cycling among children and youth and in particular their perceptions and experiences. As an urban cycling activist, she has led workshops and training events on cycling issues, and taken a leadership role as the Equity Coordinator for ConBici, a national cycling group in Spain. She has worked as a cycling instructor with the method 1Bici+ developed by Factoría de Ciclistas and has worked at the cycling cooperative Biciclot sccl (2018-2021). She has also worked with the Urban Ecology Agency of the City of Barcelona on the implementation of the Superblocks (Superilles) program. Her undergraduate degree is in Environmental Science from the University of Valencia and she holds a Masters Degree in Interdisciplinary Studies on Environmental, Economic and Social Sustainability from ICTA-UAB.

Joan Cholbi Grimalt

Intern

Joan Cholbi is a student in Smart and Sustainable City Management at UAB. He is interested in urban planning and design, with a particular focus on street calming and pedestrianization. He is also interested in data science and spatial data analysis. He is currently an intern at the City of Barcelona with the Protegim Les Escoles program.

Luca Liebscht

Intern

Luca Liebscht is an undergraduate degree student in Smart and Sustainable Cities at the Autonomous University of Barcelona (UAB). As the Bike Parking Intern at City Lab Barcelona, he assists in the development of a citizen science platform to share data on on-street bicycle parking in cities. Previously, he participated in a citizen science initiative coordinated by TRANSFORM, to develop a waste pilot for the municipality of Mollet. He is interested in geospatial analysis, website and application development, city planning, database management and citizen science.

Maya Hörner

Intern

Maya Hörner is an intern at the Institute for Environmental Science and Technology at the Autonomous University of Barcelona (ICTA-UAB), working on the "Life in Poblenou" project at the City Lab Barcelona. Before joining the team at ICTA, she graduated in "Urban Development and Design" (MSc) at the Bauhaus University in Weimar, where she did her thesis on environmental justice in disadvantaged communities of Santiago de Chile. She is interested in urban justice-related topics, environmental services, and sustainable community development.

Charlotte Wienberg

Intern

Charlotte Wienberg is pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Politics and International Relations at University College London (UCL). She is partaking in a project observing urban change in Poblenou, Barcelona, and analysing its social impact. Her further interests lie in international development and socio-economic policies.

Laura Vetter

Intern

Laura Vetter is an undergraduate degree student in Management of Smart and Sustainable Cities at the UAB Barcelona. She participated in a Citizen Science pilot about Waste management in Mollet del Vallès and contributed to a paper about the Impact of Citizen Science as a Tool to transform public policies. Furthermore, she did her internship in ScienceforChange, a SME dedicated to Participation Processes, where she has been working on the European Project TRANSFORM. Currently, she is employed as a work student at the ICTA UAB within a research project on bicycle behaviour in Barcelona.

Sultan Ahmed

Masters Student

Sultan Ahmed is a Master's degree student of Interdisciplinary Studies in Environmental, Economic and Social Sustainability, specialising in Industrial Ecology, at the Universitat Autonoma de Barcelona (ICTA-UAB). Holding a degree in civil engineering, he is interested in questions about the nature of performance evaluation of various types of intervensions; the social dimension interacting with the application of technical solutions; and the human realm that surrounds the technocratic cities of the future. His Master's thesis will evaluate the soundscape resulting from opening the streets of Sants, Barcelona to pedestrians, accessing in such the difference in the sound experience and the sense of place that is achieved when the streets are opened for people to walk on them. Sultan aims to take a holistic approach to scientific research that goes beyond the epistemic modus operandi of knowledge generation, opening up the process as such to the otherwise forgotten voices that are implicated by scientific inquiry.

Sara Martin

Masters Student

Sara Martín Bautista is a master’s degree student in Interdisciplinary Studies in Environmental, Economic and Social Sustainability with a specialization in Ecological Economics at the Autonomous University of Barcelona (ICTA-UAB). Her Masters thesis studies the bicibus projects that have recently emerged in Catalonia. She obtained her undergraduate degree in Political Science at the Universitat Pompeu Fabra (UPF) and her final thesis consisted in a comparative analysis of the governance and environmental policies in Spain and Italy. She has worked in the international public sector and in international policy analysis assessing the social impact generated through the SDGs. She is interested in public organisations, cities, governance and sustainable development models.

Research collaborators

Esther Anaya, Postdoctoral Researcher, Imperial College London 

Isabelle Anguelovski
, ICREA Research Professor, Institute for Environmental Science and Technology (ICTA-UAB) 


Andrea Ballbe Orti
, Urban Planner, City of Barcelona 

Alex Bigazzi, Associate Professor, Department of Civil Engineering, University of British Columbia 

Nathaniel Burnett, Programmer and Cyclist. Founder of bicycleparking.org

Vincent Chireh, PhD Student, Institute for Resources, Environment and Sustainability (IRES), University of British Columbia 

Esteve Corbera, ICREA Research Professor, Institute for Environmental Science and Technology (ICTA-UAB) 

Eduard Folch, Founder, Canvis en Cadena 

Leila Harris, Professor, Institute for Resources, Environment and Sustainability (IRES), University of British Columbia 

Oriol Marquet, Researcher, Universitat Autonoma de Barcelona  

Mark Nieuwenhuijsen, Director of the Urban Planning, Environment and Health Initiative, IS Global 

Victoria Ortega, Universidad Autónoma de Madrid 

Monica Ubalde, Postdoctoral Researcher, ISGlobal 

Guillem Vich, Postdoctoral Researcher, ISGlobal 

Helena Vilardell, Founder, Canvis en Cadena 

Join the team

We are open to prospective students who might be interested in joining our research group. We supervise students in the Masters and PhD program at ICTA and are also open to hiring UAB students for support on research projects.  

We are looking for students who are action oriented, self-starters, entrepreneurial, enjoy working with original data, good communicators, and eager to work to transform our cities to a more sustainable and healthier future.  

Positions are limited and competitive. We would like to keep the team moderately-sized so that we can work closely with every member of the lab. 

Successful applicants are likely to have the following qualifications: 

Prospective PhD students 

  • A master’s degree with high marks  
  • Demonstrated research interest related to City Lab Barcelona projects 
  • At least one academic paper accepted or submitted in peer-reviewed journal  
  • Excellent English language skills (for non-native English speakers minimum TOEFL or IELTS scores of 110 or 7.5, respectively)

Prospective Master students

  • A bachelor’s degree with high marks  
  • Research interest related to City Lab Barcelona projects
  • Excellent English language skills (for international students, minimum TOEFL or IELTS scores of 110 or 7.5, respectively)

If you would like to join our team, please follow these steps: 

  1. Review our recent work on this website to ensure it aligns with your research interests and goals
  2. For Masters students (especially current ICTA-UAB students), review the list of Proposed Research Projects 
  3. For prospective PhD students, review the admissions requirements and sources of funding to support your work
  4. Send an email to Jordi[dot]Honey[at]uab[dot]cat with: 
  • A subject line of “City Lab Barcelona Prospective Student: [surname]” 
  • A brief (1-2 paragraph) statement of your interest and qualifications in the body of the email
  • A CV (pdf attachment)
  • A one-paragraph (<250 word) summary of what you see in this figure and your interpretation of what might be inferred from pedestrian traffic flows at the four sites 

Thank you for your interest in City Lab Barcelona!