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DONALD LESLIE BATES___________________________________________________

Prof. Donald L. Bates                                      

Born: Texas, USA (09.11.1953)

Citizenship: USA; France, Australia

Director – LAB Architecture Studio

Chair of Architectural Design – University of Melbourne, Architecture, Building and Planning

Associate Dean (Engagement) – University of Melbourne, Architecture, Building and Planning

education, qualifications and affiliations


Master of Architecture:               Cranbrook Academy of Art, Michigan USA (1980-83)

Bachelor of Architecture:            University of Houston, Texas USA (1972-78)

registered architect:                   ARBV; Architectural Registration Board Victoria (1997)

member:                                   LFRAIA – Life Fellow of Royal Australian Institute of Architects (current)

registered architect:                   ARB;    Architects Registration Board – UK (2006)

member:                                   FRIBA – Fellow of Royal Institute of British Architects (current)

significant work experience

Director – LAB Architecture Studio (1994-present). LAB Architecture Studio currently has projects or has completed projects in China, UAE, Saudi Arabia, Lebanon, the UK, Singapore, and Australia.  In addition, LAB has been shortlisted and awarded prizes on numerous international design competitions.  Projects range from single-family residences to high-rise residential and commercial offices, cultural and institutional complexes and large-scale sustainable master planning.  Completed projects and commissioned works have been published in a wide range of international publications and websites.

Important works include Federation Square (1997-2003).  This aud$480m project for the State of Victoria and the Melbourne City Council comprised a new civic space, art gallery, multimedia exhibition and production space, radio and television studios, as well as commercial facilities and covered public galleria. [www.labarchitecture.com]

Major completed or under construction works include:

  • SOHO ShangDu, Beijing (2007); commercial and mixed-use development of 170,000m2
  • SS100, Yantai (2009); commercial offices + retail of 70,000m2
  • POMO Centre, Singapore (2009); retail planning and façade design
  • Guardian Towers, Abu Dhabi (2011); commercial offices and residential development of 50,000m2
  • M*Shed, Museum of Bristol, Bristol (2011); museum and exhibition redevelopment of existing structure of 6,000m2
  • West Tai Lake International Business Plaza, Xitaihu, (2012); council administration offices and hotel of 27,300m2
  • Eden Garden, Beirut (2012); residential and retail of 26,200m2
  • Zovie II Towers, Tianjin (2013); commercial office, residential, hotel and retail of 224,000m2
  • GEI-3 Tower, Nanjing (2014); residential, hotel, business club and retail of 130,000m2
  • Huaian International Bicycle Park, Huaian, Jiangsu Province (2017); exhibition, conference and recreational precinct.

educational appointments

  • External Examiner, National University of Singapore (2016 – 2018)
  • Chair of Architectural Design, University of Melbourne, Melbourne School of Design (2012 – present). The Melbourne School of Design is the Graduate Degree platform of the Faculty of Architecture, Building and Planning at University of Melbourne.  As the Chair of Architectural Design, I am also the Programme Coordinator for the Master of Architecture degree and especially the M.Arch design studios.  The Chair of Architectural Design manages the pedagogical and administrative formation of the M.Arch degree, liaising with the Dean of ABP, the Deputy Dean, and the Director of the Melbourne School of Design (among others).  This role includes reviews and recommendations on electives and core courses, as well as the implementation of new courses, programs, workshops, events and exhibition – including professional accreditation with the Architects Registration Board of Victoria.
  • Associate Dean – Engagement; Faculty of Architecture, Building and Planning, University of Melbourne (2017 – present).
  • External Examiner, Hong Kong University (2011 – 2015)

speaking appointments

Lectures, seminars, reviews, workshops or programs at more than 210 universities and schools of architecture across Europe, North America, South America, Middle East and Asia and Australia.

advisory boards

  • Member – Business of Design Week – Hong Kong_Working Committee; State Government of Victoria (2017 – present)
  • Member – Metro Tunnel Arts Advisory Panel (2018 – 2020)
  • Acting Chair – Design Advisory and Review Group, University of Melbourne (current)
  • Member – Engagement @ Melbourne Academic Leadership Committee, UoM, (current)
  • Ambassador – LafargeHolcim Foundation for Sustainable Construction (current)
  • Member – University of Melbourne Academic Board (2013 – present)
  • Member – Board for the Research Unit for Public Cultures, Uni Melbourne (current)
  • Member – Victorian Design Review Panel, Victoria (2012 – present)


  • Jury Member – Australian Institute of Architects National Jury (2019)
  • Jury Member – Whitehorse Centre Design Competition (2019)
  • Jury Member – Shenzhen Xiangmihu Area Urban Design Competition (2018)
  • Jury member – New Student Precinct Design Competition (2018)
  • Head of Jury – City of Port Phillip Design & Development Awards (2018)
  • Jury Member – Governor of Victoria Export Awards Program (2013 – 18)
  • Head of Jury – LafargeHolcim Awards for Sustainable Construction – Asia Pacific (2017)
  • Jury Member – Shepparton Art Museum (SAM) Architecture Competition, (2016)
  • Jury Member – International Pearl Eco-Island Architecture Competition, China (2016)
  • Jury Member – FuturArc Prize (2016, 2015)
  • Jury Member – Green Leadership Award (2016, 2015)
  • Jury Member – Re:Imagine the Junction – student urban design, Melbourne (2015)
  • Jury Member – The University of Science and Technology of Hanoi, Vietnam (2014)
  • Jury Member – Australian Institute of Architects, Victoria; (2014)
  • Head of Jury – Vietnam German University; Hanoi, Vietnam (2013)
  • Head of Jury – Padide Kish; Kish Island, Iran (2013)
  • Jury Member – World Architecture Festival; Singapore, (2012)
  • Jury Member – Youth Olympic Center; Nanjing, China (2011)
  • Jury Member – HQ – PetroVietnam; Hanoi, Viet Nam (2011)
  • Jury Member – Hotel – Jebel Hafeet; Al Ain, UAE (2010)
  • Jury Member – Australian Institute of Landscape Architects – Victoria + Tasmania (2010)
  • Jury Member – Tower at Suk Al Thalath Al Gadeem; Tripoli, Libya (2007)
  • Jury Member – DTY_Urban Design Competition; Yerevan, Armenia (2008)
  • Jury member – European Patent Office; Den Haag, Netherlands (2004)
  • Head of Jury – Holcim Foundation – Asia-Pacific; Sustainable Construction Awards (2006)
  • Jury Member – Engineering Building; American University of Beirut (2006)
  • Jury Member – Issam Fares Institute; American University of Beirut (2006)
  • Head of Jury – Martyrs Square / Grand Axis; Beirut (2004-05)
  • Jury Member – Royal Australian Institute of Architects Awards, Victoria; (1999)
  • Jury Member – Royal Australian Institute of Architects Awards, Victoria; (1998)