Resources, Infrastructure Systems and built Environments

Department of Civil & Structural Engineering

Dr Danielle Densley Tingley

Senior Lecturer in Architectural Engineering

+44 (0) 114 222 5728

Department of Civil and Structural Engineering
Sir Frederick Mappin Building
Mappin Street,
S1 3JD


Danielle’s research focuses on reducing the whole life carbon of the built environment; particularly through the use of design for deconstruction and material reuse, material substitution and material efficiency. She is interested in the use of life cycle assessment, material flow analysis, applied urban metabolism and industrial ecology as methods to understand and reduce the material impacts of the built environment. As well as developing her own work in these fields, Danielle is currently working with Martin Mayfield to develop the University’s activities in UKCRIC.

Her previous roles have included leading the work on material efficiency in construction in the UK INDEMAND Centre at the University of Cambridge; where she worked with industry to understand the practical challenges and opportunities of reducing material demand in the built environment. She has also worked on the multi-disciplinary BIG Energy Upgrade Project at the University of Sheffield, exploring the environmental impacts of external wall insulation, advising partner Local Authorities on best practice retrofit.

Danielle’s PhD was in design for deconstruction and material reuse – specifically exploring the embodied carbon benefits of this strategy. During the course of her PhD she developed a web-tool, Sakura, to allow designers to quantify the embodied energy and carbon benefits of designing their own projects for deconstruction. Danielle’s undergraduate degree was in Structural Engineering and Architecture.


MEng, PhD

Research project(s)

White Rose Project

Understanding public perceptions and experiences of low carbon building materials. This project is a pilot study to explore public perception of low carbon building materials. It will investigate public understanding and perception of any direct benefits, co-benefits or drawbacks from using these materials, through a series of deliberative workshops. It...

Design for Deconstruction

This research assessed the sustainability benefits of design for deconstruction. Environmental assessment methods were identified as a way to incentivise design for deconstruction but presently they fail to do so. Quantifying the environmental benefits of design for deconstruction is necessary to encourage designers to consider the incorporation of design for...

Population, Growth, and Energy Demand: a Look at Scaling Effects and Agglomeration in the Northern Powerhouse

The recent drive to boost economic growth in the North of England rests upon the premise that through agglomeration effects achieved via better transport infrastructure and connectedness, the 15 million people of the “Northern Powerhouse” could begin to rival London’s economic performance. This, however, raises an immediate challenge: how much...

What is Sheffield made of?

To move towards improved resource efficiency in the built environment it is crucial to have an understanding of existing building stocks and material flows so that options to optimise these can be explored and implemented. However, this information is not currently available at the data resolution required so that all...


(2020). On the use of random graphs in analysing resource utilization in urban systems. The Royal Society , (Full Text)., Abstract: Urban resource models increasingly rely on implicit network formulations. Resource consumption behaviours documented in the existing empirical studies are ultimately by-products of the network abstractions underlying these models. Here, we present an analytical formulation and examination of a...
Ling Min Tan, Hadi Arbabi, Paul E Brockway, Danielle Densley Tingley, Martin Mayfield (2019). An ecological-thermodynamic approach to urban metabolism: Measuring resource utilization with open system network effectiveness analysis. Applied Energy, 254 (), (Full Text)., Abstract: Cities have evolved as centers of economic growth and often described as open systems where the intake of resources is heavily dependent on flows imported from the external environment. The question is, how much of the resource available in cities is effectively utilized? In response, this paper...
Tan, L.M.; Arbabi, H.; Li, Q.; Sheng, Y.; Densley Tingley, D.; Mayfield, M.; Coca, D. (2018). Ecological network analysis on intra-city metabolism of functional urban areas in England and Wales. Resources, Conservation and Recycling, 138 (), pp. 172-182. (Full Text)., Abstract: The UK has one of the world’s most urbanised societies where nearly 83% of the total population lives in cities. The continuing population growth could lead to increases in environmental pollutions and congestion within cities. The framework of urban metabolism uses an analogy between cities and...
(2017). The environmental impact of phenolic foam insulation boards. Proceedings of the Institution of Civil Engineers (London), 170 (2), pp. 91-103. (Full Text)., Abstract: The use of external wall insulation is on the increase, with phenolic foam being a popular insulation choice. However, if designers are to make informed decisions on material choices, the environmental impact of the insulation should be considered and the payback period of the associated impacts...
(2017). Understanding and overcoming the barriers to structural steel reuse, a UK perspective. Journal of Cleaner Production, 148 (3), pp. 642-652. (Full Text).
(2017). The wood from the trees: The use of timber in construction. Renewable & Sustainable Energy Reviews, 68 (1), pp. 333-359. (Full Text).
(2016). A multi-method approach for analysing the potential employment impacts of material efficiency. Resources, Conservation and Recycling, 109 (EN4), pp. 54-66. (Full Text).
(2015). An environmental impact comparison of external wall insulation types. Building and Environment, 85 (EN4), pp. 182-189.
(2011). Design for deconstruction and material reuse. Proceedings of the Institution of Civil Engineers, 164 (4), pp. 195-204.