Nuno Pinto

Nuno Pinto


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Personal profile


Nuno Pinto is Senior Lecturer in Urban Planning and Urban Design at the School of Environment, Education and Development of The University of Manchester, United Kingdom.
Nuno holds a PhD in planning from the School of Architecture of Barcelona, BarcelonaTech, Spain and he is a chartered Civil Engineer (University of Coimbra, Portugal) by the Portuguese Board of Engineers.
Prior to his current position, he was an Assistant Professor at the Group of Spatial Planning, Transportation and Road Design of the Department of Civil Engineering of the Faculty of Sciences and Technology of the University of Coimbra, Portugal, where he taught Urban and Regional Planning and Urban Design, and a Teaching Assistant and Researcher at the Department of Civil Engineering of the Polytechnic Institute of Leiria, Portugal.
Nuno had the support of a grant from the Portuguese Fundação para a Ciência e Tecnologia for conducting his PhD research.
Nuno was the recipient of the Breheny Prize for the best paper in 2010 in Environment and Planning B: Planning and Design, a leading academic journal in the field of urban modeling and urban planning.
Nuno is a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy.

Memberships of committees and professional bodies

Fellow of the Higher Education Academy

Member of the Portuguese Board of Engineers (Civil Engineering Chapter)

Research interests

My main research interests focus on the use of quantitative approaches to urban planning, namely on:
  • Decision support in urban planning
  • Urban simulation
  • Integrated urban and transport planning
  • Quantitative methods in urban planning
  • Big data in urban planning
  • Urban planning and planning policies
  • Urban design

Other research


  • “RBOC N+ Resilience Beyond Observed Capabilities Network+”, CoI, UoM Coordinator (4 Co-Is), EPSRC and MoD, 2022-2025, UoM Budget £663,778.30
  • “A VR analytics framework to assess the user experience of digital twins”, CoI, Turing-Manchester 2022, £19,760.43
  • Better decision support for better urban governance: the case of the IMEPLAN in Guadalajara, Mexico Better decision support for better urban governance: the case of the IMEPLAN in Guadalajara, Mexico”, PEM Research Fund 2021
  • “Better decision support for better urban governance: the case of the Coletivos in Brazil”, SEED Research recovery Fund 2021
  • “Synthetic Cities - Synthetic digital twins for cities for urban and transport simulation”, PI, UoM-TAU Fund, 2021-2022, £4,959.98
  • Peri-cene Peri-urbanization and climate-environment change, NERC TaSE Call 2018, 2019-2021, Co-I
  • "Resilience in urban mobility, FAPESP-University of Manchester SPRINT fund, 2018-2020, PI
  • “COST TU1408 – Air Transport and Regional Development (ATARD)” Project funded by COST ESF, Proponent and National Delegate, 2014-2018
  • "Eco-Urbanisation: promoting sustainable development in metropolitan regions of China", ESRC Urban Transformation in China Newton Grant, Fund 2016-2019, PI Prof Cecilia Wong, Co-I
  • “Understanding the Liverpool-Manchester-Leeds polycentric urban system using urban simulation models”, SEED Research and Impact Stimulation Fund 2014/2015, Coordinator
  • “COST TU1002 – Accessibility Instruments for Planning Practice in Europe” Project funded by COST ESF, National Delegate, 2010-2014
  • “Desarrollo de una Plataforma para el Modelado Prospectivo de los Procesos de Urbanización en las Zonas Costeras”, Project funded by the Spanish Ministry of Education and Science, Team member, Technical University of Catalonia, Spain, 2010-2013
  • “COST TU0602 – Land Management for Urban Dynamics” Project funded by COST ESF, Junior Researcher, 2007-2010
  •  “SOTUR - Strategic Options for Integrating Transportation and Land Development Innovations for Sustainability”, Project funded by the MIT-Portugal program for Transportation, Team member, University of Coimbra, Portugal, 2007-2009


I welcome applications from students who are interested in exploring the use of quantitative approaches applied to planning

I also welcome applications from students who want to do research in planning in the context of Iberian and Latin-American countries

Prospective candidates are invited to send me an email with a research proposal at any time. Please see also how to apply to a PhD at SEED and P&EM here.


Former students

Dr Aya Badawy, "Simulating the Behaviours of Urban Negotiators Using Agent-based Modelling", (Main Supervisor with Prof Richard Kingston), 2022

Dr Wenshi Yang, "Planning for Shrinking Cities in China: the case of Fushum", (Main supervisor with Prof Cecilia Wong), 2020

Dr Moozhan Shakeri, "Online serious gaming as a tool for participation in planning" (Co-supervisor with Prof Richard Kingston) 2017

Current PhD Students

Mr Yahia Gamalaldin, "Informal Urban Growth: An Analytical Descriptions Based Adaptive Simulation Model for Greater Cairo", (Co-Supervisor with Prof Deljana Iossifova (Arch))

Mr Antonio Ross, "Integrating data and simulation towards a mobility services decision support system", (Main Supervisor with Neil Walton (Maths))

Mr Harry Odell, "Understanding the construction of metropolitan areas through data analytics: the case of GMCA", (Main Supervisor with Dr Iain Deas and Dr Eva Navarro Lopez (U Wolverhampton))

Mr Ron Bar-Add, "Digital twinning for urban evaluation: the cases of Belval and Manchester" (Main Supervisor with Dr Markel Vigo (CompSc))

Mr Thomas Harris, "Constructing a Model for Smart City Strategy Building in Latin American Cities", (Co-supervisor with Prof Richard Kingston)



Nuno's teaching focuses on the development and use of quantitative approaches and methodologies to urban planning and spatial analysis.

This includes multiple approaches using data, geographical information systems (GIS) and decision-support methods applied to a multitude of problems in planning, transport, development and environmental issues.

Activities and esteem

Associate Editor: Regional Science, Regional Students

Member of the Scientific Committee of the Doctoral Programme in Urban Management and Valoration, School of Architecture of Barcelona, Technical University of Catalonia, Barcelona

Units taught

PLAN60761/40761 Applied Spatial Analysis: MPLAN, MPREMSc Planning, MSc Urban Regeneration and Development, MSc Data Science (Applied Urban Analytics Pathway)

PLAN60962/44032 Decision Support Systems in PlanningMPLANMPREMSc PlanningMSc Urban Regeneration and DevelopmentMSc Data Science (Applied Urban Analytics Pathway)Msc Global Urban Development and Planning

PLAN60090&EVDV60890&PLAN60380&60390&60480&60550&60560 PEM PGT Dissertation ALL PEM Msc programmes

DATA70202 Applying Data Science: MSc Data Science (all pathways)

DATA71011 Understanding Data and their Environment: MSc Data Science (all pathways)

DATA70002 Understanding Data and its Environment: CDT Data Analytics and Society

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 11 - Sustainable Cities and Communities
  • SDG 13 - Climate Action
  • SDG 15 - Life on Land
  • SDG 16 - Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions

External positions

Research Fellow, Luxembourg Institute of Socio-Economic Research (LISER)

1 Jan 202131 Dec 2023

Areas of expertise

  • G Geography (General)
  • Urban and Regional Planning
  • Transport Planning
  • Urbanism
  • GA Mathematical geography. Cartography
  • Urban Simulation
  • Quantitative Geography
  • Geographic Information Science

Research Beacons, Institutes and Platforms

  • Institute for Data Science and AI
  • Digital Futures
  • Sustainable Futures
  • Manchester Urban Institute


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  • 2011 Breheny Prize

    Pinto, Nuno (Recipient), 2011

    Prize: Prize (including medals and awards)