Derya Oktay is currently a Professor of Architecture and Urban Design at the Department of Architecture and the Dean of the Faculty of Architecture at Ondokuz Mayıs University, Samsun, Turkey. Prior to her current position, she was the Director of the MS in Urban Design Programme and a professor at Eastern Mediterranean University, North Cyprus, and the Founding Director of the Urban Research & Development Center (URDC) at the same institution (1999-2013). In addition, she has served as the President of the Society for International Development (SID) Lefkosa Chapter in Cyprus. Dr. Oktay is a licensed architect and urban designer in Turkey, and trained at Gazi University, Middle East Technical University, Oxford Brookes University, UK and Yildiz Technical University.
Her areas of research are sustainable urbanism and architecture, cultural-spatial aspects of cities housing environments, urban identity, public urban spaces and liveability and quality of urban life, beside her main field of expertise urban design. She was a team member in various urban and architectural design projects and juries, and was a Visiting Scholar in such universities as UC Berkeley, Politecnico di Milano, University of Michigan, and Oxford Brookes University. She has experience in both qualitative and empirical research funded by the EU, USAID, TUBITAK, and EMU. She has authored more than 100 publications including books, chapters in refereed books, refereed journal articles, conference papers and popular press articles, and developed and offered courses. Professor Oktay’s academic experience includes teaching courses on architectural design in urban/local/different contexts, urban design, sustainable development, socio-cultural aspects of housing environments and public spaces. She is on the editorial board of various refereed journals, and the champion/editor of the two special issues of Urban Design and Planning journal on the themes of ‘Quality of Life in Cities’ and ‘Urban Identity in the Era of Globalisation’.