The Chinese University of Hong Kong Department of History Department of History
Contact Us

Associate Professor, Department of History, CUHK
Vice Chairman (External)

Room 112, 1/F, Fung King Hey Building, CUHK, Shatin, N.T., Hong Kong
(852) 3943 7116

Ian Morley is an Associate Professor in the Department of History, and Associate Professor (by Courtesy) on CUHK’s Urban Studies Programme. From 2020-2 he was the CUHK Faculty of Arts e-Learning Liaison Officer.

Prof. Morley has published widely on the design of built environments, participated in TV documentaries for The Discovery Channel and Voom!, as well as been interviewed by The Wall Street Journal Asia, The Los Angeles Times, Southeast Asia Globe, La Stampa and the US’ National Public Radio. In 2022 he was a presenter on the National Geographic’s Shaped by Nature series. In addition, he has contributed to media outlets such as Hong Kong News, South China Morning Post, Al Jazeera, The Diplomat, Philippine Inquirer, and Agence France Presse, and academic outlets such as the American Historical Association magazine Perspectives on History. In 2020 his book American Colonisation and the City Beautiful was awarded the IPHS-Bosma Prize in Planning History Innovation.

He currently is an editorial board member of the Brill book series Studies in Architecture and Urban History, an editorial board member of Planning Perspectives and World History Bulletin, as well as a council member of the Epidemic Urbanism Initiative (EUI). He is Vice President of the International Planning History Society, and the Planning Perspectives’ Book Review Editor for the Asia Region.

He has been a Visiting Fellow at the University of Sydney (Australia), University College Dublin (Ireland), the Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais (Brazil), and Free University Berlin (Germany). In 2018 he was awarded the Global Architectural History Teaching Collaborative Global Connections Fellowship, and in 2020 he was awarded a Senior Fellowship by Advance HE. He is also a Fellow of the Royal Historical Society, Royal Asiatic Society of Great Britain and Ireland, and the Royal Society of Arts, plus a chartered member of the Royal Town Planning Institute.

He is the four-time recipient of the History Department Teaching Award, and has been awarded the Faculty of Arts Outstanding Teaching Award eight times. In 2014 and 2019 he was a successful applicant to CUHK’s International Partnership Development Programme. He has been awarded four General Research Fund grants from Hong Kong’s Research Grants Council, eleven CUHK courseware and teaching development grants, and one Hong Kong Government Education Bureau-funded teaching grant. In late-2015/early-2016 he curated an exhibition at the CUHK University Library on ‘The History of the Philippines in Flags and Maps’, and 2017 he was convenor of the conference Southeast Asia in Evolution: Trans-Pacific Agency and the City, c. 1850-1941. He is currently, with Joel Rico (St Benilde College, Manila), rebuilding the Daniel H. Burnham Memorial in Manila, the Philippines, and he was a consultant to the Watts Gallery (UK) for their G.F. Watts Physical Energy sculpture project.

Research Interests
  • World History
  • Planning History (of the Philippines)
  • Urban History 
  • Urbanism, culture, and public health
Selected Publications


  • The City Beautiful and the Globalisation of Urban Planning (under contract with Cambridge University Press).
  • Remodelling to Prepare for Independence: The Philippine Commonwealth, Decolonisation, Cities and Public Works, c. 1935-46 (Routledge, 2023).
  • American Colonisation and the City Beautiful: Filipinos and Planning in the Philippines, 1916-1935 (Routledge, 2019).
  • Cities and Nationhood: American Imperialism and Urban Design in the Philippines, 1898-1916 (University of Hawaii Press, 2018).
  • British Provincial Civic Design and the Building of Late-Victorian and Edwardian Cities, 1880-1914 (Mellen, 2008).
  • Edited volume with Mira Crouch, Knowledge as Value: Illumination through Critical Prisms (Brill, 2008).


Journal Articles

  • ‘The Pensionados Program Architects Return Home’, forthcoming in the Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians 83.1 (2024).
  • ‘The Assorted Environmental Colors of Metro Manila: Accounts of Richness, Imperfections, Perils, and Heritage within the Philippines’, forthcoming in the Journal of Urban History.
  • ‘Developing a (re)Balance of Life in Manila: The 1905 City Plan, and the Rebuilding of the Daniel H. Burnham Memorial’, Town Planning Review 94.5 (2023).
  • ‘The Interlacing of Disease, Death, and Colonial Discord: San Lazaro Crematorium, Manila, the Philippines’, Mortality: Promoting the Interdisciplinary Study of Death and Dying 28.1 (2023).
  • ‘Cartoons as Windows to Understand the United States in/and World History’, World History Bulletin 88.2 (2022).
  • ‘Untangling the Hybrid World’, HERDSA-Connect 44.2 (2022).
  • ‘Dis-Ease and Epidemics: Shock and Modern-Era Perceptions of Contagion’, Endeavour 46.1-2 (2022).
  • ‘Effective Learning Online? Ask the Students’, HERDSA-Connect 43.3 (2021).
  • ‘City Planning, Social Progress, Colony, and Metropole: Expanding the Learning of U.S. History via Introducing the 1905 City Plan for Manila, the Philippines’, World History Connected 18.3 (2021).
  • ‘Hong Kong Students and the New Normal’, HERDSA-Connect 43.1 (2021).
  • ‘Recovering the Urban Past for Equitable Present and Future Social Recovery’, Journal of Public Space 5.3 (2020)
  • ‘Severe Social Disorder’, HERDSA-Connect 42.2 (2020).
  • ‘Rethinking Teaching and Learning within the backdrop of Covid-19’s Disruption’, Campus Review (April 2020).
  • ‘Philippine Cities, Their History, Development, Culture, and Governance’, Journal of Urban History 17.4 (2018).
  • ‘Baguio: A Mismanaged Evolutionary Narrative of the City Beautiful to the City Problematic’, Asian Geographer: A Geographical Journal on Asia and the Pacific Rim 25.2 (2018).
  • ‘The First Filipino City Beautiful Plans’, Planning Perspectives 33.3 (2018).
  • ‘The Filipinization of the American City Beautiful, 1916-35’, Journal of Planning History 17.4 (2018).
  • ‘City Profile: Manila’, Cities 72 (2018).
  • ‘Modern Urban Designing in the Philippines, 1898-1916’, Philippine Studies: Historical and Ethnographic Viewpoints 64.1 (2016).
  • ‘Owning the City: Civic Art’s Historical Practical and Contemporary Meaning in Yangon’, Art and the Public Sphere 2.1 (2014).
  • ‘Canberra’s Connections: Canberra’s Plan and Nationhood’, Fabrications 23.1 (2013).
  • ‘Rangoon’, Cities 31 (2013).
  • ‘Utilising Social Media to Know the Victorian World: A Blended Approach’, Journal of Victorian Culture 17.4 (2012).
  • ‘The Creation of the Modern Urban Form in the Philippines’, Urban Morphology 16.1 (2012).
  • ‘America and the Philippines: Modern Civilization and City Planning’, Education About Asia 16.2 (2011).
  • ‘Civic Design and National Identity: The Example of Edwardian Ireland’, Planning Perspectives 26.3 (2011).
  • ‘American Imperialism, Civic Design and the Philippines in the early-1900s’, European Journal of American Culture 29.3 (2010).
  • ‘Representing a City and Nation: Wales’s Matchless Civic Centre’, Welsh History Review 24.3 (2009).
  • ‘The Contemporary Chinese Metropolis: Modernity, Globalisation, and Conceptual Meanings’, Design Principles and Practice 3.1 (2009).
  • ‘The Making and Maintenance of Cenotaphs’, Fieldwork and Documents 52 (2008).
  • ‘Chaos, Contagion, Cholera & Chadwick’, Yale Journal of Biology & Medicine 80.2 (2007).
  • ‘Arquitectura, Oportunismo y la Planificación del Rostro de un Imperio’ (Architecture, Opportunism and the Planning of an Imperial Face), Revista de Arquitectura 9 (2007)
  • ‘Post-Industrial Urbanism and the Growth of Sustainability: Historical Trends, Present and Future Observations’, The Journal of Futures Studies 9.4 (2005).


Chapters in Edited Volumes

  • ‘The Reform of Philippine Civilization and the Displacing of the Laws of the Indies for the City Beautiful: Daniel Burnham’s 1905 Plan for Manila’, in David Baillargeon and Jeremy Taylor (eds.), Spatial Histories of Occupation (Bloomsbury, 2022).
  • ‘The 1905 Report on Proposed Improvements at Manila by Daniel Burnham: The American Imperium in Textual and Urban Design Form’, in Joseph Hartman (ed.), Imperial Islands (University of Hawaii Press, 2021).
  • ‘Spatial Change and the Cholera Epidemic in Manila, the Philippines’, forthcoming in Mohammad Gharipour and Caitlin DeClercq (eds.), Epidemic Urbanism (Intellectual Books, 2021).
  • ‘Monuments for Memory, Monuments for Identity: The Historical and Contemporary Situation in the Philippines’, in Marjorie Trusted and Joanna Barnes (eds.), Toppling Statues (Public Statues and Sculpture Association Publishing, 2021).
  • ‘Coketowns’, in Os Modelas das Companhias Industriais e sues Reflexos nas Cidades Brasileiras (eds. Maria Cristina Villefort Teixeira, Maria Manoela Gimmler Netto, Marieta Cardosa Maciel, Marina Salgado, and Stael de Alvarenga Pereira Costa), Editora EVA, 2019.
  • ‘Transitions: The Form and Meaning of the ‘New’ Philippine City After 1898’, Ideas of the City in Asia (eds. Henco Bekkering, Adele Esposito, and Charles Goldblum), University of Amsterdam Press, 2019.
  • ‘Place, Race, and Grand Architectural Statements: Civic Design in Early-1900s Dublin’, Visualizing Dublin: Visual Culture and the Making of Modern Dublin (ed. J. Carville), Peter Lang, 2013.
  • ‘Asian Culture and Urbanism: Meanings and Experiences of the Evolving Built Environment’, Writing Spaces: Travel, Global Cities and Landscapes (eds. I-Chun Wang, M. Theis, and C. Larkosh), National Sun Yat-Sen University, 2013.
  • ‘Modernizing the Urban Landscape: Architecture and the Internationalized Face of Asia’, Asian Popular Culture: Memory, City, and Celebrity (eds. L. Fitzsimmons and J. Hunt), Palgrave, 2013.
  • ‘Charles Darwin and Herbert Spencer’, Popular Controversies in World History Vol. 3 (ed. S. Danver). ABC-Clio, 2010.
  • ‘British Slavery Abolition Act (1833)’, Milestone Documents in World History (ed. P. Finkelman), Schlager Group, 2010.
  • ‘Abstracting the City: Urbanisation and the ‘Opening-up’ Process in China’, China in an Era of Transition: Understanding Contemporary State and Society Actors (eds. R. Hasmath and J. Hsu), Palgrave MacMillan, 2009.
  • ‘The Impact of the Internet upon the Commodity of Knowledge and the Craft of History’, Knowledge as Value: Illumination through Critical Prism (eds. I. Morley and M. Crouch), Rodopi, 2008.
  • ‘British History’, 21st Century History Highway: A Guide to Internet Resources (eds. D. Trinkle and S. Merriman), M.E. Sharpe Inc., 2006.
  • ‘Mid-Atlantic Region: Architecture’, American Regional Cultures (ed. R. Marzec), Greenwood Press, 2004.


Other Publications

  • More than 35 book reviews have been published in scholarly journals such as Planning Perspectives, Urban History, The Journal of Architecture, Journal of British Studies, Urban Morphology: Journal of the International Seminar on Urban Form, Canadian Journal of History, American Historical Review and Australian Economic History Review.
Research Projects
Year Research Project
2024-2026 In our Image. in their Image: The Evolution of Colonial Governance in Manila, The Philippines c. 1901-41
General Research Fund (GRF) by the HKSAR Research Grants Council
Back to top