woman with glasses smiling

Susan Ross

Associate Professor

Susan Ross is associate professor in the School of Indigenous and Canadian Studies, with a cross-appointment to the Azrieli School of Architecture and Urbanism, Carleton University. Her teaching and research address the possibilities for sustainable heritage conservation, from integrated planning for historic urban infrastructure landscapes, to understanding the social significance of early apartment housing, to addressing the environmental legacies of 20th century building materials. A current focus explores the intersections of heritage and waste. 

A licensed architect in Quebec (OAQ) and an active member of local to international conservation organizations including Heritage Ottawa, National Trust for Canada, ICOMOS Canada, Association for Critical Heritage Studies, TICCIH, Docomomo, Susan also co-chairs the National Roundtable for Heritage Education. 

In 2013 she was inducted in the College of Fellows of the Association for Preservation Technology for her leadership in raising awareness and understanding about heritage conservation and sustainability.


Professional License – Ordre des Architectes du Québec, 1992

LEED Accreditation – Canada Green Building Council, 2006

Master in Applied Sciences – Planning: Conservation of the Built Environment Université de Montréal, Montréal, 2002

BArch. McGill University –  Montreal, 1987 

B.Sc. Arch. – McGill University, Montreal, 1985


CDNS 1101 Ottawa – Exploring National Institutions

CDNS 2400 – Heritage Conservation in Canada

CDNS 4400 – Cultural Landscapes and Identity in Canada

CDNS 5403/4403 – Heritage Conservation and Sustainability

Student Work – Sustainable Heritage Case Studies

CDNS 5402 Heritage Conservation II – Theory in Practice


Susan M. Ross. 2020. “Re-evaluating Heritage Waste: Sustaining Material Values through Deconstruction and Reuse.” The Historic Environment: Policy and Practice.  DOI: 10.1080/17567505.2020.1723259

Susan Ross and Victoria Angel. 2020. Heritage and Waste: Introduction. Journal of Cultural Heritage Management and Sustainable Development 10.1. Access here: https://www.emerald.com/insight/content/doi/10.1108/JCHMSD-02-2020-116/full/html

Susan Ross. 2019. “Waterworks in a changing climate: the R.C. Harris filtration plant, Toronto, Canada.” Proceedings of the Institute of Civil Engineers – Engineering History and Heritage 172.3: 125-135. https://doi.org/10.1680/jenhh.18.00025

Susan Ross. 2019. “Conserving ‘modest’ Moderne housing: 1930s apartment buildings in Canada.” The Routledge Companion to Art Deco, edited by Bridget Elliott and Michael Windover, 2019, 317-339. Available as e-book from the Carleton University library.

Susan Ross. 2018. “Vancouver Experiment: Reinventing a Modern University Campus.” Conference paper August 29, 2018 at Docomomo International conference, Metamorphosis, the Continuity of Change, Ljubljana, Slovenia.

Susan Ross. 2017. “Keyword: Deconstruction Waste (Building).” Discard Studies.

Susan Ross. 2017. “Sustainable Conservation Strategies for Canada’s Modernist Wood Legacy.” Journal of Architectural Conservation 23.3, 171-189. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/13556207.2017.1330385


Susan has worked as a registered architect in the private sector in Montreal and Berlin, held teaching and research positions in Canadian universities, and both volunteered and been employed by local, national and international heritage organizations. In her most recent work prior to coming to Carleton she was senior conservation architect in the federal government in Gatineau, Quebec.

While working in government she played a lead role in the revisions of the second edition of the Standards and Guidelines for the Conservation of Historic Places in Canada, in particular to address cultural landscapes, modern heritage and sustainability.  As an expert on heritage conservation policies and practices, and their integration with sustainability, she is invited to participate on advisory committees, and has served as an expert witness in environmental review.  

As an architect, project work has included museums, hospitals, schools, factories, a power station, lighthouses, office buildings, housing and houses. This involved new design, rehabilitation, additions, interiors, and condition assessments. More information on her professional career as an architect is available on request.