Karam Al-Obaidi

Dr Karam Al-Obaidi BSAE, MSc, PhD, SFHEA, MCIAT

Senior Lecturer in Sustainable Architecture


I joined Sheffield Hallam University (SHU) in September 2018 as a Senior Lecturer in Environmental Architecture and I teach on the Architecture and Architectural Technology courses. I am an architectural engineer and an international researcher in environmental technology and climate emergency practices in the built environment. I am a Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (SFHEA) and a Chartered Architectural Technologist (MCIAT). I have supervised and examined PhD students and I am interested in PhD supervision and research consultancy.

My research and teaching lie within three Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs): (1) Good Health and Wellbeing (SDG3), (2) Sustainable Cities and Communities (SDG11) and (3) Responsible Consumption and Production (SDG12). My research interests include Environmental Architecture, Decarbonisation, Architectural Systems, Building Performance, Indoor Environmental Quality, Simulation and Modelling, Energy Efficiency, Designing with Data; Sustainable Retrofitting, Net-zero Building, Urban Microclimate, Sustainable Building Technologies and Smart Buildings and Cities.



I hold a PhD in Sustainable Architecture from University Sains Malaysia (USM) and I worked and taught at top Asian universities in Malaysia before joining SHU. I was a Senior Lecturer and Head of a Research Unit (Design and Sustainable Architecture) at the University of Malaya (UM) in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. I have led and participated in funded research projects with over £100,000. I have published widely on environment and technology in architecture, and many of my research articles were published in the world's top-ranked journals. My interdisciplinary research has helped to develop my work within different fields of architecture, engineering, technology, and science.

In the last 10 years, I taught in different undergraduate and postgraduate courses in architecture and architectural technology at several universities in Malaysia, Mexico, China and the UK. I have delivered keynote/invited speeches at different local and international conferences. I am an associate editor, editorial board member, scientific/technical committee member and reviewer for many international journals and conferences. I have reviewed over 400 international papers for the world's top-ranked journals, and I am an active reviewer for more than 50 international peer-reviewed journals.


Al-Sabahi, M.H., Ismail, M.A., Alashwal, A., & Al-Obaidi, K. (2022). Triangulation Method to Assess Indoor Environmental Conditions and Occupant Comfort and Productivity towards Low Energy Buildings in Malaysia. Buildings, 12 (11). http://doi.org/10.3390/buildings12111788

Al-Obaidi, K.M., Al-Duais, H.S., Alduais, N.A.M., Alashwal, A., & Ismail, M.A. (2022). Exploring the environmental performance of liquid glass coating using Sol-Gel technology and responsive Venetian blinds in the tropics. Journal of Building Engineering, 62. http://doi.org/10.1016/j.jobe.2022.105329

Al-Obaidi, K.M., Hossain, M., Alduais, N.A.M., Al-Duais, H.S., Omrany, H., & Ghaffarianhoseini, A. (2022). A review of using IoT for energy efficient buildings and cities: a built environment perspective. Energies, 15 (16). http://doi.org/10.3390/en15165991

Al-Duais, H.S., Ismail, M.A., Awad, Z.A.M., & Al-Obaidi, K.M. (2022). Performance evaluation of solar-powered atmospheric water harvesting using different glazing materials in the tropical built environment: an experimental study. Energies, 15 (9). http://doi.org/10.3390/en15093026

Esparza-López, C.J., Escobar-del Pozo, C., Al-Obaidi, K., & González-Trevizo, M.E. (2022). Improving the thermal performance of indirect evaporative cooling by using a wet fabric device on a concrete roof in hot and humid climates. Energies, 15 (6). http://doi.org/10.3390/en15062213

Al-Duais, H.S., Ismail, M.A., Awad, Z.A.M., & Al-Obaidi, K. (2022). Methods of harvesting water from air for sustainable buildings in hot and tropical climates. Malaysian Construction Research Journal, 12 (1), 150-168. https://www.cream.my/my/publication/download-malaysian-construction-research-journal/mcrj-special-issue-volume-15-no-1-2022

García-Solórzano, L.A., Esparza-Lopez, C.J., & Al-Obaidi, K. (2020). Environmental design solutions for existing concrete flat roofs in low-cost housing to improve passive cooling in western Mexico. Journal of Cleaner Production. http://doi.org/10.1016/j.jclepro.2020.123992

Al-Masrani, S.M., & Al-Obaidi, K. (2019). Dynamic shading systems: A review of design parameters, platforms and evaluation strategies. Automation in construction, 102, 195-216. http://doi.org/10.1016/j.autcon.2019.01.014

Ghaffarianhoseini, A., Berardi, U., Ghaffarianhoseini, A., & Al-Obaidi, K. (2019). Analyzing the thermal comfort conditions of outdoor spaces in a university campus in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Science of the total environment. http://doi.org/10.1016/j.scitotenv.2019.01.284

Al-Masrani, S.M., Al-Obaidi, K., Zalin, N.A., & Aida Isma, M.I. (2018). Design optimisation of solar shading systems for tropical office buildings: Challenges and future trends. Solar Energy, 170, 849-872. http://doi.org/10.1016/j.solener.2018.04.047

Wong, Y.C., Al-Obaidi, K.M., & Mahyuddin, N. (2018). Recycling of end-of-life vehicles (ELVs) for building products: Concept of processing framework from automotive to construction industries in Malaysia. Journal of Cleaner Production, 190, 285-302. http://doi.org/10.1016/j.jclepro.2018.04.145

Kam, K.J., Lim, A.S.H., Al-Obaidi, K., & Lim, T.S. (2018). Evaluating Housing Needs and Preferences of Generation Y in Malaysia. Planning Practice and Research, 33 (2), 172-185. http://doi.org/10.1080/02697459.2018.1427413

C. Munaaim, M.A., Al-Obaidi, K., & Azizul Abd Rahim, M. (2017). Performance comparison of solar assisted and inverter air conditioning systems in Malaysia. Journal of Design and Built Environment, 17, 53-61. http://doi.org/10.22452/jdbe.sp2017no1.5

Al-Obaidi, K., Azzam Ismail, M., Hussein, H., & Abdul Rahman, A.M. (2017). Biomimetic building skins: an adaptive approach. Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, 79, 1472-1491. http://doi.org/10.1016/j.rser.2017.05.028

Al-Obaidi, K., Wei, S.L., Ismail, M.A., & Kam, K.J. (2017). Sustainable building assessment of colonial shophouses after adaptive reuse in Kuala Lumpur. Buildings, 7 (4), 87. http://doi.org/10.3390/buildings7040087

Al-Obaidi, K.M., Ismail, M.A., Munaaim, M.A.C., & Abdul Rahman, A.M. (2017). Designing an integrated daylighting system for deep-plan spaces in Malaysian low-rise buildings. Solar Energy, 149, 85-101. http://doi.org/10.1016/j.solener.2017.04.001

Alashwal, A.M., Fareed, N.F., & Al-Obaidi, K. (2017). Determining success criteria and success factors for international construction projects for Malaysian contractors. Construction Economics and Building, 17 (2), 62-80. http://doi.org/10.5130/AJCEB.v17i2.5319

Elsawahli, H., Shah Ali, A., Ahmad, F., & Al-Obaidi, K. (2017). Evaluating Potential Environmental Variables and Active Aging in Older Adults for Age-Friendly Neighborhoods in Malaysia. Journal of Housing for the Elderly, 31 (1), 74-92. http://doi.org/10.1080/02763893.2016.1268560

Al-Obaidi, K., Ismail, M.A., & Abdul Rahman, A.M. (2016). Effective use of hybrid turbine ventilator to improve thermal performance in Malaysian tropical houses. Building Services Engineering Research and Technology, 37 (6), 755-768. http://doi.org/10.1177/0143624416648470

Munaaim, M.A.C., Al-Obaidi, K.M., Ismail, M.R., & Abdul Rahman, A.M. (2016). Potential of fibre optic daylighting systems in tropical Malaysia. Indoor and Built Environment, 25 (3), 466-480. http://doi.org/10.1177/1420326x14552205

Al-Obaidi, K.M., Ismail, M., & Abdul Rahman, A.M. (2016). A comparative study between unvented and vented attics powered by the hybrid turbine ventilator in Malaysian houses. International Journal of Sustainable Energy, 35 (2), 148-160. http://doi.org/10.1080/14786451.2013.873801

Keumala, N., Younus, M.A., Kuan, Y., Razak, A.S.B.A., Ismail, M.A., & Al-Obaidi, K.M. (2016). Pedagogy of architectural education on Sustainability in Malaysia - Student perspective. Open House International, 41 (4), 104-108.

Al-Obaidi, K.M., Ismail, M.A., & Abdul Rahman, A.M. (2015). Assessing the allowable daylight illuminance from skylights in single-storey buildings in Malaysia: a review. International Journal of Sustainable Building Technology and Urban Development, 6 (4), 236-248. http://doi.org/10.1080/2093761x.2015.1129369

Munaaim, M.A.C., Al-Obaidi, K.M., Ismail, M.R., & Rahman, A.M.A. (2015). The behavior of internal humidity from fibre optic daylighting system application. Jurnal Teknologi, 75 (9), 1-7.

Abbood, A.W., Al-Obaidi, K.M., Awang, H., & Abdul Rahman, A.M. (2015). Achieving energy efficiency through industrialized building system for residential buildings in Iraq. International Journal of Sustainable Built Environment, 4 (1), 78-90. http://doi.org/10.1016/j.ijsbe.2015.02.002

Kassim, M.P.M., Al-Obaidi, K.M., Munaaim, M.A.C., & Salleh, A.M. (2015). Feasibility Study on Solar Power Plant Utility Grid under Malaysia Feed-in Tariff. American Journal of Engineering and Applied Sciences, 8 (2), 210-222. http://doi.org/10.3844/ajeassp.2015.210.222

Al-Obaidi, K., Ismail, M., & Abdul Rahman, A.M. (2014). Design and performance of a novel innovative roofing system for tropical landed houses. Energy Conversion and Management, 85, 488-504. http://doi.org/10.1016/j.enconman.2014.05.101

Al-Obaidi, K.M., Ismail, M., & Abdul Rahman, A.M. (2014). Passive cooling techniques through reflective and radiative roofs in tropical houses in Southeast Asia: A literature review. Frontiers of Architectural Research, 3 (3), 283-297. http://doi.org/10.1016/j.foar.2014.06.002

Munaaim, M.A.C., Al-Obaidi, K.M., Ismail, M.R., & Rahman, A.M.A. (2014). A review study on the application of the fibre optic daylighting system in Malaysian buildings. International Journal of Sustainable Building Technology and Urban Development, 5 (3), 146-158. http://doi.org/10.1080/2093761x.2014.901931

Al-Obaidi, K.M., Ismail, M., & Abdul Rahman, A.M. (2014). A study of the impact of environmental loads that penetrate a passive skylight roofing system in Malaysian buildings. Frontiers of Architectural Research, 3 (2), 178-191. http://doi.org/10.1016/j.foar.2014.03.004

Al-Obaidi, K.M., Ismail, M., & Abdul Rahman, A.M. (2014). A review of the potential of attic ventilation by passive and active turbine ventilators in tropical Malaysia. Sustainable Cities and Society, 10, 232-240. http://doi.org/10.1016/j.scs.2013.10.001

Munaaim, M., Al-Obaidi, K., Ismail, M., & Rahman, A. (n.d.). Empirical Evaluation of the Effect of Heat Gain from Fiber Optic Daylighting System on Tropical Building Interiors. Sustainability, 6 (12), 9231-9243. http://doi.org/10.3390/su6129231

M. Al-Obaidi, K., Ismail, M., & Abdul Rahman, A.M. (n.d.). Investigation of Passive Design Techniques for Pitched Roof Systems in the Tropical Region. Modern Applied Science, 8 (3). http://doi.org/10.5539/mas.v8n3p182

Al-Obaidi, K.M., Ismail, M., & Abdul Rahman, A.M. (n.d.). A Review of Skylight Glazing Materials in Architectural Designs for a Better Indoor Environment. Modern Applied Science, 8 (1). http://doi.org/10.5539/mas.v8n1p68

Ismail, M.A., M. Al-Obaidi, K., & Sulaiman, R. (n.d.). ENERGY EFFICIENCY POLICY FOR EXISTING TYPICAL CAMPUS BUILDINGS IN THE UNIVERSITY OF MALAYA. PLANNING MALAYSIA JOURNAL, 14 (5). http://doi.org/10.21837/pmjournal.v14.i5.198

Al-Obaidi, K., Wang, J., & Hossain, M. (n.d.). Data-driven Urbanism: Image Processing Techniques for Urban Analytics. .

Conference papers

Ismail, M.A., & Mustafa Al-Obaidi, K. (2019). Exploration in Using Algae to Enhance Indoor Environment in the Tropical Climate. 2019 2nd Asia Conference on Energy and Environment Engineering (ACEEE). http://doi.org/10.1109/aceee.2019.8816895

Ghaffarianhoseini, A., Berardi, U., Raahemifar, K., Ghaffarianhoseini, A., & Al-Obaidi, K. (2017). The Thermal Performance Exploration of Outdoor and Indoor Spaces Using IES & ENVI-me. Simulation Series, 11 (11), 273-280. http://doi.org/10.22360/simaud.2017.simaud.036

AI-Obaidi, K.M., Ismail, M., & Rahman, A.M.A. (2015). Energy efficient skylight design in tropical houses. Key Engineering Materials, 632, 45-56. http://doi.org/10.4028/www.scienctific.net/KEM.632.45

Rifa, R.T., Al-Obaidi, K.M., & Abdul Rahman, A.M. (2014). Improving Stack Effect in Hot Humid Building Interiors with Hybrid Turbine Ventilator(s). MATEC Web of Conferences, 17, 01012. http://doi.org/10.1051/matecconf/20141701012

Book chapters

Al-Obaidi, K.M., & Rahman, A.M.A. (2016). Toplighting Systems for Improving Indoor Environment: A Review. In Renewable Energy and Sustainable Technologies for Building and Environmental Applications. (pp. 117-136). Springer International Publishing: http://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-31840-0_7

Theses / Dissertations

Sasi, O.A.Y. (2022). Holistic housing design to enhance health and wellbeing for libyan war wounded. (Doctoral thesis). Supervised by Spence, K., Al-Obaidi, K., & Freeman, E. http://doi.org/10.7190/shu-thesis-00494

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