Vladimir Jovanovic serves as the Architecture and Interiors practice lead at AECOM Middle East. With 20 years’ international experience on diverse projects, he began his career in Serbia with independent competition entries culminating in an exhibition at the Venice Biennale of Architecture. This journey evolved into a five-year engagement at Foster+Partners’ London design studio, contributing to numerous global projects and competitions.

Motivated by the opportunity to shape the UAE’s urban landscape, Vladimir moved to the Middle East a decade ago to become the Head of Architecture for Meraas. He joined AECOM in 2019, and has spent the past five years dedicated to building upon AECOM’s rich architectural portfolio. He is currently overseeing 1.5 million square meters of design work and is leading a team of approximately 120 architects and interior designers from across various international offices.

Locally, in AECOM’s Abu Dhabi and Dubai offices, Vladimir has expanded the Architecture + Interiors business to a robust 70-member team who are involved in several of the region’s mega-projects. Notable contributions include the million square-meter North Riyadh Mall and the over 400 on-street stores at the Diriyah Square Retail District, both in Saudi Arabia. He has also influenced high-profile regional projects like the Bacarat Hotel and Residences in Dubai. The team’s current focus is on hospitality, leisure, entertainment and residential projects and Vladimir is excited about the region’s upcoming visions in these sectors.

An example of the abstract, but memorable design of the UAE SUSTAINABLE HOUSING PROTOTYPE.

As a passionate advocate for sustainability and a hands-on designer, he recently completed an energy-efficient design for a manufacturing research project for New Emirati Housing, where the delivered prototype consumes 50% less energy than traditionally designed houses in the region.

Vladimir’s progression through various roles has profoundly influenced his holistic approach to design. His strengths in front-end design stages, combined with construction and development management knowledge, position him as a valuable member of AECOM’s Global Design Leadership, actively driving the development and implementation of data driven integrated design approaches across regions and their portfolios.

Looking ahead, Vladimir strives for meaning in his design work, aiming to create environments that benefit humanity. He strongly believes that emerging AI possibilities will automate the design documentation production, enabling more active ‘design-thinking’ during the process to result in more meaningful designs for society’s benefit.