Yohei KATO 

Title: Research Fellow

Alumni: PhD in Architecture and Sustainable Design, Singapore University of Technology and Design

Discipline/s: Community Development, Urban Studies

E-mail: yohei_kato@sutd.edu.sg

Contact: 64994863


Yohei Kato is a Research Fellow at the Lee Kuan Yew Centre for Innovative Cities. He is trained in the fields of community development and urban studies. His doctoral research examines the factors that facilitate or hinder engagement and empowerment of stakeholders involved in placekeeping projects in Japan. Using a sequential mixed-methods approach, his study provides theoretical and practical implications for designing and managing inclusive built environments. He explores research areas such as empowerment, mixed-methods research, social network analysis, and the relationships between built and natural environments, well-being, and children and young people’s participation. Prior to his academic career, he worked on monitoring and evaluating development projects in India and led community design and youth participatory action research projects in Bangladesh, Japan, and the US.

He supports Belinda and team on the "An Integrated Socio-Temporal Study of Outdoor Recreation Spaces in Singapore" project.


  • PhD in Architecture and Sustainable Design, Singapore University of Technology and Design (2023)
  • Master of Science in Community Development, University of California, Davis (2015)
  • Bachelor of Arts in International Development, University of Tsukuba, Japan (2013)


  • Benjumea, Diana M., Kato, Yohei., & Chong, Keng Hua. (2022). Participatory approaches to enact meaningful interconnectedness with the natural environment: a case study in Singapore. Cities & Health, 6(6), 1134-1151.
  • Kato, Yohei., & Charania, Amina. (2020). How to Integrate Photovoice and Multiple Participatory Methods. In Loebach, Janet., Little, Sarah., Cox, Adina., & Owens, Patsy Eubanks. (Eds.), The Routledge Handbook of Designing Public Spaces for Young People: Processes, Practices and Policies for Youth Inclusion. Routledge

Conference Presentations/Proceedings

  • Kato, Yohei. (2022, July). The Mechanisms of Relational Empowerment through Community Engagement: An Application of Exponential Random Graph. 51st virtual annual conference of IAPS (International Association People-Environment Studies). IAPS.
  • Kato, Yohei., Sokkalingam, Kanchana D.,  Yeo, Natasha., Chong, Keng Hua. (2022, June). Mediation Effects of Residents’ Perceptions on the Association between Built Environment and Subjective Well-Being: Preliminary Findings from Singapore. 53rd annual conference of EDRA (Environmental Design Research Association). EDRA.
  • Kato, Yohei. (2021, May). What Motivates Participation in Community Design? —Preliminary Findings from a Long-term Community Design Initiative in Japan. 52nd virtual annual conference of EDRA. EDRA.
  • Ha, Tshui Mum., Kato, Yohei., Chen, Qingqing., Chong, Keng Hua., Poorthuis, Ate. (2020, June). Tracing Precinct Typologies and their Relationships with Community Interactions, Participation, and Sense of Place in High-rise, High-density Public Housing. 50th virtual annual conference of IAPS. IAPS.
  • Chong, Keng Hua., Tongchaoran, Gao., Kato, Yohei. (2019, June). Heartland Kaki: Creative Appropriation and Community Design In Public Housing. 12t annual conference of IFoU (International Forum on Urbanism). IFoU.
  • Kato, Yohei. (2015, June). Evolution of Participatory Practices: 5 disciplines, 50 Years. 38th annual conference of the Association for Community Design (ACD). ACD.