Before moving to his post at the Design Museum, he contributed to Schoolkids OZ, was the design and architecture critic for The Observer, the Dean of the Faculty of Art, Design and Architecture at Kingston University and co-chair of the Urban Age Advisory Board.
In 1983, he co-founded with Peter Murray and Simon Esterson, Blueprint, a monthly architecture magazine and went on to be the magazine's editor and then its editorial director. From 2000 to 2004, he was the editor of Domus.
Alongside these roles, he was the director of The Glasgow UK City of Architecture and Design program in 1999 and the director of the Venice Architecture Biennale in 2002. He was also a juror for the design of London Aquatics Centre, which was designed and built for the 2012 Olympics by the architect Zaha Hadid.
- Cult Objects. Published by Paladin Books, 1985. ISBN 0-586-08483-5
- Cult Heroes: How To Be Famous For More Than Fifteen Minutes. Published by Andre Deutsch, 1989. ISBN 0-233-98355-4
- The 100 Mile City. Published by Harcourt, 1993. ISBN 0-15-642357-X
- Ron Arad. Published by Laurence King Publishing, 2001. ISBN 1-85669-258-2
- Norman Foster and the British Museum (edited with Spencer De Grey, authored by Norman Foster. Published by Prestel Verlag, 2001. ISBN 3-7913-2541-8
- John Pawson Themes and Projects. Published by Phaidon, 2004. ISBN 0-7148-4452-7
- Future Systems. Published by Phaidon, 2006. ISBN 0-7148-4469-1
- The Edifice Complex: How the Rich and Powerful Shape the World. Published by Penguin, 2006. ISBN 0-14-101672-8
- The Language of Things: Understanding the World of Desirable Objects. W.W. Norton, 2009. ISBN 978-0-393-07081-1
- Norman Foster: A Life in Architecture, London, Weidenfeld, 2010. ISBN 978-0-297-85868-3
- LSE: "Advisory board", retrieved 17 May 2013