How Dr. Michael Bull Helps Businesses Combat Objectionable Odors
If you’ve ever been overwhelmed by the aroma of freshly ground coffee upon walking into a café, or the particular bouquet of a hotel lobby, you know firsthand that scent marketing is real. But while some businesses strategically pump smells into the air, others strive to counteract ones that naturally exist on their premises—a subject to which Dr. Michael Bull, one of the leading air quality and odor experts in the United Kingdom, has dedicated more than three decades of his career. The former director of global engineering company Arup’s environmental consulting arm in the U.K., he established his own firm earlier this year.
Dr. Bull applies his knowledge of assessing and managing smells to an array of industries, including farms, restaurants, airports, highways, wastewater treatment plants, and manufacturing facilities, making recommendations for how to plan infrastructure around the scents a venture emits or encounters, conducting odor assessment reports, and combating air pollutants. He has also presented expert evidence on air quality matters to committees at British Parliament and in court, where he regularly works with clients on statutory nuisance cases, in which a scent or air quality affects a person’s health or property. We recently spoke with Dr. Bull about his line of work, and the central olfactory issues he encounters today.
What led you to choose a career in assessing odors and their relationship to architecture?