Barker has worked as an educator, researcher, strategist, designer, and maverick in architecture, art, technology and design for 25 years. His client list includes the late Zaha Hadid, Luminato Festival, TVO Broadcasting, London Eye, IMAX, Sony Playstation, Bank of America, Proctor & Gamble, Unilever, 3 Mobile, O2 Mobile, Targetti Lighting, Dyson, Sharp Solar, LendLease, Arup and Siemens.
He has held a number of academic leadership positions as a chair and dean, allowing him to blend research with practice for his clients. He is chair of OCAD University’s Digital Futures Initiative. Prior to joining OCAD University, Tom Barker was appointed as the pan-faculty professor of Architecture, Innovation and Design in the faculty of Design, Architecture and Building at the University of Technology Sydney (UTS). Barker is currently the director of the research Centre for Contemporary Design Practices, the head of the UrbanAid research group, and runs a masters program in Sustainability, Design and Creative Enterprise. His work in academia has run in parallel to that of his practice, formalizing in 2002 with a Course Master appointment to the Architectural Association, followed by a professorship at the Royal College of Art (RCA) in 2005, and a visiting Fellowship at Melbourne's RMIT University in 2007.