Established in 1998, DSDHA is headed by founding partners Deborah Saunt and David Hills, along with Claire McDonald, who became the practice's third director in 2004. DSDHA's portfolio includes 12 school and university buildings. The current workload extends from the redesign of Parliament Square, in collaboration with Foster and Partners, to a £27 million new education campus in Surrey and a private residence in Kensington Palace Gardens.
The practice has won three RIBA awards and a British Construction Industry Award, as well as many design competitions, including the CABE/ IPPR Designs on Democracy Competition; the Peabody Trust low-cost housing and artists' studios in Silvertown; the Channel 4 Castleford Project; and the Department for Education and Skills' Neighbourhood Nurseries Competition for Hoyle Early Years Centre in Bury. Extensive teaching and research informs all of its work.