2018 Call for Proposals: Infrastructures

Our urban environment is shaped not only by its buildings and public spaces, but also by its infrastructure—the fundamental systems, facilities, and services that enable, sustain, and enhance societal living conditions. Infrastructure may be large public services elements such as power plants, roads, and bridges. It may also be small domestic systems or technological components enabling different kinds of human interaction or environmental impact. Or it may be blue-green infrastructure networks of natural ecosystems for water management and long-term sustainability and resilience. At all scales and manifestations, infrastructural elements are increasingly important subjects of design investigation. No longer thrust to the margins of cities, campuses, and communities, they have emerged as important actors in the design of our individual and collective environments.

The Steedman 2018 jury seeks creative research proposals on the design impact and potential for infrastructures to positively contribute to a sustainable urban future.

2018 Jury

Andrea Leers, FAIA

Principal and Co-Founder, Leers Weinzapfel Associates

Principal and co-founder of Leers Weinzapfel Associates, Andrea Leers is an internationally recognized leader in urban, campus, and civic design. The work of her practice has been widely recognized with over 100 national and regional awards, including the 2007 AIA Architecture Firm Award. The monograph on her practice, Made to Measure: The Work of Leers Weinzapfel Associates, was published in 2011 by Princeton University Press. Leers is the former director of the Master in Urban Design Program at the Harvard Graduate School of Design, where she was an adjunct professor, and she has also taught at Yale University, University of Pennsylvania, University of Virginia, and Tokyo Institute of Technology. She was appointed by Boston mayor Martin J. Walsch to the Boston Civic Design Commission, and she is a member of the University of Washington Architectural Commission. She was a visiting artist at the American Academy in Rome and Chaire des Amériques at the University of Paris, Sorbonne.

Marion Weiss, FAIA
Co-Founder, WEISS/MANFREDI Architecture/Landscape/Urbanism
Graham Chair Professor of Architecture, University of Pennsylvania’s School of Design

Marion Weiss is the co-founder of WEISS/MANFREDI Architecture/Landscape/Urbanism, a multidisciplinary design practice based in New York City. The firm’s award-winning projects include the Seattle Art Museum’s Olympic Sculpture Park, the Women’s Memorial at Arlington National Cemetery, the Brooklyn Botanic Garden’s Visitor Center, Barnard College’s Diana Center, and the University of Pennsylvania’s Singh Center for Nanotechnology. Current and recently completed projects include the U.S. Embassy in New Delhi and a research and development hub for Cornell Tech’s groundbreaking new campus on Roosevelt Island in New York City.

Weiss is the Graham Chair Professor of Architecture at the University of Pennsylvania’s School of Design. She has taught design studios at Harvard University and Cornell University, and was the Eero Saarinen Visiting Professor at Yale University. She has been honored with the Arts & Letters Award in Architecture from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, the Architectural League of New York’s Emerging Voices award, Architectural Record’s 2017 Women in Architecture Design Leader award, Harvard University’s Veronica Rudge Green Prize in Urban Design, and the AIA New York Gold Medal of Honor. Her work has been exhibited at the Museum of Modern Art, the Venice Architecture Biennale, the Louvre, and the Guggenheim Museum. Weiss earned her Master of Architecture at Yale University. She is a fellow of the AIA and a National Academy inductee.

Lisa Iwamoto
Founding Partner, IwamotoScott Architecture
Professor of Architecture, University of California, Berkeley

Lisa Iwamoto is a founding partner of IwamotoScott Architecture, which she leads with her partner, Craig Scott. Located in San Francisco, the firm engages in a wide range of projects including 88 Bluxome, a 1 million-square-foot, mixed-use development; the Miami Design District’s City View Garage; two headquarters for Pinterest; Bloomberg R&D’s flagship building; and the Goto Residence. IwamotoScott has received numerous awards, including the Architectural League of New York’s Emerging Voices award and the Architectural League Prize for Young Architects + Designers; Architectural Record’s Design Vanguard; over twenty AIA Design Awards; a P/A Award; and numerous other architecture and interior awards. Their work has been published in hundreds of journals and exhibited in over fifty museums and galleries. Iwamoto earned her Master of Architecture from Harvard University, where she graduated with distinction, and her Bachelor of Science in structural engineering from the University of Colorado. She is the author of Digital Fabrications: Architectural and Material Techniques, published in 2009 by Princeton Architectural Press. Iwamoto is a professor of architecture at the University of California, Berkeley.

Linda C. Samuels
Associate Professor of Urban Design, Sam Fox School of Design & Visual Arts, Washington University in St. Louis

Linda C. Samuels is an associate professor of urban design at the Sam Fox School of Design & Visual Arts at Washington University in St. Louis, where she teaches studios and seminars on infrastructural urbanism, urban history and theory, and sustainability metrics. Samuels is co-PI on a grant from The Divided City initiative, funded by the Mellon Foundation, entitled Mobility For All By All, which aims to increase the social and environmental benefits of the multibillion-dollar proposed MetroLink expansion for residents living along the alignment. Previously, she was the inaugural director of the Sustainable City Project, a multidisciplinary research, teaching, and outreach initiative of the University of Arizona. Samuels earned her Doctorate in Urban Planning from the University of California, Los Angeles, and her Master of Architecture from Princeton University. While at UCLA, she was a senior research associate at cityLAB, an urban think tank in UCLA’s Department of Architecture and Urban Design, and an adjunct lecturer at the University of Southern California, Woodbury University, and Otis College of Art and Design.

Her publications include “Top/Up Urbanism” (2017) in Amplified Urbanism; “Stitches and Insertions” in Dana Cuff and Roger Sherman’s Fast-Forward Urbanism: Rethinking Architecture’s Engagement with the City (2011); and “Infrastructural Optimism” (2009) and “Working Public Architecture” (2010), both published in Places journal. Her latest essay, “Resistance at the Trench: Why Efforts to Reinvent the 101 Freeway in Downtown Los Angeles Continue to Fail” (2017), was recently published in the Journal of Planning History. She is currently writing a book with Routledge Press entitled Infrastructural Optimism. Samuels’ work has been widely supported, including grants from the John Randolph and Dora Haynes Foundation, the Getty Research Institute, UCLA, the Graham Foundation, ACSA, and the LEF Foundation.

Anna B. F. Ives, AIA
Managing Partner, patterhn ives

Lecturer in Architecture, Sam Fox School of Design & Visual Arts, Washington University in St. Louis

Anna B. F. Ives is the managing partner of patterhn ives, llc, and a lecturer in architecture in the Sam Fox School of Design & Visual Arts at Washington University in St. Louis. She has a diverse portfolio of award-winning work focusing on arts, education, and community. Ives approaches teaching and project work with criticality, rigor, patience, and persistence, finding the complement of the two pursuits essential. With degrees from Bryn Mawr College and Columbia University, her education and background brings considerable depth to the practice of architecture. Prior to her graduate education, she studied Chinese history with a focus on economics. Compositing these interests, her thesis investigated advanced international economics as it pertains to Chinese banking and lending policies. Ives worked in offices in New York, Philadelphia, and St. Louis prior to founding patterhn ives with partners Eric Hoffman and Tony Patterson.

In 2009 Ives was among 30 outstanding St. Louis-area business professionals selected by the St. Louis Business Journal to receive a 30 Under 30 award. Her thoughtful approach to design balanced with her innate ability in management and language consistently garner trust and appreciation among clients and colleagues.

2016 Call for Proposals: Adaptation

While past Steedman Fellows were chosen based on a design competition, the 2016 call for proposals marked a shift to a new process. Applicants were asked to develop research proposals that responded to a particular theme. The 2016 theme, developed by jury chair Mason White, is described below.


Our age is increasingly defined by unpredictability and a need for contingency in design. However, the life of a building or design cannot always keep pace with changes in culture, context, or climate. How is the rigidity of architecture slackened? Where does the ability to adjust, modify, or respond to factors exist? Can (and does) Architecture adapt?  

This year, the theme of adaptation is offered as an area of enquiry. In biology, adaptation enhances the survival and fitness of organisms. Within design, demands for adaptive responses to climatic, cultural, or societal change have tested architecture’s transformative properties. More than ever, exciting new considerations of accessibility, sustainability, and flexibility are being incorporated earlier and earlier into design processes. It could be argued that an inability of architecture to adapt will be its demise.

The Steedman 2016 jury seeks forward-thinking research proposals on instances and ideas of adaptation in architecture.

2016 Jury

Mason White,
Principal, Lateral Office, Toronto
Associate Professor of Architecture & John H. Daniels Faculty of Architecture, Landscape, & Design, University of Toronto

Mason White, along with Lola Sheppard, is a founding Partner at Lateral Office. He received his Bachelor of Architecture from Virginia Tech and his Master of Architecture from Harvard Graduate School of Design. He is an Associate Professor at the Daniels Faculty of Architecture, Landscape, & Design at the University of Toronto. He has taught at Harvard University, Cornell University, Ohio State University, and UC Berkeley. WHITE previously worked at Moncaelli Press (New York), Machado Silvetti Associates (Boston), and Panter Hudspith (London) before forming LATERAL OFFICE. He is convinced that there are new roles for architecture out there that we do not know because we are not looking, really looking. WHITE is the recipient of the 2008-09 Arthur Wheelwright Fellowship from Harvard Graduate School of Design and the 2012-13 Howard Friedman Visiting Professorship in the Practice of Architecture at UC Berkeley College of Environmental Design.


deborahberkeheadshot_webDeborah Berke, FAIA, LEED AP
Partner, Deborah Berke Partners

Dean, Yale School of Architecture

Deborah Berke is an architect, educator, and the founder of New York-based Deborah Berke Partners, which she leads alongside two partners and eight principals. Among the firm’s works are the Yale School of Art in New Haven, Connecticut, the 21c Museum Hotels across the South and Midwest, and the 122 Community Arts Center in New York City. Berke is the dean of the Yale School of Architecture, the first woman to hold the position. She has been on faculty at Yale since 1987. In 2012, she was the inaugural recipient of the Berkeley-Rupp Prize at the University of California at Berkeley. She is a board member of the James Howell Foundation, and a member of the board of directors of Yaddo. Berke is a graduate of the Rhode Island School of Design and The City University of New York. In 2005, she was awarded an Honorary Doctorate of Fine Arts from RISD.

10.14.2014--Elena Canovas, Senior Lecturer, at the Sam Fox School at WUSTL. Photo by Joe Angeles/WUSTL PhotosElena Cánovas
Principal, aSZ arquitectes
Professor of Practice, Sam Fox School of Design & Visual Arts, Washington University in St. Louis

Elena Cánovas is principal of aSZ arquitectes, which she co-founded with Antonio Sanmartín in Barcelona in 1996 after several years of joint professional and academic experiences. Projects by the firm have included the Badalona Central Library, the Santiago de Compostela Towers at the Cidade da Cultura, the Vidrá Public Housing, the Rianxo Auditorium, the Gavá seafront units, the Capuchinas Building for Huesca University, and the Tramway system for Barcelona. Canovas has been an associate professor in design projects at Escola Técnica Superior d’Arquitectura de Barcelona (ETSAB, UPC) since 1993, and has served as coordinator of the first-year design studio since 2009. She is a professor of practice in the Sam Fox School of Architecture & Urban Design at Washington University in St. Louis and has been a lecturer abroad for the Graduate School of Architecture & Urban Design’s international summer studio in Barcelona since 2007. She is working on her PHD on Contemporary Public Space, and its chances in sprawl cities.

joycehwang-photo2_webJoyce Hwang, AIA, NCARB
Director, Ants of the Prairie

Associate Professor, School of Architecture and Planning, University at Buffalo

Joyce Hwang is an associate professor of architecture at the University at Buffalo, State University of New York, and is the director of Ants of the Prairie, an office of architectural practice and research that focuses on confronting contemporary ecological conditions through creative means. Currently she is developing a series of projects that incorporate wildlife habitats into constructed environments. Hwang is a recipient of the Architectural League Emerging Voices Award (2014), the New York Foundation for the Arts (NYFA) Fellowship (2013), the MacDowell Colony Fellowship (2016, 2011), and is a co-editor of Beyond Patronage: Reconsidering Models of Practice (Actar, 2015). A registered architect in New York State, she has practiced with offices in New York, Philadelphia, San Francisco, and Barcelona, Spain. Hwang earned her MArch from Princeton University and BArch from Cornell University, where she received the Charles Goodwin Sands Memorial Bronze Medal.

jeff-ryan-headshot_webJeff Ryan, AIA, LEED AP
Director of Design and Principal, Christner Inc.

Jeff Ryan is the director of design at Christner, Inc. Ryan earned his BArch from Tulane University and his MArch from the University of Texas at Austin. He has over 25 years of experience practicing architecture, and has worked as a project designer for HOK, CannonDesign, and Danze Blood. Additionally, Ryan has taught design studios at Washington University and the University of Texas at Austin. His work includes projects in higher education, science, research, healthcare, as well as corporate office buildings and headquarters, and a large aviation project. He has completed several international projects and his work can be seen throughout the Midwest. Ryan’s focus is on how the particular circumstance of each project can inform the making of places that have a genuine and meaningful impact on their users