Nancy Clark, School of Architecture

What is your current role and what does it entail?
I am Director of the UF Center for Hydro-generated Urbanism (CHU), an international initiative that provides leadership in urban resilience research and development for coastal and fluvial cities around the world through collaborative project-based research, workshops and conferences, publications and exhibitions. I also teach undergraduate and graduate design studios and am coordinator of the UF DCP Paris Studies Program.

How long have you been at DCP and what previous roles have you served here?
I came to UF from New York City in 1994. I was tenured and promoted to Associate Professor in 2001 and over the years since then, I have served as Graduate Coordinator (2007-2009) and as Assistant Director Head of Graduate Programs (2009-2014). I founded UF G|SoA Global Lab in 2007, an ongoing cross-disciplinary research initiative focused on the study of emergent global trajectories in architectural practice, building technology and urban policy making. The primary mission of the lab is exploring innovative forms of research and analysis as well as new paradigms for practice and the built environment.

What inspires you?
Teaching and collaborating with the next generation of architects and designers is a privilege and inspiration. The students I enjoy working with most bring unexpected perspectives to imagining the future of architecture and cities.

Who are the most influential people in your life?
My mother. She has taught me through the example of her own life the importance of hard work and fortitude. My son. He reminds me to appreciate what is special in the everyday.

What do you think is the most exciting trend in your field today?
We are entering an interesting new era for architecture and urban development that is defined by an increased focus on resiliency in the built environment. Innovations in technology are challenging traditional building materials and construction techniques from robotic construction and 3D printed buildings to bio-inspired and self-healing materials. Cities are rethinking how to organize their spaces and are reconsidering the relationship between natural systems and land development patterns. An awareness of the importance of resource management is provoking cities to consider and implement new urban measures that are leading us to zero energy cities, urban reforestation, green-blue infrastructure, floating communities, high-rise factories and micro cities. Collaboration will become more and more critical in order to realize these complex projects and experts in fields such as environmental science, social anthropology, economics and policy will be included as an integral part of design teams as we increasingly apply an interdisciplinary approach to the future of our cities.

 

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