Landscape Architecture

  • Alan Berger

Alan Berger: Infinite Suburbia

Wednesday, March 14, 2018 6:00pm
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Meyerson Hall, B3

210 South 34th Street, Philadelphia

Alan M. Berger is the Norman B. and Muriel Leventhal Professor of Advanced Urbanism and Professor of Landscape Architecture and Urban Design at MIT where he teaches courses open to the entire student body. He is founding director of MIT's P-REX lab, a research lab focused on environmental problems caused by urbanization, including the design, remediation, and reuse of waste landscapes worldwide. He is also Co-Director of MIT Norman B. Leventhal Center for Advanced Urbanism (LCAU). All of his research and work emphasizes the link between our consumption of natural resources, and the waste and destruction of landscape, to help us better understand how to proceed with redesigning around our wasteful lifestyles for more intelligent design and development outcomes. Unlike conventional practice, there are no scalar limits in his outlook or pedagogy: Projects are defined by the extent of the urban and environmental problems being addressed. He coined the term “Systemic Design” to describe the reintegration of disvalued landscapes into our urbanized territories and regional ecologies.

Berger's newly released anthology Infinite Suburbia (with Joel Kotkin, Celina Balderas Guzman) presents the global suburban expansion through the research of its 74 authors, and the coeditors' own perspectives and work. Previous award-winning books include Drosscape: Wasting Land in Urban America, and Reclaiming the American West, his other books include Designing the Reclaimed Landscape, The Infrastructural Monument and Scaling Infrastructure (with Alexander D’Hooghe), Nansha Coastal City: Landscape and Urbanism in the Pearl River Delta (with Margaret Crawford), Systemic Design Can Change the World, and Landscape + Urbanism Around the Bay of Mumbai (with Rahul Mehrotra), and LCAU’s 2013 Report on the State of Health + Urbanism (with Andrew Scott).

Prior to MIT Berger was Associate Professor of Landscape Architecture at Harvard-GSD, 2002-2008. He is a Prince Charitable Trusts Fellow of The American Academy in Rome. He is a Visiting Honorary Professor at Oslo School of Architecture (AHO). Alan is an alumnus of PennDesign’s MLA program, 1990 graduate.

Licensed landscape architects may register for CEU credit at the event.