Richard J. Weller is Professor and Co-Founder of the Ian L. McHarg Center. He is the former Chair of the Department Landscape Architecture at the University of Pennsylvania, serving from 2013 through 2022. He was the co-director of Room 4.1.3 – a design firm acknowledged with a Penn Press monograph (2005).
In over 30 years of practice, he has worked simultaneously as an academic and a consultant specializing in the formative stages of projects ranging across all scales. Weller’s work has been frequently awarded in international design competitions and exhibited in galleries such as the Guggenheim in New York, the Venice Biennale, the Museum of Contemporary Art in Sydney, the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston, the MAXXI Gallery in Rome, the Canadian Design Museum in Toronto and the Chinese Academy of Fine Art in Beijing.
He has published 7 books and well over 100 single-authored academic papers, book chapters and articles on the theory and practice of landscape architecture and urban design. He was also the founding Creative Director of the interdisciplinary journal of landscape architecture LA+.
Weller’s most recent research concerns global flashpoints between biodiversity and urban growth. This research is documented in his latest web-based platforms ‘The World Park Project’, ‘The Hotspot Cities Project’ and the ‘Atlas for the End of the World’. This work has been widely published, exhibited and reviewed.
Weller is an emeritus board member of the Landscape Architecture Foundation (LAF) in Washington DC and was inducted into the Academy of Fellows of the Council of Educators in Landscape Architecture (CELA) in 2020.
Weller taught advanced design studios and subjects in the history and theory of landscape architecture and urbanism. In 2012 he received a national (Australian) teaching award and in both 2017 and 2018 was voted by the Design Intelligence Survey as one of North America’s “most admired” teachers.