Adriana holds a dual Master’s degree in Architecture, and City and Regional Planning from the University of California at Berkeley. Born and raised in Colombia (S.A), she received a BS Arch (Honors) from the University of Virginia in 2004. After working for Rafael Viñoly Architects, and OPX Global in Washington DC, Adriana moved to California to begin her graduate studies in 2007. As a 2010 John K. Branner Fellow, Adriana traveled the world, focusing her research, FAVELA CHIC, on socio-cultural aspects of design, particularly analyzing the role and relationship between architecture, planning and urban informality. Adriana began FAVELissues in January 2010.
Andrew lives in Moscow, Idaho where he is a partner in a budding design-build studio. He earned a BA from Brigham Young University in International Law and Diplomacy with a Latin American Studies emphasis before redirecting his studies to architecture, earning a Bachelor and Master of Architecture from the University of Idaho where he helped manage the UI Sustainability Center. Andy studies informal development because he believes that in its creative exuberance and grounded common sense it has much to teach those of us troubleshooting the myriad problems facing the “developed” nations.
Bethany Opalach is a Bay Area architect whose research has deemphasized the boundaries between professional and nonprofessional designers, and formal, informal, and vernacular architecture. She is the author of “Reading the Architecture of Squatter Settlements: The Case of São Paulo, Brazil,” (Traditional Dwellings and Settlements Review, Fall 1997.) She is currently researching transformative public design projects in low-income neighborhoods in the US. Bethany received a B. A. in Studio Art from the University of California, Santa Cruz, and an M. Arch. from the University of California, Berkeley. In 2008, she founded Bethany Opalach Architecture, a firm focused on residential and commercial design for private and nonprofit clients.
Jennifer Renteria is a multidisciplinary designer and writer whose research and projects, which often utilize photography and multimedia, center around urban informality and the relationship between the urban environment and nature. Her work, both independent and collaborative, can be found in various academic and cultural publications, including Cities: The International Journal of Urban Policy and Planning and Plataforma Urbana. Renteria studied history and visual arts at Bowdoin College and received her Master’s in Landscape Architecture from the University of Southern California. To see more of her work, visit: www.studiorenteria.com
Lubaina is a planner and an urban activist. She holds a dual masters degree in Architecture and City and Regional Planning from the University of California at Berkeley. She was born and raised in Mumbai, India where she completed her undergraduate education in Architecture (B-Arch) from Mumbai University at the Kamla Raheja Vidhyanidhi Institute of Architecture (KRVIA) in 2006. Before moving to California, she worked as a research fellow, a teacher and as an architect at KRVIA, working with issues of urban poverty and housing. At Berkeley, she completed a masters’ thesis titled “Transience as a “Way of Life”: Internal Migrations, Development Induced Displacements and the Politics of Urban Planning in India”. She is committed to continuing this research and further understanding the relationship of employment, labor and access to sustainable housing within the urban realm.
Namrata is a planner and urban researcher. She holds dual Master’s in Architecture and City Planning from the University of California, Berkeley and Bachelors in Architecture from KRVIA, Mumbai University. She has worked as an architect for Rahul Mehrotra and Associates and has carried out research on the design and policy of low income housing in India at the Design Cell, KRVIA. Namrata’s current interests and research area focused on citizenship and urban claims, as well as on the mechanisms through which these claims are either manifested or obscured by design and planning.
Paula has a PhD in economics from Mines ParisTech. Her PhD research considered the evaluation of impacts in two innovative slum policies on households’ welfare (in Mumbai and Medellin). She is an Environmental Engineer from the Escuela de Ingenieria de Antioquia in Colombia and has a Masters degree in environmental and development economics from the Ecole Polytechnique in Paris. In the past years Paula has been working in topics related to energy, climate change and slum redevelopment. Paula recently joined the World Bank’s Young Professionals Program.
Proyectos Arqui 5 :: Silvia Soonets + Isabel Pocaterra + Maria Ines Pocaterra
Proyectos Arqui 5 is a team of three architects working in Caracas. Graduates from the Simon Bolivar University in Caracas, Silvia Soonets and Isabel Pocaterra began collaborating in 1987; they were later joined by Maria Ines Pocaterra, a graduate from the same university. Arqui 5’s interests around social housing and urban design, lead around several Upgrade Projects on informal settlements in 1999 (“barrios” in Venezuela). Their projects have been recognized by various local and international awards, such as the Urban Design Prize in the Quito Biennale in 2004 and the Gold Global Holcim Award for Sustainable Construction in 2006. Moreover, Arqui 5’s projects were exhibited in the Venetia Biennale in 2006 and are part of the Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum’s “Design with the Other 90%: CITIES” exhibit taking place (Fall 2011). In addition to their focus on technical and social issues surrounding upgrading projects, Arqui 5’s interest address the expanding social role of architects, as well as the difficulties in executing these types of projects.
Tucker is an urban geography convert. His roots are in sexual health promotion, HIV prevention and AIDS activism. He holds an undergraduate degree in International Relations from the George Washington University in Washington, DC and a Master of Public Health from the University of Buenos Aires. A passion for social justice movements and urban health led Tucker to examine informal housing settlements as sites of state intervention as well as empowerment and resistance. He is currently working towards a PhD in Human Geography and Urban Studies from the London School of Economics and Political Science. His research focuses on the current paradigm of favela integration and urban renewal in Rio de Janeiro, particularly the transformation of favela-space and related power dynamics.
Fernando Luiz Lara is a Brazilian architect who works on Latin American 20th century architecture with emphasis on the dissemination of its values beyond the traditional disciplinary boundaries. At the University of Texas at Austin, Fernando Lara teaches seminars on 20th century Latin American architecture and urbanism, as well as studios related to the continent’s current urban challenges. In The Rise of Popular Modernist Architecture in Brazil, published in 2008 by the University Press of Florida or in his several articles Prof. Lara has discussed the modern and the contemporary Brazilian architecture, its meaning, context and social-economic insertion. His latest publications look at the modernist vocabulary and spatiality being appropriated by the humblest favela dwellers. In 2005, he founded Studio Toró, a non-profit devoted to the challenges of water conservation and urban flooding in Latin America.
Jose is pursuing a PhD in Urban Planning from the University of Columbia. He holds a master’s degree in the Latin American Studies from the University of California, Berkeley, and two BA degrees from the University of Los Andes in Colombia: one in Political Science (2004) and one in History (2005). He has worked as a high school professor, as a Bogota’s city councilor assistants on citizen participation, and as an editorial coordinator in the School of Social Sciences at the University of los Andes. Jose’s long-standing academic interests revolve around regimes governing in Latin American cities, with a particular focus on notions of urban development, planning knowledge, governance and citizenship, as well as practices of spatial segregations and urban displacement. His current research focuses on the planning and implementation of urban redevelopment policies in downtown Bogotá.
Kirsten is an artist and designer who holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts from The School of the Art Institute of Chicago and a post-graduate certificate in public housing design from Escola da Cidade. Kirsten works within the intersections of architecture, art education and public art, developing projects where community and education-based processes have a prominent roll in public space design. While living in Chicago Kirsten collaborated with public schools, environmental organizations and community groups on murals and public garden projects. In 2010 she was a US Fulbright Fellow in Brazil, researching methods for the creation public space through design and public art. Kirsten currently lives in São Paulo, Brazil where she is working on several community-based fine art, education and design projects.