CLASS OF 2021

Gabrielle Redding

Gabrielle’s work at the GSD is focused on gender-inclusive and feminist design, particularly how a history of male-centric architecture practice and its corresponding design elements have led to particular spaces allowing for a higher risk of sexual and gender-based violence and harassment. Her interests lie in social-spatial planning and redefining the responsibility that designers and architects have in forming nonviolent environments, with an aim to understand the link between practice and public safety. Through using that relationship, she intends to identify new guidelines for best practices and standards directly influencing sexual violence.

In 2019 she spoke about feminist public space and design research at Leading Innovation at Work’s ‘Women of CRE and Proptech’ online conference.

She holds a Bachelor of Architecture from the New York Institute of Technology, where she led a team of students in the redesign of a neglected, mid-block green space for a neighborhood in Harlem using participatory design practices. She also gave the student commencement address for the class of 2019.

She’s previously worked with Hines, FXCollaborative, and as a Community Impact Research Intern at Gensler.

Jack Chen

Jack holds a Bachelor of Architecture from Southeast University in Nanjing, China and is a first-year candidate for the Master in Design Studies Program, with a concentration in Risk and Resilience. As a South African of Chinese descent, Jack grew up as an ‘outsider’ in the social climate of a post-Apartheid country. Jack’s interest began with the issue of boundary, not only physically but also socially.  The transformation of historical and contemporary context of the abolishment of Apartheid, where the lingering problem was the remnant of the built and societal environment designed for the Apartheid. The definition of boundary can be complex; what can we do as designers in an ever-changing world of societal, economic, or climatic risks?

Kira Clingen

Kira Clingen is a dual degree Master in Landscape Architecture and Master in Design Studies in Risk and Resilience candidate. 

She is a 2016-2017 Thomas J. Watson Fellow, during which time she pursued a year-long project titled “Adapting to Solastalgia: Familial Vulnerability to Climate Change,” and conducted research in Mauritius and Karen State, Myanmar. 

Prior to coming to the GSD she earned a B.S. in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology and B.A. in Environmental Policy Studies and Asian Studies from Rice University. She is a contributor to SAGE International Australia’s policy blog and most recently had a chapter published in An Ecotopian Lexicon

Her design work has been featured in Platform 11 and 12, as well as CLOG journal. She is interested in the relationship between the sciences, specifically ecology, and the design disciplines, as well as preparation landscapes across the United States. 

Fei Xiong

Fei’s previous architectural projects aimed to address urban spatial scarcity with concepts of distributing surplus and developing new spatial models. His work includes both domestic and international models, which arise from both politics-driven and economics-driven agendas. Seeking more promising and applicable solutions within the inevitable constraints of budget, political pressure, and social environment has been his professional pursuit. He holds a Bachelor of Architecture from Tongji University.

Fei is currently doing research on “informality”. His projects include constituting the informal market (hawker) in Lagos and exploring new technologies for waste management in Mansheyat Nasir(the garbage city), Cairo. The dynamics of current urban spaces have led to a new urban narrative, transforming from fixing to strengthening, and from stitching to darning. Fei believes that the failure of formality offers an exceptional opportunity: a new urbanism, which does not regard cities as permanent entities, but territories with potentials. Fei hopes to see uncertainty as a tool, not a risk, to redefine our relationship with cities, not formal, but informal.

Ayaka Yamashita

Ayaka is a Fulbright graduate student in Design Studies (Risk and Resilience) at Harvard Graduate School of Design. She is interested in community revitalization through design, especially in empowering people through cultural programming projects.

Prior to attending the GSD, Ayaka explored multiple areas of study and work, both in Japan and Southeast Asia: environmental data analysis during her bachelor’s degree in Agro-informatics Health; socioeconomic field research during her master’s in Global Health; business interventions in the international development sector; and art and design approaches to cultural preservation and education by establishing her own nonprofit.

EDAYA, a nonprofit Ayaka co-founded in 2012, has conducted various bamboo design/art projects to accelerate social innovation and promote the rediscovery of the value of local Asian traditions in a global context. She was chosen by AERA, a Japanese business magazine, as “an upcoming Japanese woman contributing to the 21st century” in 2015. In 2017, she published her first book, “Redesigning the Self and Society.” She was also a delegate/ panelist for the program “Connecting The Bridges “Women Entrepreneurs in Asia-Pacific Countries 2018” organized by Cabinet Office, Government of Japan.

She holds a Bachelor of Agriculture and Master of Health Sciences from the University of Tokyo.

Kelsey Wang

Kelsey is currently a candidate for the Master in Design Studies Program, with a concentration in Risk and Resilience.