Mostafavi to step down as GSD dean

first_imgMohsen Mostafavi, dean of the Harvard Graduate School of Design (GSD) since January 2008, announced today that he will step down from the position at the end of the 2018-19 academic year.Over more than a decade as dean, Mostafavi has led efforts to strengthen and renew the GSD faculty, to expand and diversify the School’s degree programs and its student body, and to extend its scholarly impact both nationally and internationally. He has also enhanced its resources and physical plant and forged innovative collaborations with other parts of Harvard, as well as design practitioners worldwide. As the Alexander and Victoria Wiley Professor of Design, he plans to return to active service on the GSD faculty after a sabbatical year.“It has been a great honor and a privilege to be part of the GSD community as dean,” said Mostafavi. “The incredible diversity, talent, and passion of our students, faculty, and staff both inspire and affirm the School’s commitment to educating leaders in design, research, and scholarship to create a resilient, just, and beautiful world. I am proud of what we have accomplished together over the past 11 years, and I look forward to witnessing the School continue its collaborative ethos and engagement with Harvard and the world in the years to come.”“Although I have had the chance to work directly with Mohsen for only a short time, I know from my years on the Corporation how much his leadership has contributed to strengthening the Design School over more than a decade — and how much he has done to elevate the role of design within Harvard more broadly,” said President Larry Bacow. “Mohsen has led with imagination, energy, and dedication. Those qualities have strengthened the GSD’s position as a worldwide leader in design education and research and as a critical bridge between design theory and practice. He has also been an outstanding University citizen, not only in creatively connecting the Design School with other parts of Harvard but also in helping steer University-wide initiatives to fully embrace the arts and to create common spaces that contribute to our sense of community. All of us owe him our thanks.”A leading scholar of architecture and urbanism, Mostafavi guided the GSD through a period of growth, innovation, and change. His deanship brought about the strategic expansion of several degree programs, along with a roughly 50 percent increase in the GSD’s student body. Mostafavi has also worked to open doors to students from varied backgrounds, including through rising investment in financial aid. “I am proud of what we have accomplished together over the past 11 years, and I look forward to witnessing the School continue its collaborative ethos and engagement with Harvard and the world in the years to come.” — Mohsen Mostafavi Within its Master in Design Studies (M.Des.) program, the School has introduced new concentrations in fields linked to emerging research areas, such as critical conservation; energy and the environment; risk and resilience; urbanism, landscape, and ecology; and arts, design, and the public domain. In addition, the GSD has broadened its range of design studios for degree students, now in dozens of locations across the U.S. and around the world, while also significantly expanding its portfolio of executive education programs.Under Mostafavi’s leadership, the GSD faculty has grown from 62 to approximately 90, and new faculty have been recruited to chair the School’s three principal academic departments: architecture, landscape architecture, and urban planning and design. While building strength in these core areas, the School has pursued appointments intended to add strength in urbanism, sustainability, technology, social equity, and other areas of rising interest. Meanwhile, the GSD has taken steps to institute a tenure-track system for faculty appointments, improve mentoring, and energize the interplay of theory and practice within its faculty ranks.“Mohsen has led the academic growth of the GSD with an ambitious vision for the School and its impact on the world,” said Provost Alan Garber. “He has worked tirelessly to connect the GSD with other parts of the University, bringing design together with engineering, public health, law, public policy, and public administration. He has contributed to the vitality of the arts, enriching our intellectual life, and helped transform the spaces where our community gathers. The entire University has been fortunate to benefit from Mohsen’s creativity and dedication.”Alongside its ambitious efforts to expand research projects and educational opportunities abroad, the GSD recently launched a cross-disciplinary initiative on the future of American cities, designed to bring together experts and leaders from around the country to help cities tackle urgent challenges. In 2014, the GSD established the Harvard Center for Green Buildings and Cities, intended to inform and elevate sustainability practices in relation to the built environment. Overall, the School’s research portfolio has grown markedly over the past decade, boosted by a major increase in sponsored research funds.Throughout Mostafavi’s deanship, he and the School have been strong participants in advancing the One Harvard agenda. In the educational sphere, the GSD has launched an undergraduate concentration track in architecture studies, in collaboration with the Faculty of Arts and Sciences; a Master in Design Engineering program, in collaboration with the Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences; and a joint degree program in health and urbanization, in collaboration with the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. Cross-School research collaborations have multiplied. And Mostafavi himself has served as co-chair of the Harvard University Committee on the Arts as well as the Common Spaces initiative launched a decade ago by then-President Drew Faust.“It was a pleasure to work with Mohsen throughout my years in Mass Hall,” said Faust. “His leadership has strengthened the Design School, broadened its angle of vision, and amplified its impact across Harvard and throughout the world of design. He has also been a guiding light in our Common Spaces and arts initiatives, and a valued voice among the deans. I join many others in gratitude for his distinguished service as well as his friendship.”“I have had the pleasure of serving as a fellow dean for seven years with Mohsen and as co-chair of the Common Spaces initiative for 10 years,” said Lizabeth Cohen, the Howard Mumford Jones Professor of American History and former dean of the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study. “Working so closely with him has led me to admire his deep commitment to the role that architecture can play in improving our quality of life on the Harvard campus and to how the GSD, through partnering with other schools, can infuse design thinking into many intellectual domains. I have been struck over and over with Mohsen’s very original mind and his insightful and constructive contributions to important discussions. Under his deanship, the GSD has provided schooling in the power of design for many in the Harvard community, not just for its own students.”In his time as dean, Mostafavi led the GSD’s most ambitious fundraising campaign, Grounded Visionaries, the School’s component of The Harvard Campaign, which concluded in June. He oversaw plans for a significant expansion and renewal of the GSD’s physical plant, including renovations within Gund Hall and the acquisition and refurbishment of several nearby buildings. And he set in motion efforts to enhance the sense of community within the GSD, consistent with the goals of the spring 2018 report of the University-wide Task Force on Inclusion and Belonging.Mostafavi’s own widely published scholarly work focuses on modes and processes of urbanization and on the interface between technology and aesthetics. He came to the Harvard deanship from Cornell University, where he served as the Drukier Dean of the College of Architecture, Art and Planning and as the Wiesenberger Professor in Architecture. He previously served for nine years as chairman of the Architectural Association School of Architecture in London. Earlier in his career, he taught at the Harvard GSD and the University of Pennsylvania School of Design.Mostafavi is a trustee of Smith College and an honorary trustee of the Norman Foster Foundation. He served on the steering committee and the jury of the Aga Khan Award for Architecture, and he has chaired the jury of the European Union Prize for Contemporary Architecture – Mies van der Rohe Award, as well as the global, European, and North American juries of the LafargeHolcim Foundation Awards for Sustainable Construction. He has twice been named by DesignIntelligence as one of the most admired educators in architecture and design, in recognition of his commitment to advancing education, his strong support for faculty, and the “holistic, deep ecological and aesthetic” sense he brings “to the design conversation.”Bacow said that he and Garber plan to launch the search for a new dean soon. Meanwhile, he said, advice and nominations regarding the search may be sent in confidence to [email protected]last_img read more

Coal Fading From U.S. Energy Landscape

first_img FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Daniel J. Graber for UPI:This year will be the first time in history natural gas overtakes coal as the main source of electricity, the U.S. Energy Information Administration reports.“In EIA’s forecast, natural gas provides 33 percent of generation in 2016 while coal’s share falls to 32 percent,” the administration said in a short-term market forecast.The U.S. Interior Department in January announced the start of a review of the federal coal program to identify potential reforms. While the review is ongoing, the Interior Department is pausing new coal leasing on public lands, with continued mining under existing leases. The review process is expected to take three years.Natural gas is becoming the primary source of electricity in the nation. Prior to April 2015, the total monthly share of electricity generated by coal had always been greater than gas.Apart from federal considerations on cleaner power sources, the EIA’s report said coal has started to drop off in favor of natural gas because of lower costs. During an eight-year period ending in 2008, coal was less expensive than natural gas and helped coal dominate the energy landscape. Since the onset of the shale era in 2009, the price gap narrowed.The Supreme Court stayed implementation of the federal Clean Power Plan pending ongoing litigation. Nevertheless, EIA said some coal-plant operators will be faced with moving away from coal use or retiring plants altogether.EIA estimates total U.S. coal production will decline 3 percent this year as the country pushes a low-carbon agenda.Coal fading from U.S. energy landscape Coal Fading From U.S. Energy Landscapelast_img read more

West Java searches for 90 missing umrah pilgrims amid travel ban

first_img“We’re also coordinating with the travel agencies because they were the ones who managed their departure process,” he said, adding that he hoped the pilgrims were in good health.It has been six days since they left Indonesia for Saudi Arabia. An umrah trip usually lasts about 12 days.Read also: Saudi’s sudden ‘umrah’ ban leaves pilgrims heartbrokenAjam said there was a possibility that some of the 90 worshipers were not West Java citizens but had departed using services from travel agencies in the region.Responding to the matter, West Java governor Ridwan Kamil demanded the regional religious affairs office coordinate with Saudi Arabian government.Presidential spokesperson Fadjroel Rachman said on Friday that 1,685 Indonesian pilgrims were stranded in third countries during transit and that they were in the process of being flown back home by their respective airlines.Indonesia, the country with the largest Muslim population in the world, contributed the second-highest number of umrah pilgrims last year with 443,879 arrivals, according to the Saudi Hajj and Umrah Ministry.Saudi Arabia, on average, welcomes nearly 7 million umrah pilgrims annually. (eyc)Topics : Read also: Banning or wooing travelers in time of novel coronavirusThe office’s hajj and umrah division head Ajam Mustajam said 700 umrah pilgrims from the province had returned home. However, there were 90 pilgrims who booked their pilgrimage with four travel agencies in West Java whose whereabout remained unknown.”We are still figuring out whether the 90 people have reached the holy land [of Mecca] or are still in transit in another country,” he said in Bandung, West Java, on Tuesday during a coordination meeting regarding COVID-19 handling.Ajam added that the religious affairs office was continuing to coordinate with the religious affairs ministry to check the computerized integrated umrah and hajj system, which holds data on the registration, departure and return of pilgrims. The West Java Religious Affairs Office is tracking down 90 umrah (minor hajj) pilgrims who left for Saudi Arabia from Soekarno-Hatta International Airport in Tangerang, Banten, on Thursday – a day before Saudi Arabia announced a temporary ban on pilgrims to limit the spread of the coronavirus.On Friday, the Saudi kingdom placed Indonesia on a list of countries whose citizens were barred from visiting the two holy cities of Mecca and Medina amid the rapid global spread of the novel coronavirus.The decision left thousands of Indonesians stranded, some on their way to Saudi Arabia, others checked in at airports and still others arriving in the country.last_img read more

Back-to-back wins for UG in second-division cricket

first_imgTHE University of Guyana (UG) Trojans cricket team had a fruitful weekend with back-to-back wins in the Georgetown Cricket Association (GCA) New Building Society (NBS) second division 40-overs cricket competition at the Queen’s College ground.On Saturday, they edged out the Diplomats Sports Club by seven runs in an exciting, low-scoring fixture, while on Sunday they whipped Third Class by a whopping 137 runs.Against Diplomats, UG batted first, but were bowled out for 135 in 19.1 overs.Only Yogendra Singh troubled the bowlers. He led the attack with 56 runs. Shane Browne and Rayson Gill did the damage for Diplomats with figures of 5-22 and 4-55.In their time in the middle, Diplomats batsmen were routed for 128 after off-spinner Pavindra Persaud and medium pacer Yekini Favourite took four wickets each. Nigel Simpson showed the most resistance with a top score of 38.Meanwhile, on Sunday, it was left-arm spinner Oswald Benn, who did the damage for UG.In their clash against Third Class, UG won the toss and opted to take first strike. Led by Keon Roberts (45) and Melroy Stephenson Jr (36), the eventual winners were able to reach 205. Sunil Tulsidas led Third Class with 5-28.In reply, Third Class were restricted to 68 as Benn took 5-15 from six overs.  Favourite was again in the thick of things with 3-17 from seven overs.last_img read more