Faiza Moatasim


Faiza Moatasim is Assistant Professor of Architecture in Urbanism and Urban Design at the USC School of Architecture. She specializes in history and theory of architecture and urban design, modern colonial and post-colonial architecture and urbanism, low-income housing and urban informality. Moatasim’s research explores how the agency of individuals and communities in shaping their urban built environments, using their personal resources and political connections, is integral to our understanding of the planning, functioning, and everyday lived experiences of cities around the world. Her research has been supported by the Social Science Research Council, American Institute of Pakistan Studies, Mellon Foundation, International Institute for Asian Studies, Teagle Foundation and Foundation for Urban and Regional Studies.

Affiliated Faculty

Alison B. Hirsch


Alison B. Hirsch, FAAR, is a landscape theorist, historian and designer. Both her design and written work focus on how understanding cultural practices and social histories and memories can (and should) contribute to the design of meaningful places. As Director of the Landscape Architecture + Urbanism program, Alison has established the Landscape Justice Initiative which serves as a platform to address questions of environmental, spatial and climate justice at local and systemic scales

Sascha Delz


Sascha Delz is an architect and researcher working at the intersection of architecture, urban design, and urban studies. He holds a Master’s degree in Architecture and a Doctor of Science from the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Zurich (ETH Zurich). Engaging with contemporary urbanization processes, his research focuses on how specific political-economic frameworks influence the manifestation of architecture, urban form and living environments. Addressing challenges of uneven development, asymmetric cooperation setups, and exclusive distribution of urban resources, he is particularly interested in advancing knowledge on more equitable and collaborative practices of urban production, as well as non-profit models of adequate and affordable housing.

Aroussiak Gabrielian


Aroussiak Gabrielian is a scholar-practitioner working across the fields of Landscape Architecture and Media Arts. Her scholarship focuses on both materialist perspectives on the living world of landscape matter, and the practice of imaging and imagining landscape, addressing both landscape’s material and its representation. Aroussiak is currently working on a book manuscript emerging from her doctoral research, Near-Extinction Rituals, which aims to torque our imaginaries to help us re-think our interactions with both human and non-human agents on this planet.

Yo-ichiro Hakomori


Yo-ichiro Hakomori is a Design Principal at DesignARC – Los Angeles, and StudioHAU. DesignARC – Los Angeles is a multi-disciplinary design studio with a wide range of projects. Their work includes single and multi-family residential, small commercial, educational, and public – civic projects with work throughout the United States and parts of Asia. Hakomori received his Master of Architecture from the Graduate School of Architecture and Urban Planning at the University of California, Los Angeles, and a Doctor of Engineering in Architecture from the University of Tokyo.

Ginger Nolan


Ginger Nolan is a historian and theorist of architecture and urbanism. Her scholarship examines intersections between nootechnologies, design aesthetics, and constructions of race. Before joining the University of Southern California, she held a postdoctoral fellowship at Basel University’s department of Urban Studies. She has also taught at Pratt Institute and the School of Visual Arts, and she was a teaching fellow at Columbia University’s Institute of Comparative Literature and Society. Her research has been supported by the Social Science Research Council, the Deutscher Akademischer Austausch Dienst, the Terra Foundation of American Art, and the Graham Foundation of Art and Architecture. She pursues collective forms of scholarship through her involvement with the Global Architecture History Theory Collaborative and with Aggregate’s Systems and the South group.

Alex Robinson


Alex Robinson is a landscape architect, researcher, and scholar. His work seeks to reinvent our most consequential anthropogenic landscapes through collective authorship, multidisciplinary tools, and community engagement. As an Associate Professor in the Landscape Architecture + Urbanism program, he researches how civic infrastructure can function as landscape, exploring methods to re-envision ecological function and community value.

Marcos Sánchez


Marcos Sánchez teaches graduate and undergraduate studios as well as seminars in the history and theory of architecture at the University of Southern California. He has previously held teaching positions at Southern California Institute of Architecture (SCI-Arc) and Bergen School of Architecture in Norway. With Mark Wasiuta, Sánchez is partner in the office International House of Architecture (IHA). Their book, Environmental Communications: Contact High, forthcoming from Columbia University Press, is the first major survey of the prolific West Coast media collective, Environmental Communications. Sánchez’s work has been shown at the Chicago Architecture Biennial, Istanbul Design Biennale, the New Museum of Contemporary Art and LAXArt Gallery in Los Angeles. Recent writing has appeared in the journals ArtLies and Domus as well as the edited collection Radical Pedagogies, forthcoming from MIT Press.

Trudi Sandmeier


Trudi Sandmeier is an Associate Professor of Practice in Architecture at the University of Southern California (USC). She holds a B.A. in History from the University of California, Los Angeles and an M.A. in Historic Preservation Planning from Cornell University. She began teaching at USC in 2003 and since 2011 has served as a full-time faculty member and program director. Previously, from 2000 to 2011, she worked for the Los Angeles Conservancy, the largest local historic preservation non-profit in the U.S., holding the titles of Preservation Advocate, Broadway Initiative Coordinator, and Director of Education.

The Center For City Design @ USC Architecture was founded in 2022 to advance research and design that address spatial precarity in our cities