Committee on Architecture for Education

Connecting research with design, and a wide audience: the Social Science and Architecture Committee at the AIANY Chapter 

01-08-2019 13:52

Join us for an exciting conversation with Melissa Marsh and Evie Klein – two extraordinary leaders in design and research. Their combined expertise in social science and design integration led to the founding of the AIANY Social Science and Architecture Committee in 2015. The events, programs, and conversations hosted by the committee have pushed the edges of architecture further afield to engage in occupant experience as a determinant of space. Check out their bios, committee webpage and links to AIANY Social Science and Architecture Committee events!


Melissa Marsh and Evie Klein co-founded the Social Science + Architecture Committee for the AIA NY Chapter in 2016. They are joining the AIA CAE Research Task Force conversation to discuss ways they are imagining sharing resources that have emerged from the SS+A Committee’s programs (through a grant they received from AIA NY to do just that). Their bios and a link to their AIANY committee page are below, along with a list and links to information about the programs they have created and hosted for your reference.


AIANY Social Science and Architecture Committee Webpage


Evie Klein in an architect and planner with expertise in the social and psychological impact of built environments in higher education and cultural institutions. She is a founding member of the User Designed Information Group (UDIG) at the Center for Human Environments, CUNY, where she is currently a doctoral candidate in Environmental Psychology. Her research focuses on how the social sciences can contribute to design processes. She teaches Environmental Psychology at Pratt Institute. Prior to her doctoral studies, she was the Assistant Vice President in NYU’s Office of Strategic Assessment, Planning & Design, overseeing facilities planning and space management. She received her B.A. from Vassar College and her Master of Architecture from UCLA. 


Melissa Marsh is Founder and Executive Director of PLASTARC (, a social research, workplace innovation, and real estate strategy firm dedicated to shifting the metrics associated with workplace from 'square feet and inches' to 'occupant satisfaction and performance.' Melissa also leads the Occupant Experience discipline at Savills Studley. With an undergraduate degree in social science and a Master of Architecture from MIT, Melissa is an active contributor to professional and research communities associated with the human factors and the built environment, including Worktech, AIA, CoreNet, IFMA, and EDRA.


Here is a listing of most of the AIANY Social Science and Architecture Committee events, with links to related articles and some videos 2015-2018

General Coverage

Launch of committee  - press release


Edge Collaborations: Creative Partnerships with Social Science -- August 6, 2015


Program, Program, Program – Feb 23, 2016

Exploring the Past, Defining the Future – April 20, 2016

Education of an Architect: Incorporating Social Science – June 8, 2016  

Walk the Talk: An Example of Successful Social Science and Design Integration – Archtober 18, 2016

Designing for People Using Evidence: WELL, LEED and what’s next? – September 19, 2016

Video only no article:

I Love this Place! Exceptional Design Driven by Social Research – December 5, 2016


Myth Busters: Social Research Serving Different Typologies – Feb 22

Hesitations & Constraints: Understanding Barriers to Social Research in Practice – April 24

Hindsight is 20/20: The Power of Post-Occupancy – June 11

Video only, no article:

Social Science & Architecture History Primer – October 25

In Pursuit of Performance: Finance & Social Evidence of Success – Dec 11


Bridging Qualitative and Quantitative Data – April 9,  2018

[article and video not yet available]

Lighting with People in Mind – May 21, 2018

[article and video not yet available]

Fall Film Night: Living Salk Institute - 5 September 2018 [article and video not yet available]

Workplace Design Part II: Coworking – 23 Archtober 2018 [article and video not yet available]

Social Science and Architecture Primer: Activists – November 19

Video only, no article:

Remix Resample Remaster: Identity and Making Architecture – December 11

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