“No art ever came out of not risking your neck.”
Eudora Welty, 1956
Launched in 2015, Urban@UW is a university-wide initiative dedicated to inclusive, data-driven innovation for the future of cities. Using state-of-the-art research and practice in a broad range of fields, from engineering to the humanities, we are a bridging organization between academics and policymakers, an incubator and accelerator for urban research, and an educator of the next generation of urban scholars and practitioners. For more on our people, projects, and mission, click here.
The Future of Work and Workers
What worries you most—and/or excites you most—about the future of work and workers? Put another way: What will be the most consequential changes in the world of work and workers, and what anxieties and possibilities will they produce? I am part of a collaborative research group exploring these questions at the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences at Stanford. One product of the work thus far has been a series of essays in Pacific Standard, which you can explore here.
The Bezos Center for Innovation at MOHAI
I was the lead curatorial advisor for the Bezos Center for Innovation, which opened in the fall of 2013 at the Museum of History and Industry in Seattle. The project uses the story of Seattle innovators - from industry, politics, arts, and philanthopy - to explore the histories of invention and creativity, and better understand how and why innovation grows in particular places. More about the Bezos Center here.
Startup Hall is a hub for Seattle’s most innovative entrepreneurs, located in the heart of the University District. I'm a member of its advisory board. Forged by a unique public-private partnership of the region’s leading research university, the world’s top entrepreneurial education non-profit, the nation’s #1 startup accelerator and the Pacific Northwest’s #1 seed-stage venture capital fund,Startup Hall exists to help exceptional founders build the next generation of world-leading companies here in the Pacific Northwest. More on this venture here.
The Lake Union Lab
Seattle's Lake Union and the neighborhoods that ring its shores presents two centuries of North American urban history in microcosm. In 2013, 75 UW undergraduates in my urban history survey performed microhistorical analyses of blocks in the South Lake Union neighborhood, now a burgeoning tech district. This became the basis for the South Lake Union Stories digital history project, one of several Lake Union Lab projects being advanced by a multidisciplinary group of UW faculty. You can read more about it in my interviews about the project with HNN and Crosscut.
The Shenzhen - Silicon Valley - Bangalore Project
This collaboration with my former Stanford colleague Karen Seto explored the globalization of the American-style suburb and its environmental and social consequences. Focusing on three established and emergent hubs of high-technology production, the project employed quantitative and qualitative analysis to understand the role of past and present politics, economics, and culture on the shape, scale, and speed of growth. Learn more about this project here.