Skip Navigation

Common Lecture Series - Spring 2021

Worldwide @ 4:00 pm (GMT-5), unless otherwise noted (*)

All lectures are remote-online via Zoom this semester. If not enrolled in the course and you wish to attend please request a link via Gail McKenzie @

*Please note : Links to view previous lectures can be streamed only by people with current Rutgers NetIDs.

Wed Jan 20, 2021 WELCOME 2021  
Wed Jan 27, 2021


View Lecture (must have NetID)

Prof. Nina-Marie Lister is Graduate Director of the School of Urban Planning at Ryerson University where she founded and directs the Ecological Design Lab. Her work as a planner and landscape ecologist connects people to nature in our cities. Her research is funded by the federal government and is published widely, focused on green infrastructure design for climate resilience and human wellbeing. Recognized by the Canadian Green Building Council’s excellence and leadership awards, Lister was nominated among Planetizen’s Most Influential Urbanists.

Wed Feb 3, 2021


View Lecture (must have NetID)

Ayo Harrington has been involved in social justice issues most of her life with a strong focus on reclaiming land to repurpose it for public benefit and use. In the 1980s helped gut and rebuild abandoned buildings to provide affordable housing. In 1999, she founded Friends of the New York African Burial Ground to ensure adherence to the Federal MOU outlining the agreement between the Federal government and the descendant community for the site. Ayo has cleared garbage strewn, vacant lots turning them into community gardens and founded 30-year-old Orchard Alley one of the largest community gardens located on the Lower East Side of New York City. In 2018, Ayo co-founded the East River Alliance.


Creative and Sustainable Place Making Through Trans-active Engagement.
View Lecture (must have NetID)

Landscape architecture has been the most viable way to positively shape place, and give vulnerable populations not only a voice, but a tool for strengthening and sustaining the communities in which they live. The most creative and sustainable design and place making evolves from the creativity, knowledge of place, and expertise of both landscape architects and the communities they serve.  This presentation will explore projects that use engagement techniques and trans-active design for creative and sustainable place making.

Wed Feb 17, 2021 ADVISING SESSIONS  
Wed Feb 24, 2021 GARETH DOHERTY

Critical Landscapes
View Lecture (must have RU NetID)

I will present the work of the Critical Landscapes Design Lab at Harvard Graduate School of Design which was established as “a space for speculation on people and places.” The aim of the Lab is to engage with pressing socio-ecological issues across the postcolonial and Islamic worlds where the design disciplines—and especially landscape architecture—can imagine better futures. The work of the Lab is based on two questions: How can theoretical, educational, and design possibilities be expanded and diversified through working in societies where there is no formal landscape architecture discipline? How can landscape architects more sensitively work outside of their own social contexts with respect and deference for others’ values and ways of life? These questions will be addressed in the lecture through projects in the Arabian peninsula, Ireland and the UK, the Caribbean, and Brazil and West Africa.

Gareth Doherty is an Associate Professor of Landscape Architecture and Director of the MLA program at Harvard Graduate School of Design.

Wed Mar 3, 2021


Landscape designer and educator, Julia Watson is a leading expert in the field of Lo—TEK nature-based technologies for the built environment and climate-resilient design. Her bestselling book with Taschen, Lo-TEK: Design by Radical Indigenism has been featured in The New York Times, The Guardian, Monocle, Architectural Digest, and more. Regularly teaching at Harvard and Columbia University, Julia’s studio work involves landscape and urban design, along with consulting with brands on sustainability. In her studio, she collaborates with horticulturist  Marie Salembier as Watson Salembier, with a focus on rewilding.

Julia has written for Topos, Landscape Architecture Frontier, ioARCH, Kerb, Water Urbanisms East and co-authored A Spiritual Guide to Bali’s UNESCO World Heritage. She’s a 2020 TED speaker, and a fellow of Summit REALITY, Pop!tech, & The Christensen Fund.

Wed Mar 10, 2021


Craig Verzone is a principal at Verzone Woods Architectes, a collaborative multi- disciplinary studio working within the overlapping realms of landscape, urban design and architecture. Verzone graduated from Cornell University as a Presidential Scholar with a Bachelors degree in landscape architecture and from the Harvard University Graduate School of Design with a Masters degree in Urban Design. In 1995 he moved to Europe and began his partnership with architect Cristina Woods thus establishing VWA.

Wed Mar 24, 2021 MCKENNA COLE  
Wed Mar 31, 2021 ALEX OLSON  
Wed Apr 7, 2021 KIMBERLY TRYBA  
Wed Apr 14, 2021 KATIE SHIMA  
Wed Apr 21, 2021 JUSTINE HOLZMAN  
Wed Apr 28, 2021 CLOSING SESSION  

See List of previous semesters Common Lectures