Flagship Projects

Advanced Data Visualization Project

Directors: David Benjamin and Laura Kurgan

The world faces an ever-growing deluge of data that demands new and innovative ways of thinking. Developing clear, sophisticated, and accessible visualizations for existing and future data sets is a vital part of understanding and leading an increasingly data-centric world.

Sustaining its mandate for global thought leadership surrounding the future of cities, and with the support of Thomson Reuters, the Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation (GSAPP) at Columbia is at the forefront of a university-wide project on the future of data visualization, the Advanced Data Visualization Project (ADVP).

Hosted at GSAPP, the ADVP brings together an interdisciplinary group from within Columbia and beyond to encourage diverse thinking around all facets of data visualization.

The first year of the ADVP establishes a platform for large-scale experiments culminating in the establishment of a formal Institute for Advanced Data Visualization. Led by Laura Kurgan (Director of the Spatial Information Design Lab at GSAPP) and David Benjamin (Director of the Living Architecture Lab at GSAPP), the ADVP initially includes six interdisciplinary visualization projects as well as studio courses, events, an exhibition, and a publication to engage students and the public.

The Energy Issue

Director: Troy Conrad Therrien
The Energy Issue is a GSAPP initiative to make energy a cultural issue, launched in partnership with Oldcastle BuildingEnvelope®.

Collecting Architecture Territories

Critics: Craig Buckley, Mark Wasiuta
Collecting Architecture Territories samples and presents the research  of twin studio and seminar courses held at Columbia University’s Graduate School of Architecture  Planning and Preservation (GSAPP) that have emerged from an art-architecture, cultural-academic collaboration between the DESTE Foundation for Contemporary Art and GSAPP. The studio and seminar reflect on the relationship between architecture and collecting, considering architecture both as an agent that organizes, supports, and informs various contemporary collecting practices, and as an object of collection in its own right. In tandem with DESTE and GSAPP a team of graduate students in the Department of Architecture at the University of Thessaly have been invited to exhibit their own research developed in parallel to the project’s theme.  


Directors: Phillip Anzalone and Scott Marble
Critics: David Benjamin, Laura Kurgan, Scott Marble

The Columbia Building Intelligence Project (C-BIP) is a three-year pilot project designed to explore new forms of technology-enabled collaboration within and between the various sectors of the architecture, engineering, and construction industry. The project grows out of an interest in using emerging technologies and the increasing trends toward more integrated forms of practice to address the chronic adversarial atmosphere that has inhibited the progress of our industry for many years. In addition, C-BIP works with the premise that we cannot change the future of our industry without transforming the education of our future leaders, which begins with a renewed engagement between academia and industry.

Experiments in Motion

Critics: Jeffrey Inaba, Geoff Manaugh, Nicola Twilley, Jürgen Mayer H., Marc Kushner

Experiments in Motion is a research initiative conducted by the Columbia University Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation in partnership with Audi of America to develop and test new paradigms in the relationship between motion, mobility and design. The program will draw from global thought leaders from around the university, architecture and design professionals, and an expanded network of urban mobility experts from New York City and Audi. The program is a pilot project of the Audi Urban Future Initiative.

Materials Project

Chair: Michael Bell