People: Pratt STEAMplant Collaborators

STEAMplant is an initiative borne from Pratt’s Math and Science department. With the goal of fostering interdisciplinary collaboration across campus, each STEAMplant team consists of (at a minimum) one Math & Science faculty, one other-departmental faculty/staff member, and a student fellow or resident.

The faculty and staff collaborators listed below represent a sample of Pratt affiliated persons that are interested and participating in STEAMplant projects.

For a full listing of the faculty of the Mathematics and Science Department, click this link. You can find information on faculty and staff in other departments by browsing the Pratt Institute website

Mathematics & Science Collaborators

Ágnes Mócsy

mocsyÁgnes is a theoretical nuclear physicist studying the matter that existed microseconds after the Big Bang, before protons, neutrons or atoms existed.

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This matter is recreated at two atom smashers, the Relativistic Heavy Ion Collider (RHIC) at Brookhaven National Lab, NY and the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) at CERN, facilities where collisions of heavy atomic nuclei create temperatures 300 thousand times hotter than the center of our sun.

As a visiting researcher at Brookhaven, and a participant in big science, Ágnes is keenly aware of the role science plays for progress in society. This drives her to seek new mediums with which to communicate science to varied audiences, ranging from congress men and women, theater goers, to inmates at Rikers. She is also engaged in changing the diversity landscape of the sciences. You can read more about Ágnes, The Fashionista Physicist, here and here.

As a STEAMplant faculty membere, Ágnes’s interests are in:

  • science as a muse, novel science inspired artistic expressions in varied media
  • connections between the arts, design and science, particularly physics & astronomy
  • fashion as a language to engage a new audience in science
  • documentary film as a medium to portray a more humanistic view of science

Mark Rosin 

markMark is a mathematician and physicist with interests in the intersection of science with performance, art, design and music.

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He believes science is a tool for empowerment that belongs to everyone.

Mark’s scientific research is specifically tied to applied math and plasma physics. Most recently he has worked on developing computer algorithm for designing alternative fusion energy reactors, and problems in fluid dynamics. Beyond his research, Mark is the co-founder and director of Guerrilla Science, an organization whose mission is to bring the world’s greatest discoveries out of cloistered laboratories and stuffy classrooms into the realm of playful celebration at music festivals, pop-up storefronts, raucous parties, and public spaces.

As a STEAMplant faculty member, Mark’s interests are in:

  • mathematics, physics and dynamical systems.
  • algorithms, statistics, and data
  • interactive theatre and live performances
  • visualizing sound

Christopher X Jon Jensen (Acting Chair of Math & Science)

Cchrishris is an educator, writer, and scientist with interests in cooperation, human cultural evolution, and sustainability.

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A passionate teacher with experience in both secondary and higher education, Chris is interested in scientific communication, both through traditional classroom approaches and work aimed at the general public. He has developed a large variety of classroom activities that facilitate active learning through collaboration, presentation, and visual representation. Working alongside designers, he has developed images and activities that enable students to probe the mechanisms by which cooperation evolves. He also explores the genesis of ecological and evolutionary theory through The WmD Project, a video blog series designed to engage non-traditional learners.

Trained as a modeler of ecological systems, Chris is fascinated by both the potential and limitations of over-simplified representations of nature. Through modeling natural systems — and understanding the various ways that others create such models — he seeks to better understand the underlying mechanisms that govern the biological world around us. He is particularly interested in models of animal social interaction, including human social interaction.

You can read about Chris’ past projects on his website, including the Easy-IPD and Sustainable Use of Fisheries classroom activities and the Evolutionary Games Infographic Project.

As a faculty member participating in the STEAMplant, he is interested in projects that:

  • explore the mechanisms by which cooperation in nature evolves;
  • treat culture as a heritable system that has co-evolved with our genetic system of inheritance;
  • produce emergent larger-scale patterns based on the interaction rules operating at smaller scales;
  • provide commentary on the influence of ecology and/or evolutionary biology on human thought;
  • consider how our relationship (or lack thereof) to the quantitative nature of ecosystems affects our ability to create sustainable societies;
  • examine the idea of ecosystem services and how our relationship to these services affects our ability to create sustainable societies; and/or
  • allow members of the general public to better appreciate the evolved and ecological facets of their lives.

Dan Wright (STEAMplant Director)

danDan does research on college affordability and the environmental sustainability of the built environment.

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His current research is in two separate areas. In one he is engaged in writing about the student loan crisis and navigating the costs of college. The other entails the use of building modeling and simulations to address questions on the environmental sustainability of the built environment in New York City.

As a STEAMplant faculty member, he is interested in creative collaborations that involve the:

  • physics of light, sound, and music
  • science of environmental sustainability
  • mathematical aspects of social justice issues
  • promotion of numeracy

Cindie Kehlet

photo_cindieCindie is a chemist trained in Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR) spectroscopy.

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She came to Pratt to combine her two passions namely chemistry and art. Pratt has given her the opportunity to develop a research program that focuses on the non-invasive investigation of artists’ materials with the specific focus on the application of unilateral NMR combined with multivariate analysis.

Cindie is a passionate educator who has developed several courses at the chemistry and art interface such as Chemistry of Pigments, Nature of Color, Chemistry of Modern Polymers, and Degradation of Art and Design Materials all using a guided inquiry approach. She has also been mentoring several graduate and undergraduate students in chemistry and art research projects.

In 2013 Cindie received a Pratt Innovation grant for the project “Preservation of Modern Art and Design” a topic that she believe needs more attention since especially plastics and acrylic paints, used in many modern and contemporary works of art are not designed to last forever.

As a STEAMplant faculty member, Cindie’s interests are:

  • preservation strategies for modern art and design
  • scientific study of the degradation of modern art and design materials
  • non-invasive investigation of modern art and design materials
  • development of public engaging activities involving chemistry and art

Damon Chaky

damonDamon is an environmental chemist and the coordinator of undergraduate General Education in Pratt’s School of Liberal Arts and Sciences.

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With collaborators at other institutions, he explores the sources, levels, transport, and degradation of chemical pollutants in the environment. His particular interest is contamination in urban environments– both present and past– using information from sediment cores.  In the NYC area, much of his focus is on the past history of local industry (e.g. local pigment manufacture), sanitation (e.g., pollutants distributed through stormwater, sewage treatment or emissions from landfills) and combustion (e.g., exhaust from vehicles and emissions from buildings).

Damon teaches in the Sustainable Environmental Systems graduate program and guest lectures in the anchor course of the undergraduate minor in Sustainability.  For both populations, he emphasizes the very real influence that design decisions and material choice can have on the environment.  In all of his classroom teaching, Damon focuses on the many ways that scientific understanding intersects with 21st century life.

Within STEAMplant, Damon is most interested in projects that connect to the exploration of the natural/chemical environment and/or explore clear communication of scientific ideas and methodologies, particularly in regard to environmental issues.

Eleonora Del Federico

Eleonora is a Professor of Chemistry at Pratt Institute.

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Eleonora joined Pratt in 1999 to develop a program for teaching and research in Chemistry for the Arts. At the time, there were no Chemistry courses at Pratt so she set up the labs and resources so that chemistry courses, tailored to Pratt students, could run. Since then she has developed several courses at the interface of Chemistry/Art/Art History such as “Chemistry of Artists’ Materials”, “Art Forensics”, “Chemistry of Ancient Egyptian Art” and “Pompeii and Herculaneum”. This last course involves a field trip to the cities of Vesuvius to study the materials, techniques and condition of Roman Wall Paintings. During her first sabbatical year, Eleonora received an Andrew W. Mellon Fellowshipin Conservation Science to perform research at the Department of Scientific Research of the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Additionally, Eleonora obtained grants from the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, the Camille and Henry Dreyfus Foundation, The Bristol Myers Squib Foundation, the Stockman Family Foundation and the Kress foundation to develop a Mobile Laboratory for the Scientific Study of Art. This portable Lab can be taken to archaeological sites and museums to analyze artworks non-invasively and in-situ. An example of such studies can be found hereEleonora presently directs Pratt’s research program at Herculaneum in the context of the Herculaneum Conservation Project and in collaboration with Prof. Cindie Kehlet, Their work was recently featured in National Geographic along with other major media outlets. Since she came to Pratt, Eleonora has directed over 20 students (graduate and undergraduates) in research projects at the interface of chemistry and art. Several of her students have gone to pursue careers in chemistry, art conservation and related fields. Eleonora holds a Ph.D in Biophysical Chemistry from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst and a Masters and BS in Analytical Chemistry from the University of Buenos Aires, Argentina.

Eleonora is interested in STEAMplant collaborations which involve:

  • Non-invasive, in-situ analysis of wall paintings by NMR, Macro XRF and  FTIR
  • Study of the materials, techniques and degradation mechanisms of wall paintings and mosaics
  • Virtual reconstructions of wall paintings
  • The study of the degradation mechanisms of Ultramarine pigments in various media
  • Virtual recreation of ancient Roman Wall Paintings
  • Non-invasive, in-situ  analysis of Archeological materials by NMR, Macro XRF and FTIR

Charles Rubenstein

Charles, a Professor of Engineering and Information Science at Pratt, is a bio-engineer and electronics engineer, author and information scientist.

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He teaches electronics to Pratt undergraduates who incorporate those concepts in their art, design, industrial design and architectural works. He teaches a summer session Electronics for Design class centered around embedded systems (e.g., the Arduino) where students learn how to code for sensor inputs that control speakers, motors, LEDs, and other output devices.

Dr. Rubenstein is an internationally known leader and lecturer of the IEEE – a professional electrotechnology society of over 410,000 members – where he served as a member of the Board of Directors (2010-2011) and continues to be a chair or organizer of student, technical and Women in Engineering conferences in the US and all over the world. He has received many major awards for his service to the IEEE and has served on the Educational Activities Board, Member and Geographic Activities Board, Publications Board, the IEEE United States Activities Board and the Technical Activities Board. He is an International Professional Registration Advisor, and Chair of the Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET) New England Network.

Dr. Rubenstein holds a Ph.D. in Bio-engineering from the Polytechnic University of New York and a Masters in Library and Information Science from Pratt Institute. He is an IET Fellow and Chartered Engineer and a Life Senior Member of the IEEE.

As a STEAMplant faculty member, Charles is interested in projects that:

  • intersect technology with performance, art and design
  • use electronics and embedded controllers to create interactive art and design projects
  • include interactive electronic systems in their design

Helio Takai (Interim Dean, School of Liberal Arts and Sciences)

Helio is an experimental physicist with a specialization in nuclear and particle physics.

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As an experimental physicist, he builds instruments for the detection of all types of particles and nuclear radiation, from sensors, to electronics, to computers for data processing and acquisition. He has participated in small and large experiments. The largest experiment he has participated in is the ATLAS experiment at CERN together with 3,000 other physicists from all around the globe. He has developed a cosmic ray experiment together with high school physics teachers. His interaction with high school science educators led to his involvement with education and mentorship programs. He held positions at Brookhaven National Laboratory and Stony Brook University. His favorite coffee time conversation focuses on science in general, education, science and society, social inequalities, and crazy but good ideas.

In STEAMplant he is interested in:

  • interactive art based on microcontrollers and credit card size computers.
  • sensors to see the invisible: heat and sound.
  • visualizing elementary particles.
  • affordable instrumentation to bring modern and contemporary physics to the classroom.
  • raspberry pi computer farms for numerically intensive applications
  • statistical methods for natural language processing
  • use of 3d printers and laser cutters in high school education

Carole received her PH.D. in mathematics from the Courant Institute at NYU. Her specialty was algebraic number theory, but since coming to Pratt she has focused on the intersection of mathematics and art.

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She teaches courses entitled “Math and the Imagination” and “Symmetry, Shape, and Space” in which she covers such topics as the following (any of which she would be interested in working on as a STEAMplant faculty member):

  • concept of paradoxes and controversies
  • infinities
  • modular arithmetic
  • primes, with application to RSA coding
  • fractals and chaos
  • topology
  • probability and statistics
  • geometric constructions
  • tessellations of the plane, including Escher and Penrose tilings
  • symmetry groups
  • Platonic and Archimedean solids
  • spirals
  • Fibonacci numbers
  • the golden mean
  • phyllotaxis
  • non-Euclidean geometry
  • conic sections

In addition she is working with Basem Aly on a course in game theory.

Other-Department Collaborators

Che-Wei Wang

Che-Wei Wang [pron. sey-wey] is an artist, designer & architect with expertise in computational and generative design, fabrication technologies, electronics, CNC machining, and metal manufacturing.

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The results range from architecture & sculpture to interactive installations & mobile apps. He is the winner of the 2003 SOM fellowship and the Young Alumni Achievement Award from Pratt Institute. Che-Wei has taught courses on design, time, creative computing, and inflatables, at various institutions. He is an alumnus of MIT Media Lab, ITP at NYU, and Pratt Institute.

Nick Battis 

Nick Battis, director of Exhibitions at Pratt Institute, has been involved in organizing and curating exhibitions for over 30 years. 

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He has coordinated numerous exhibitions of fine arts, architecture, and design in Pratt’s Manhattan and Brooklyn galleries. He has also had solo exhibitions of his paintings in New York, Chicago and Los Angeles. His vision for the Pratt Manhattan Gallery includes the themes of art and science, sustainability, and social responsibility.

Ellen Berkovich

Ellen Berkovitch is a journalist, documentarian, and poet.

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Over a multiply awarded 30-year career, she has worked as a newspaper reporter, magazine editor in chief, national visual arts critic and fashion writer, public radio news director, and entrepreneur who founded and ran the Rocky Mountain West’s first daily online arts magazine from 2009 to 2016. She returned from two decades in New Mexico to her hometown of New York City in 2018 and began teaching at Pratt in January 2020. Ellen is at work on two new podcasts and a book-length series of essays entitled Improvising Diaspora. She has recently volunteered for the racial data tracker of the covid tracking project, and published articles about food security in Native America and complexity science efforts to teach algorithms how to read.

Andrew Freiband

Andrew Freiband is an artist, film producer, educator, and research-artist.

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He is the founder and director of the Artists’ Literacies Institute, an experiment in arts education and engagement that helps artists reframe their artistic practice as research, and then connects them to new possibilities for intervening meaningfully in social, ecological, political, civic, and economic systems. As a critique of the instrumentalization of artists as only communicators or servants of the marketplace, the ALI discovers new, more meaningful roles for artists in their society and communities.

He holds more than two decades of extensive field experience at the many intersections of art, education, media, film, journalism, literature, social impact, international development, research, and strategic design.

Gabrielle Brainard

Gabrielle is an architect and educator focused on the design and performance of building enclosures.

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Gabrielle’s professional background is as a facade consultant at Heintges and senior technical architect at SHoP, where her projects included the design and execution of custom facades for 111 West 57th Street and Pier 17 at South Street Seaport.

Her interest in envelope performance has led to research on thermal comfort that uses sensor networks and occupant surveys to understand and communicate how buildings actually work – and how they make people feel.

As a STEAMplant faculty member, Gabrielle is interested in:

  • Thermal comfort and human-centered design
  • Measuring buildings
  • Spatial analytics
  • Design and performance of enclosure systems
  • Building science pedagogy
  • Science literacy and active learning

Cristobal Correa

Cristobal is an engineer and educator who is interested in the technology and construction process of building as well as the holistic design process which incorporates all building systems into one cohesive project!

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Cristobal has a varied and long career as a structural designer of traditional buildings as well as temporary structures, stadiums, glass, complex geometries, façade systems, tensile structures and infrastructure planning. He has primarily been active in the cultural and educational sector and has built projects around the world. In 2012 Cristobal became the Technology Coordinator at the Pratt Graduate School of Architecture and Urban Design (GAUD) responsible for the Core Technology classes that are part of the curriculum.

As an educator he has taught Structures 1 and 2, History of Structural Design and also coordinated and participated in the Integrated Building Studio which is a hallmark of the integrated design process taught at Pratt GAUD.

As a STEAMplant faculty member, Cristobal is interested in:

  • Technology and its understanding as a driver to intelligent and cool design
  • Demystifying science and data for everyone
  • Exploring the best way to communicate building science with designers and users
  • Building science pedagogy
  • Cross discipline working at Pratt!

Joseph Morris

Joe is a transdisciplinary artist, educator, and rapid prototyping professional based in Brooklyn.

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He is a 2017 New York State Council on the Arts, Electronic Media grantee, in 2015 he was a Harvestworks New Works Resident, and recipient of Pratt Institute’s Faculty Development Grant. Morris holds an MFA in Art and Technology Studies from The School of The Art Institute of Chicago, and BFA in Sculpture from SUNY Purchase College. He is currently a visiting professor and rapid prototyping technician at Pratt Institute, Industrial Design, teaching classes in physical computing, prototyping, digital fabrication processes (laser cutting, 3D printing, and CNC milling), and assists students in the deployment of technology in their prototypes. He is an expert craftsman and coder who believes in the possibilities enabled through the integration of technology in the arts. Joseph’s Interests are:

  • Art, technology, and experimental media, including new systems for creative output
  • Experimental tools for CNC robotics and digital fabrication.
  • Integrating technology to create responsive objects and environments
  • Material and object empathy
  • Physical Computing
  • Mechanics

Ariel Goldberg

Ariel is an Adjunct Assistant Professor at Pratt Institute in the Humanities and Media Studies Department.

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In 2016, Nightboat Books published The Estrangement Principle, a book of poetic essays on labeling art queer. In 2015, Roof Books published The Photographer, a book of poetry that examines the language of photographing in relation to self-representation and resistance to state violence. Their research and teaching materials engage the overlaps between photography as art, politics, and technology, on the one hand, and the intersections of queer, lesbian, and African-American literature on the other. At Pratt, they teach courses such as Photography & American Literature and Writing as Photography. Goldberg’s work has been supported by the New York Public Library, the Franklin Furnace Fund, SOMA in Mexico City, and Smith College. From 2014-2017, they organized readings at The Poetry Project. They are working on their next book, Heavy Equipment: Prophetic Gestures in Photography’s Recent Past.

As a participant in the STEAMplant, Ariel is interested in:

  • How photographic technologies change over time
  • Corollaries between early modes of photographic distribution to current use of photos on social media
  • LGBTQ self-representation in histories of photography

Basem Aly

Basem is a senior developer in the IT department, and an instructor in the School of Art at Pratt Institute.

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He taught videogame design to high school students as part of the K-12 Center’s Saturday Art School program. Basem Aly has over 20 years’ experience in technical-related fields at national and international organizations. He arrived at Pratt with solid experience managing multi-tiered technical projects with limited resources and is well-versed in interactive production tools such as Unity 3D, HTML5 / Javascript, WordPress, and related programming technologies.

With a working knowledge of PHP, Python, and Javascript and a master’s degree in media studies from New School University, Aly is also an avid gamer and tinkerer of board games, role-playing games, and workplace incentive systems (‘gamification’). A very effective communicator who is able to absorb and translate technical information for non-specialist audiences, Aly is an experienced Dungeon Master, with exceptional interactive story-telling, worldbuilding, and improvisational skills.

Aly has worked on the web since 1995, when he believed HTML was passing fad. Since then he’s worked for the Near East Foundation, the McCann-Erickson advertising agency, Reverend Billy’s Church of Stop Shopping (as penance for the ad agency gig), The Welfare Poets hip-hop group, The Whitney Museum of American History, and now at Pratt Institute as the Senior Web Developer and co-designer of a multi-disciplinary game-design program.

Aly has produced several interactive works and games during his career, including work for the Whitney Museum, educational games for the iPhone and Android platforms, and web-based interactive features. Currently he’s working on a historical board game set during the American revolution, a video game where players control powerful artifacts, and researching alongside a senior analyst for the NYPD a game the deters violent radicalization. He is also assisting Cuban designers on a video game called Savior.

Lisa A. Banner

Lisa is Adjunct Associate Professor, History of Art and Design, at Pratt Institute.

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As a private curator, she has organized exhibitions like “The President’s Face,” highlighting loans of rare and privately owned photographs, documents and paintings at the Ulysses S. Grant Presidential Library. An expert on old master drawings, she has also lectured at The Courtauld Institute, The Frick Collection, Metropolitan Museum of Art, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, Meadows Museum, and elsewhere. In 2014, she curated a contemporary installation at Prospect 3+ Biennial, New Orleans. Since 2013 she has curated a series of contemporary exhibitions at the Institute of Fine Arts, NYU. In 2017, she has curated several major exhibitions including Frammenti at the Italian Embassy, in Washington, D.C.; SHIFT: Jongil Ma, Christopher Smith, Corban Walker at David Owsley Museum of Art. Banner is also a board member of The Hammond Museum and Japanese Stroll Garden, and advisory member of several curatorial committees, including the Scholars Program Advisory Committee at the Frick Art Reference Library. With Cindie Kehlet, and Sarah Nunberg, she is a co-director of the Licio Isolani Study Archive at Pratt Institute.

Aileen Wilson

Aileen is Professor in Art and Design Education, and Director of the Center for Art, Design, and Community Engagement K-12.

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She earned a B.A. (Hons) 1st class Printmaking/Painting, Gray’s School of Art, Aberdeen, Scotland, an M.A. in Printmaking, Chelsea School of Art, London, UK, an Ed.D in Art/Art Education, Teacher’s College, Columbia University, New York City.

The Center K-12 coordinates programs and initiatives that leverage the resources and expertise of the Institute to support school-age children, city-wide public schools, and youth-serving organizations. The Center K-12 mission is to foster learning and discovery across studios focused on art and design (ADE) in programs like the Saturday Art School, and Pratt Young Scholars, and on science, engineering, art, and design (SEAD) in programs like Rising Architects and Designers. Under her leadership the Center K-12 has received funding from the Con Edison Company of New York, Inc., the New York State Council on the Arts, The Pinkerton Foundation, Selz Foundation, Turrell Fund, The Hearst Foundation, the National Endowment for the Arts, and The Edward and Sally Van Lier Fund of The New York Community Trust.

Additionally, she collaborated on a 2014 Pratt Institute Innovation Fund Award for STEM for Designers: Teaching Digital  Technologies in a Creative Context in collaboration with Professor Duks Koschitz, and a 2014 RiDE Series Grant for project Public Information Public Education Public Space, with the Graduate School of Architecture and Urban Design. She also participated on a 2015 presentation titled CODE as Form / FORM as Code on the panel Machine Crafted, with Professors Duks Koschitz, and Cindie Kehlet at the AICAD Symposium – Exploring Science in the Studio at the California College of the Arts in San Francisco, 2015.

Frank Millero

Frank is a designer, educator and consultant interested in the intersection of science, art, design and culture.

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Frank has an undergraduate degree in Molecular Cell Biology from UC Berkeley and a Master of Industrial Design from Pratt. Frank spent 10 years as an exhibit developer and staff scientist at the Exploratorium museum in San Francisco and the last 10+ years working as a product designer and professor. He is on the board of directors for the non-profit retailer Serrv, whose mission is to eradicate poverty through fair trade. He has taught a variety of courses in Pratt’s Industrial Design department related to sustainable design and life cycle analysis.

As a faculty member participating in the STEAMplant, Frank is interested in:

  • multidisciplinary collaboration
  • materials and production methods
  • life cycle approach
  • biological systems & biomimicry
  • international development & fair trade
  • cultural preservation and re-invented traditions
  • experiential learning

Jaime Stein

Jaime is an Academic, Sustainability Consultant and Urban Researcher who advocates for sustainable development through community engagement, sustainability planning and policy analysis.

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Currently, Ms Stein directs the Sustainable Environmental Systems program at Pratt Institute’s Graduate School of Architecture, a master of science in sustainability studies with a curriculum at the nexus of environmental design, science and policy. Her academic research focuses on systems thinking integrated with community self-determination, green infrastructure and community based resilience. She is Co-Director of Pratt Institute’s Recovery, Adaptation Mitigation & Planning (RAMP) climate change adaptation initiative, is a founding member and Steering Committee Chair of the Stormwater Infrastructure Matters (S.W.I.M.) Coalition as well as the Collective for Community, Culture & the Environment. Jaime works closely with the NYC Department of Environmental Protection on a variety of community engagement projects and serves on their Water Infrastructure Steering Committee. Ms Stein is also the Mayoral Appointee for the Atlantic Yards Community Development Corporation, a subsidiary of the Empire State Development Corporation, charged in mitigating quality of life issues for the community surrounding the Atlantic Yards development.

Professor Stein’s research includes:

Caitlin Cahill

Caitlin is an Associate Professor, Urban Geography & Politics and co-coordinator of the Social Justice/Social Practice Minor.

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A community-based urban & youth studies scholar, for over fifteen years Caitlin has conducted critical participatory action research projects with young people in cities investigating the everyday intimate experiences of neoliberal restructuring, specifically as it concerns gentrification, immigration, education, and zero tolerance policing policies.

Over the last four years Caitlin has participated on an interdisciplinary team of scholars, organizers, and young people to address discriminatory policing in New York City in a participatory research project: Researchers for Fair Policing. Our research documents the human cost of the New York Police Department’s (NYPD) long history of Broken Windows policing policies, and offers key considerations for reframing what we mean by “community safety.” We have collected surveys from over 1,000 young people that offer new relevant findings about the everyday experience of growing up black and brown with Broken Windows policing. What’s more, we have created an archive of young people’s testimonials of their encounters with the police, a documentary short video, public exhibitions, and an interactive website and social media campaign that is currently in progress. As part of this inquiry, my collaborator, statistician and Social Psychologist Brett Stoudt created a Geography of Stop & Frisk as part of this project, which maps over time the number of police stops across New York City, which not coincidentally as the same neighborhoods that are currently gentrifying.

Currently Caitlin collaborates with the Bushwick Action Research Collective and the Public Science Project in New York City. In Salt Lake City, Utah Caitlin co-founded the Mestizo Arts & Activism Collective (with Matt Bradley & David Quijada), an intergenerational social justice think tank that informed by the wisdom of young people’s everyday experiences.

As a faculty member participating in the STEAMplant, Caitlin is interested in:

  • interdisciplinary justice-oriented community-based and defined research
  • collaborations focused on issues of racial justice, gentrification, abolition and/or immigration
  • collaborating with artists/designers/activists and community members who share commitments to collaborative creative process, justice, public engagement, and community well-being

Duks Koschitz

Duks joined the faculty at Pratt Institute in 2013 and focuses on integrating technology in the undergraduate curriculum that supports students in developing their design skills.

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Duks is the Director of the Design Lab at Pratt, a research initiative that supports faculty members, who are interested in pursuing research projects.

His PhD in the Design & Computation Group at M.I.T., “Computational Design with Curved Creases: David Huffman’s Approach to Paperfolding,” elucidates ways of designing with curved creases, specifically related to the work of computer scientist David A. Huffman. His academic research in creative learning lead to the development of “Beetle Blocks” with Eric Rosenbaum, a software to teach algorithmic thinking to generate forms. His research on form active shapes is inspired by the work of structural engineer Heinz Isler. Duks has held several research positions and has evaluated and documented all of Isler’s models for the Heinz Isler Archiv at the ETH in Zurich in 2011. Duks graduated from the Technical University in Vienna in 1998.

Duks recently started his own design practice and has participated in several competitions. He co-founded sparc, a design and research collaborative in 2007 with three colleagues at MIT. The practice has won the 1st prize of “London 2008” an ideas competition for the river Thames Gallery and the 1st prize of the “Gillette Sculpture Competition” in Boston in 2010. From 2000 to 2007 Duks was the lead designer at NMDA for all of the office’s built projects. The co-authored projects have won national and local AIA awards and the last project Duks was in charge of, HL23 in NY, was also exhibited at MOCA in Los Angeles in 2007. In 1999 Duks worked with Nader Tehrani and Monica Ponce de Leon and was the project architect for Mantra in Boston. Prior to working at Office da he worked at Morphosis, Eric O. Moss, Asymptote, Coop Himmelblau, and Ian Ritchie Architects.

HyukJae is a designer, an educator, and a researcher.

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He has been a professor of Industrial Design at Pratt Institute for over two decades, carrying out research, teaching, and professional practice. During the last five years, he has served as the interim director of the Pratt DAHRC (Digital Arts and Humanities Research Center). Through his studio practice and an array of research groups and labs he directed, he has completed projects, initiatives, and product developments with BMW, Boeing, Chrysler, Blythedale Children’s Hospital, Cornell Medical College, PepsiCo, Proctor & Gamble, General Mills, Gucci, Herman Miller, McNeil Associates, MET, New York Historical Society Museum, Philip-Morris, Red Bull, Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines, Samsung, Timex, TED, Verizon, Victoria’s Secret, Warner Brothers, and YSL. By making deep investments and mastering the key fundamental principles and essential set of knowledge early on to wield and teach the technologies which are relevant, significant, and emerging across the world, Yoo has been able to develop and build a unique body and practice of professional & educational methodologies. He has played key roles over the years in bringing to the Pratt community crucial technologies and initiatives, some of which includes 3D CAD, 3D printing, 3D scanning, Motion Capture, Digital Draping, and Virtual & Augmented Reality. He speaks, writes, and advises on design, humanity, and technology for corporations, museums, cultural organizations, educational institutions and policy makers around the world. His latest favorite multi-disciplinary initiative is Better Music through Design.

Sarah Nunberg

Sarah is a fine art objects conservator in private practice with a studio in New York City.

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She is currently a Stockman Family Foundation Fellow at Pratt Institute working in the Math and Science department, researching and teaching conservation strategies and degradation of art various materials. Ms. Nunberg is leading the preservation of the recently established Licio Isolani Study Archive a collection of works of art by former Pratt professor Licio Isolani. Ms. Nunberg works closely with students and faculty to facilitate proper housing for the collection, and works with students to complete triage treatments such as initial cleaning and basic structural repairs.

Ms. Nunberg also has expertise in treatment of archaeological objects, Pre Columbian ceramics, and contemporary art. Currently, she is overseeing a large scale treatment of a Louise Nevelson installation. She is also the co-chair of an NEH grant that works towards building a library of life cycle assessments that will aid conservators, and collections managers in choosing the most sustainable practices possible.  Ms. Nunberg received an M.A. in archaeology at Yale University where she focused on pre-Columbian ceramics and art history. She continued to study materials, production methods and preservation at New York University, Institute of Fine Arts where she achieved an M.A. in art history and an Advanced Certificate in Conservation of Works of Art (1997). Ms. Nunberg has worked extensively on public and private collections and served as chair of the American Institute for Conservation of Historic and Artistic Works Sustainability Committee.