Support for Housing-Focused Studios at the Graduate School of Design

The Joint Center for Housing Studies is offering financial support for Graduate School of Design (GSD) studios that focus on housing-related economic, social, or environmental challenges. Faculty from any GSD department or program can submit proposals for studios they are teaching in Fall 2023 or Spring 2024. Applications, which must be submitted via CARAT, are due by 5 pm on Wednesday, March 22, 2023 (the week after Spring Recess). Funding decisions, which will be announced in April, will be made as part of the overall studio approval process, which involves the dean, department heads, and other senior faculty members appointed by the dean.

What Types of Housing Challenges Can the Studios Explore?

The Center seeks to fund studios that focus on areas where design can help address housing-related challenges. For AY 2023-2024, the Center is especially interested in studios that focus on housing affordability, particularly those focused on public or social housing. In addition, the Center is interested in proposals that relate to other economic, environmental, social, or demographic challenges, especially those associated with the Center’s core research areas. These might include studios focused on such as topics as reducing the carbon footprint of new and/or existing housing; facilitating aging in place; furthering the adaptive reuse of existing structures; or new forms of living that have emerged in response to both the increasing cost of housing and changing preferences for living arrangements.

How Much Funding is Available?

The Center will make up to $50,000 available annually to support one or more housing-focused studios. The Center also will consider multi-year proposals for a series of studios focused on a broad theme. In addition, the Center can provide partial funding for studios that need more than $50,000 or studios that can secure partial funding from other sources.

What Can the Funding Be Used For?

Consistent with GSD’s policies for studios, the funds can be used to cover travel and lodging for enrolled students in the studio and the faculty member (or faculty members). Funds can also be used to support studio-related research done by a student Research Assistant and towards the preparation of a studio report.

Where Can I Get More Information?

If you have questions, please contact David Luberoff, the Center’s Deputy Director. If you have specific questions about preparing a budget for a studio, please contact Pilar Raynor Jordan in the Academic Affairs Business Office.

How Can Faculty Apply for the Funding?

Applications must be submitted via CARAT, Harvard’s online system for grants and fellowships. Applications must include a detailed description of plans for the studio, including the theme to be investigated, the site for the studio, and the programs that students will be drawn from. The proposal must also include short biographies of the studio instructor(s), a list of other studios taught by the instructor(s), and a detailed budget that uses this budget template. (If you have questions about the budget, please contact Pilar Raynor Jordan in the Academic Affairs Business Office.)

When Are Applications Due?

The 2023 deadline for applications has passed.

What Criteria Will Be Used to Review Applications?

The following criteria will be used:

  • Topic: Does the studio focus on permanently affordable housing or another significant housing-related environmental, social, financial, or demographic challenge?
  • Quality: Does the proposal seem realistic, coherent, and potentially significant? Will students be able to connect with individuals or organizations familiar with and active in the proposed site? Are students likely to produce the high-quality work products envisioned in the proposal?
  • Collaboration: Does the studio seem likely attract students from multiple departments and programs? Does it involve (or have the potential to involve) faculty from various departments and programs?
  • Funding: Is the funding request prudent and reasonable? Is it adequate to cover likely costs? Is the studio’s likely value commensurate with those costs?

How Will Funding Decisions Be Made?

Members of the Center’s Faculty Advisory Committee will review applications and make funding recommendations to the dean. FAC members who submit a studio proposal must recuse themselves from the review process. If necessary, they will be replaced by another faculty member from their department.

The final decision will be made as part of the overall studio approval process, which involves the dean, department heads, and other senior faculty members appointed by the dean.

When Will the Funding Decision Be Announced?

We will announce the funding decision by mid-April.