News & Press: ACSP Annual Conference News

ACSP Student Paper Awards

Wednesday, October 26, 2016  
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Student awards are presented at the Plenary Assembly, Thursday, November 3, 4:15pm. Winners are asked to present their papers at the Student Award Paper Session scheduled this year for Saturday, November 5, 8:00am – 9:30am. ACSP awards the following prizes for papers prepared as part of research projects and academic studies.

 

ACSP Ed McClure Award for the Best Masters Student Paper

POST-ISLAND FUTURES: Seeding Territory for Tuvalu’s Fluid Atolls.
Elizabeth Reed Yarina, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

The Ed McClure Award recognizes superior scholarship in a paper prepared by a masters student in an ACSP-member school. Submissions may address any topic of investigation generated in the course of pursuing a master’s degree in urban/city/community/town/regional planning. 

The Edward McClure Award winning entry this year considers an interesting topic in a thoughtful and pragmatic manner. The situation of international refugees in Nauru involves many issues important to planning, including poverty; migration, displacement, and social vulnerability; international relations; the built environment, environmental degradation; and the impacts of climate change. (We might note that Nauru has since received more attention from major media outlets, such as National Public Radio.) Yarina’s clear writing and careful approach, emphasizing spatial and architectural perspectives, capably support her evaluation of extensive empirical information to generate insights with the potential to guide local action.

Lizzie Yarina recently completed a joint Masters of Architecture and Masters of City Planning at MIT, with her thesis entitled “POST-ISLAND FUTURES: Seeding Territory for Tuvalu’s Fluid Atolls.” She also holds a Bachelor of Science in Architecture from the University of Michigan, and was raised in Michigan's Upper Peninsula. Lizzie's research explores the role of design thinking in political and territorial issues, with a particular focus on climate change and natural resources. She is also a design researcher in the MIT Urban Risk Lab. During the 2016-17 year, Lizzie will serve as an MIT-SUTD teaching and research fellow, and she will begin a Fulbright research fellowship in New Zealand in the spring of 2017 on the spatial implications of climate change migration on New Zealand cities.

The 2016 Ed McClure Award Committee includes: Committee Chair Josh Drucker, University of Illinois at Chicago; Bryce Lowery, University of Oklahoma; and Chris Tilly, University of California, Los Angeles.

 

FWIG/ACSP Marsha Ritzdorf Award for the Best Student Work on Diversity, Social Justice and the Role of Women in Planning

Equity in the Time of Precarity: Inclusive Local Economy Projects in Toronto’s Neighbourhood Improvement Areas
Mercedes Sharpe Zayas, University of Toronto

This award is named after Marsha Ritzdorf, who was a stalwart champion of social justice and did path-breaking research on the relationship between zoning regulation and the suppression of women and non-traditional families. This award recognizes superior scholarship reflecting concern with making communities better for women, people of color and/or the disadvantaged. Submissions may be based on student work submitted in the pursuit of any urban/city/community/town/regional planning degree, undergraduate or graduate, at an ACSP-member school.

A committee of five faculty members from the Faculty Women’s Interest Group (FWIG) selected Mercedes Sharpe-Zayas from a competitive field of candidates, in recognition of the critical questions, thoughtful analysis, and compelling presentation of arguments and suggestions that she made in her thesis, titled "Equity in the Time of Precarity: Inclusive Local Economy Projects in Toronto’s Neighbourhood Improvement Areas."

The 2016 Marsha Ritzdorf Award Committee includes: Committee Chair Kathryn Quick, University of Minnesota; Kristen Crossney, West Chester University; Orly Linovski, University of Manitoba; Lynn McCormick, Hunter College; Rosie Tighe, Cleveland State University; Yiping Fang, Portland State University.

 

ACSP/MIT Don Schön Award for Excellence in Learning from Practice

The Donald A. Schön Award for Reflective Practice is given to two students this year: Lillian Jacobson, of MIT, and Madeleine Koch, of the University of Manitoba. The committee congratulates both Lillian and Madeleine for their well-written, thoughtful and inspiring work. It shows how much can be achieved when planning students set out to empower communities and to learn from practice.

The Committee selected two winners for 2016.

Drawing Outside the Lines: Participatory Design in Unincorporated Communities
Lillian Jacobson, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Lillian Jacobson submitted her Master’s thesis in 2015 (a year in which no award was given), under the supervision of Jota Samper. The thesis is entitled, “Drawing Outside the Lines: Participatory Design in Unincorporated Communities.” It chronicles and analyses Lillian’s collaboration with high-school students from a marginalized community in Santa Rose, California. In a note to the committee after being notified of her award, Lillian wrote that her work with young people had “expanded [her] understanding of true community-based design . . . and taught [her] the power young voices can have in planning the future of our cities.” Her thesis documents her successful attempts to elicit reflection-in-action and reflection-on-action among high-school students and shows her own reflection on that experience.

Manitoba Relationship Stories: When First Nations and Local Governments Plan Together
Madeleine Koch, University of Manitoba

Madeleine Koch wrote her master’s thesis in 2016, under the supervision of Janice Barry. Entitled “Manitoba Relationship Stories: When First Nations and Local Governments Plan Together,“ the thesis follows Don Schön’s lead in studying the lived experience of practitioners and in bringing them to reflect on their practice. As Madeline wrote to the award committee, “intergovernmental planning [between First Nations and municipal or regional agencies] can be highly political and complex”; inducing practitioners, including members of First Nations, to tell “practice stories” from the field helps them, and helps the researcher, understand the challenges they face and the strategies they can adopt to meet those challenges.

The 2016 Donald A. Schön Award Committee includes: Committee Chair Raphaël Fischler, McGill University; Robert Goodspeed, University of Michigan; Langley Keyes, Massachusetts Institute of Technology; Sarah Kuhn, University of Massachusetts; Jonathan Richmond, independent scholar; and Elizabeth Schön Vanier.

 

ACSP/Cornell University Barclay Gibbs Jones Award for the Best Dissertation in Planning

Leveraging Organizational Dynamics in Buildings to Change Behavior
Elizabeth Hewitt, Stony Brook University

This award recognizes superior scholarship in a doctoral dissertation completed by a student enrolled in an ACSP-member school. The committee seeks a thesis that is original, well written, employs methods elegantly, offers lessons pertinent to central issues in the field of planning, and provides guidance about how planners or governments should make choices. This award is generously funded on an annual basis by Cornell University.
The committee was especially impressed by Elizabeth’s novel organizational approach to understanding the energy efficiency of buildings, her adoption of a wide range of methods, and use of an instructive new data source. Her research has the potential to significantly shape the field of environmental planning.

The 2016 Barclay Gibbs Jones Award Committee includes: Committee Chair Rachel Weber, University of Illinois at Chicago; Gwen Urey, California State Polytechnic University, Pomona; Charles Jennings, John Jay College; and Doug Lee, independent scholar.

 

IACP/ACSP Karen Polenske Best Student Paper Award for Outstanding Paper on a China Related Topic

Spatial Distribution of Urban Territories at a Regional Scale: Modelling the Changjiang Delta’s Urban Network
Chenghe Guan, Harvard University

This award was established in honor of Massachusetts Institute of Technology Professor Karen R. Polenske - a prominent regional economist and a leading scholar of China's sustainable development. It is awarded annually to International Association for China Planning (IACP) student member who presents excellent research at major international planning conferences. This award is generously funded by the IACP and is currently presented at their annual conference in China, and at their annual membership meeting in the United States during the ACSP Annual Conference.

ChengHe Guan’s paper is written in a concise way to demonstrate a critical research question and its potential for further developed to be published in a top ranking journal. Yangtze River Delta Area is a good choice and focus for exploring key issues of urban expansion at the regional level concerning aspects such as land resource, developing corridors, ecological systems, different sizes of cities, etc. While some aspects need more justification and clarification such as the selection of scenarios and factors, this paper is an excellent model paper that, apart from description of methodologies and technical exercises, the most valuable contribution is to answer key research question and elaborate key arguments through synthesizing modeling findings and critically discussing possible policy implications.

The 2016 Karen Polenske Award Committee includes: Committee Chair Jason Cao, University of Minnesota; Mengke Chen, World Bank; Shenjing He, University of Hong Kong; and Yiming Wang, University College London.

 

GPEIG Gill-Chin Lim Award for the Best Dissertation on International Planning

The Crude Urban Revolution: Land Markets, Planning Forms and the Making of New Luanda
Ricardo Cardoso, University of California, Berkeley

The ACSP Global Planners Educators Interest Group (GPEIG) recognizes superior scholarship in a doctoral dissertation completed by a student enrolled in an ACSP-member school. This grant is provided by the generous funding of Dr. Hyun-Chin Lim, a young brother of Dr. Gill-Chin Lim at Seoul National University and the Consortium on Development Studies (CODS) established by the late Dr. Gill-Chin Lim in 1982.

Ricardo Cardoso‘s work exhibits innovative, challenging, creative and poetic scholarship on the complex relations between crude oil resources, international oil deals, urban planning institutions, land and real estate markets and the emergence of new forms of urbanism in Luanda, Angola. The award committee received many excellent dissertations this year. It was a difficult choice. The committee was particularly impressed by the depth of his ethnographic fieldwork and archival research, by the complexity of his institutional analysis, by his theoretical and ethical insights, by his innovative scholarship and creativity, and by the quality of his writing.

In this dissertation, Ricardo explores the relations between crude oil resources, urban planning institutions and city form in Luanda, Angola. The impacts of international trade on urban development are crucial in the Global South, yet they remain under-researched. Ricardo’s work provides a very rich account of neo-liberalization processes that goes far beyond, and challenges, arguments on the curse of resource-rich-yet-poor nations in post-colonial settings.

The 2016 Gill-Chin Lim Dissertation Award Committee includes: Committee Chair Lucie Laurian, University of Iowa; Ruth Yabes, University of Florida; Emel Ganapati, Florida International University.

 

ACSP Scholarships for Student Travel

These scholarships provide financial support to students to attend the ACSP Conference, including student full conference registration waiver and a cash award to defray travel expenses. Applicants must be enrolled graduate students at an ACSP member school during the most recent academic year.

Applicants must also be: 1) nearing completion of the doctoral degree, 2) presenting an accepted paper at the conference, and 3) for whom conference attendance would otherwise not be possible.

  • Eric Seymour, University of Michigan
  • Adele Cassola, Columbia University
  • Santina Contreras, University of California, Irvine
  • Fei Li, New York University
  • Kim Mosby, University of New Orleans
  • Subhashni Raj, University at Buffalo

The 2016 ACSP Student Travel Award Committee includes: Committee Chair Nabil Kamel, Western Washington University; and Kate Lowe, University of New Orleans.

 

ACSP/ Publisher’s Student Travel Scholarship

Generous publishers have become accustomed to leaving books behind from their Book Fair participation at ACSP Conferences. This has enabled the ACSP to use them as a fundraiser selling them for ½ the retail price on Sunday morning of the conference. Since 2005 all sale proceeds have gone toward travel scholarships for first-time student presenters at the next year’s conference. Winners must have an abstract accepted for presentation at the upcoming annual conference and must be attending to present a paper at the ACSP Conference for the first-time.

  • Julia Triman, University of Virginia
  • Jueyu Wang, University of Minnesota
  • Stephen Diko, University of Cincinnati
  • Jung Ho Park, University of Southern California

 

ACSP/POCIG Scholarship for Student Travel

The goal of these travel awards is to make students of color aware of the importance of planning education/research and why more planning faculty of color are needed. These scholarships provide financial support to students to attend the ACSP Conference including student full conference registration waiver and a cash award to defray travel expenses.

  • C. Aujean Lee, University of California, Los Angeles
  • Kim Mosby, University of New Orleans
  • Devin Oliver, University of Texas, Austin

The 2016 POCIG Student Travel Award Committee includes: Committee Chair Sigmund Shipp, Hunter College CUNY.

 

GPEIG Gill-Chin Lim Scholarship for Student Travel

Only graduate planning students enrolled at an ACSP member school during the 2014-2015 year; presenting papers at the conference with a focus on an international development/global planning topic, with a special focus on low-income countries of the global south, and traveling more than 100 miles are eligible to apply. These scholarships provide financial support to students to attend the ACSP Conference including student full conference registration waiver and a cash award to defray travel expenses.

  • Angela Oberg, Rutgers University
  • Asavari Devadiga, University of California, Berkeley

The 2016 GPEIG Student Travel Award Committee includes: Committee Chair Divya Chandrasekhar, University of Utah; Enrique Silva, Lincoln Institute of Land Policy; and Abhinav Alakshendra, University of Florida.


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The Association of Collegiate Schools of Planning promotes education, research, service and outreach in the United States and throughout the world by seeking to:

  • recognize diverse needs and interests in planning;
  • improve and enhance the accreditation process, and;
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  • extend planning beyond the classroom into the world of practice.

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