COA Research Forum: Dr. Perry Yang, "Ecological Urbanism: Scale, Flow and Design"

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Summary Sentence: The College of Architecture Research Forum welcomes Associate Professor Perry Yang

Full Summary: Dr. Perry Yang presents research as part of the COA Research Forum

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  • Ecological Urbanism: Scale, Flow and Design Ecological Urbanism: Scale, Flow and Design
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As part of the fall COA Research Forum series, Perry Yang will talk about his recent book Ecological Urbanism: Scale, Flow and Design. He also will discuss recent work including Georgia Tech Foundation research project to develop solar mapping tools for urban design.

Sustainable and ecological discourses of urban design and planning are overwhelming in recent literatures, however, focusing mostly on normative criteria or policy oriented tools. Operational approaches to connecting ecological analysis and urban design are largely unexplored. The book argues for the third ecology proposition, a perspective that cities as a system contains ecological flows. Its approach to urban design articulates urban form and ecological flows to create symbiotic relationship of urban, industrial and natural systems. The distinction between traditional urban design and ecological systems design has been made. Traditional designs tend to be deterministic in form making, while ecosystem approaches to urban design deal with ecological processes that are stochastic. Traditional urban design treats “ecology in cities” as ways of preserving or adding ecological elements such as green spaces to urban environment. Ecological systems design advocates “ecology by design”, an inherently ecology-structured urban system, and sees ecology as a driving force of urban transformation to reconstruct ecosystems compatibility by linking the urban forms and flows of material, energy, water and organism across the system boundaries. The design methodology of ecological urbanism provides a set of organizational principles of ecological urban spaces that are operated based on the measures of ecological performances of urban geometric form, perceptual quality and material surface. They are situated in cross-scale contexts of hierarchical complex systems of cities, and should be considered in temporal dimension, system threshold and stochastic process to manage urban change and make sustainable progress.


Perry Yang is an Associate Professor of City and Regional Planning and Architecture at College of Architecture of Georgia Tech. Perry’s research, teaching and practice focus on Ecologically Sustainable Design in Urban Settings. Since 2001, he has published extensively in this particular area including refereed journal articles, conference papers, book chapters, reviews and design works. His research in Georgia Tech is organized around the idea of Eco Systems Design Simulation Lab, coupled with the concept of urban design teaching and practice Eco Systems Design Studio. He has been awarded prizes in urban design competitions continuously. The recent awards include the 1st prizes in international competition of the 2009 World Games Park at Kaohsiung City of Taiwan in 2005, the Eco-city design at Maluan Bay in one of China's most important port cities Xiamen in 2007 and the Green Heart design at Shunde, Guangdong, the Pearl River Delta Region of China in 2010. His urban design work was recently featured in one of China’s leading architecture magazines WA (World Architecture) under special issue Ecological Urbanism in January 2010. His new book Ecological Urbanism: Scale, Complexity and Design was recently published by China Architecture and Building Press in 2010. He is on the editorial boards of two academic journals, Progress in Industrial Ecology and Modern Urban Research. In January 2007, he was appointed the board member of the International Urban Planning and Environment Association (UPE), and co-chaired the organizing committee of UPE9 in Guangzhou China in August 2010.

See Yang's full profile.

About the COA Research Forum

The COA Research Forum provides an informal setting for the Georgia Tech community to learn about research within the College of Architecture. Forums are free and open to the public and participants are invited to explore ideas and identify opportunities for collaboration.  All talks are held in the Architecture Library from 11 a.m. to noon on the last Thursday of August through April. Talks are 30-to-45 minutes followed by questions and discussion. 
View past research forums.

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College of Design, School of City & Regional Planning, School of Architecture

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  • Created By: Teri Nagel
  • Workflow Status: Published
  • Created On: Sep 20, 2010 - 9:52am
  • Last Updated: Oct 7, 2016 - 9:52pm