Faculty Position in Data and Design
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
School of Architecture and Planning, Department of Architecture
Cambridge, MA
Full time


The Massachusetts Institute of Technology Department of Architecture, together with the Schwarzman College of Computing (SCC), seeks candidates for a tenure-track faculty position in Data and Design to be hired at the Assistant Professor level to begin January 1, 2023, or on a mutually agreed date thereafter.

The need for a sustainable built environment demands new tools and new approaches to design and visualization. We are seeking a new faculty member dedicated to design research efforts that leverage information, creative computation, and digital tools to create new approaches and impacts—from the scale of neighborhoods and communities to the scale of the planet.

The position is open to multiple interpretations of this challenge. These include design as an interface to information, new conceptions of the role of information in design processes and outcomes, the creation of intelligent design tools, speculative and creative computation, data-rich installations, visualization-as-animation, and critical approaches to spatialized visualization in the context of machine learning and artificial intelligence. We are interested in new modes of practice and new approaches to the social, cultural, and ethical aspects of design in a landscape of data and its application to design problems.

At the Institute level, this position will contribute to larger conversations at MIT about the role of data and computing in creative thinking, culture, expression, and problem-solving. Alongside colleagues at the intersection of computing and fields such as music and linguistics, the successful candidate will help reveal how data and computing can inform design, and also, crucially, how design thinking and culture can inform new approaches to computing. While candidates will be expected to situate themselves in a department concerned with the future of the planet and built environment, they may also situate themselves in one or more specific scales at which the department undertakes these efforts–from the design of objects, to landscapes, to physical architecture, which remains at the center of the department’s work.

At the department level, the successful candidate will contribute to teaching in design programs at every level, with an emphasis on research-focused graduate work and undergraduate teaching in architecture and design. The successful candidate will show potential to develop courses that reach across disciplinary boundaries, as part of a larger, Institute-wide conversation on design, to which the Department of Architecture is a central contributor.

Uniquely situated at the intellectual intersection(s) of the Department of Architecture and the SCC, this faculty position will provide strategic linkages between the cultures of architectural design and computation. While the candidate’s teaching and tenure process will be located primarily in Architecture, they will contribute actively to the growth and development of the SCC, with balanced responsibilities in teaching and service in the SCC. Above all, the successful candidate will be proactive in identifying opportunities for new forms of connectivity between the Department of Architecture and the SCC.

One of MIT’s first departments and home to the first professional program in Architecture in the US, the MIT Department of Architecture is dedicated to an equitable, sustainable, humanistic, and technologically sophisticated vision of design and pedagogy. The academic structure of the department is unique in that each of its five disciplinary areas–1) Architecture + Urbanism, 2) History, Theory and Criticism, 3) Building Technology, 4) Art, Culture and Technology, and 5) Computation–work at equal intensity across disciplinary boundaries to create an environment in which innovative research and scholarship fuse with the pedagogical agendas of ongoing design inquiries. The department also engages productively in research and education alliances with the other units in the School of Architecture and Planning–the Department of Urban Studies and Planning, the Media Lab/Program in Media Arts and Sciences, the Program in Art, Culture and Technology, and the Center for Real Estate. Given this context, the department is explicitly committed to excellence in both pedagogical and research activities.

The SCC is a college that works across all five of MIT’s existing schools. The college is designed to lead in computing education and research across a wide range of disciplines, as well as in computer science, AI, and related fields. The SCC both brings together existing MIT programs in computing and develops new cross-cutting educational and research programs. For existing programs, the college facilitates coordination and manages growth in areas such as computer science, artificial intelligence, data systems and society, and operations research, as well as helps to strengthen interdisciplinary computing programs such as computational science and engineering. For new areas, the college is creating platforms for the study and practice of social and ethical responsibilities of computing, for multidepartmental computing education, and for incubating new interdisciplinary computing activities.

The Department of Architecture and the Schwarzman College of Computing (SCC) are committed to fostering interdisciplinary design work and research that can address grand challenges facing our society. We are especially interested in qualified candidates who can contribute, through their research, teaching, and/or service, to the diversity and excellence of the academic community. The successful candidate will have a shared appointment in both the Department of Architecture and the SCC, in either the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science (EECS) or the Institute for Data, Systems, and Society (IDSS), with teaching duties within Architecture and SCC, including the Institute-wide Common Grounds initiative in computing education. We seek candidates who will provide inspiration and leadership in design and/or research and contribute proactively to all levels of teaching in the Department of Architecture and the SCC. The ability to contribute to undergraduate as well as graduate coursework will be a major criteria in the search.

The candidate is expected to participate in the intellectual life of the Institute and to teach and develop pedagogical initiatives that transcend disciplinary boundaries. Faculty duties include teaching, advising students, and conducting original scholarly research and/or contributing to the disciplines via professional practice.

Candidates are expected to hold an advanced degree in Architecture, Design, or Art/ Media Studies (at the Master’s or Ph.D. level) or a Ph.D in Computer Science, Data Science, Engineering, Physics, or Applied Mathematics or a similar discipline by the beginning of employment. The committee is particularly interested in candidates whose education and understanding that demonstrates the ability to engage across these disciplines.

Application Instructions:

Interested applicants should submit a statement of interest outlining their interests and qualifications for the position, including major professional, research, pedagogical goals and achievements. We also request a statement on diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging, including past and current contributions as well as vision and plans for the future in these areas. Applicants are encouraged to discuss approaches to fostering an inclusive environment, including but not limited to teaching, mentoring, and affirming diverse viewpoints. We request a curriculum vitae; three current references with contact information; and a maximum 36 page, letter-sized portfolio of design, research, or scholarly work.

Review of applicants will begin March 7, 2022, however applications will continue to be accepted until the position is filled. Please submit materials to: http://apply.interfolio.com/101574. For technical issues, please contact Interfolio staff at 877-997-8807 or help@interfolio.com/101574.

The Department of Architecture continues to develop its diverse communities of teachers and scholars, and strongly encourages applications from women, veterans, individuals with disabilities, and/or members of underrepresented groups.
MIT is an equal opportunity employer. We value diversity and strongly encourage applications from individuals from all identities and backgrounds. All qualified applicants will receive equitable consideration for employment based on their experience and qualifications, and will not be discriminated against on the basis of race, color, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, religion, disability, age, genetic information, veteran status, ancestry, or national or ethnic origin. MIT’s full policy on Nondiscrimination can be found here.