Princeton University has received a grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation to lead an interdisciplinary project on urbanism in the Americas.
The Princeton-Mellon Architecture, Urbanism and Humanities Initiative will receive $1.96 million distributed over four years. The project's focus is "Cities of the Americas: Architecture, Society, Policy and Culture," and the initiative will be led by Stan Allen, the George Dutton '27 Professor of Architecture, and Alison Isenberg, a professor of history and co-director of the Program in Urban Studies.
Allen said the initiative will build on broad faculty and student interest in urbanism over the last decade.
"It represents a major step forward in engaging the University community, and in particular Princeton's resources in the humanities," said Allen, who is also director of the Center for Architecture, Urbanism and Infrastructure and former dean of the architecture school. "When we first started looking at the potential faculty resources in urbanism, it was remarkable to find such a diverse group of faculty from so many different fields — from English to history, to engineering, sociology, American studies or Latin American studies — who had an interest in cities. … We are never going to solve the technical, design or policy issues facing cities today if we don’t have a larger understanding of the city as a cultural object: cities are, in a way, mankind's largest collective works of art."