American Institute of Architects Foundation Adds Three More Members to National Resilience Initiative, Completing Nationwide Network

Washington, D.C.  – March 09, 2016 – The American Institute of Architects Foundation, (AIAF) along with the American Institute of Architects (AIA) and the Association of Collegiate Schools of Architecture (ACSA), today announced three new members of the National Resilience Initiative, creating a nationwide network of six resilient design studios geared toward helping local communities become better prepared to bounce forward from the impacts of natural disasters and climate change.

The new members of the National Resilience Initiative network are the University of Minnesota’s Center for Sustainable Building Research, California Polytechnic State University in San Luis Obispo, California and Hampton University in Virginia. All are already conducting research into coping with a variety of climate change/resiliency issues, from rising sea levels (Hampton University) to drought/earthquake preparedness (CalPoly) to disaster planning and response (University of Minnesota.)

“These new studios – along with the three existing NRI studios – represent six regional areas of focus for resilience planning within the ten federal regions designated as at-risk for the effects of disaster by the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA),” said AIAF Executive Director Sherry-Lea Bloodworth Botop. “These six members will form a strong resilient studio network backbone that can serve as a point of entry to decision-makers and stakeholders who need to access design solutions for pressing issues in resilience.”

Established in 2013 as a Clinton Global Initiative commitment, the NRI network will convene existing and emerging university-based design centers that are engaged in planning, facilitation and project implementation within their communities. The NRI’s goal is to act as a clearinghouse of resilience design ideas and planning approaches that can be shared with local communities. The first annual convening of all six NRI charter members will take place this summer at the American Institute of Architects’ headquarters in Washington, D.C.

The new members will complement and share best practices about disaster preparedness and resilience with the three existing NRI studios – Mississippi State (Gulf Coast / Southern Region), The University of Arkansas (Lower Mid-West Region), and the New Jersey Institute of Technology (East Coast Region). The Foundation recently issued its first annual report on what the NRI studios have achieved, and a map of the network and the risks being addressed by each studio can be found here.  View a map of all the Design Studios here.  

About the American Institute of Architects Foundation (AIAF)
The American Institute of Architects Foundation preserves, honors and advances excellence in design for the benefit of the public.  As a nonprofit philanthropic extension of the American Institute of Architects, the Architects Foundation is the preeminent voice and advocate for architecture and design in America.  The Architects Foundation is dedicated to the belief that good design is good for all and plays an essential role in transforming lives and building a better world.

About The American Institute of Architects
Founded in 1857, members of the American Institute of Architects consistently work to create more valuable, healthy, secure, and sustainable buildings, neighborhoods, and communities. Through nearly 300 state and local chapters, the AIA advocates for public policies that promote economic vitality and public wellbeing. Members adhere to a code of ethics and conduct to ensure the highest professional standards. The AIA provides members with tools and resources to assist them in their careers and business as well as engaging civic and government leaders, and the public to find solutions to pressing issues facing our communities, institutions, nation and world. Visit

About the Association of Collegiate Schools of Architecture
ACSA is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, membership association founded in 1912 to advance the quality of architectural education. The school membership in ACSA has grown from 10 charter members to over 250 schools in several membership categories. These include full membership for all accredited programs in the United States and government-sanctioned schools in Canada, candidate membership for schools seeking accreditation, and affiliate membership for schools for two-year and international programs. Through these schools, over 5,000 architecture faculty members are represented. In addition, over 500 supporting members composed of architecture firms, product associations and individuals add to the breadth of interest and support of ACSA goals. Visit

John Schneidawind
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