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The Historic Preservation Program focuses on creating new roles for architectural and cultural heritage to promote inclusive and resilient communities through the design of technological and aesthetic adaptations, planning and policy innovations, and social and historical research. It is a studio-based program that frames preservation both as an experimental form of creative expression and as a critical form of collective action guided by philosophical, ethical, and critical thinking, supported by evidence of its benefits to society, and enabled by emerging technologies and policy tools. It teaches preservation as a social, material, and environmental process; as a way of thinking and acting through buildings and places of cultural significance to improve the built environment and people’s quality of life. Students conduct a year-long individual research thesis on a wide range of preservation topics. The Preservation Technology Lab supports pedagogy and student research on topics related to preservation technology, and houses an extensive teaching library of historic building materials and architectural fragments.
The Ph.D. program in Historic Preservation is oriented toward the training of future historic preservation scholars. The first of its kind in the United States, the program aims to expand the discipline’s range of intellectual entanglements and cultivate new paradigms for scholarly research, experimental practice, global action, and communication. The Ph.D. program focuses on the critical interrogation of preservation technology, broadly conceived, and is housed in the Preservation Technology Lab.