Skip to main content?

118 | Design Politics in the Climate Emergency

Dr. Kian Goh, RA, Ph.D., is an Assistant Professor of Urban Planning at UCLA Luskin School of Public Affairs. She researches the relationships between urban ecological design, spatial politics, and social mobilization in the context of climate change and global urbanization.

118 | Design Politics in the Climate Emergency

A licensed architect, Dr. Goh co-founded the design firm SUPER-INTERESTING! She has practiced professionally with Weiss/Manfredi and MVRDV. She was previously Assistant Professor of Urban Landscape at Northeastern University School of Architecture and has also taught at MIT, the University of Pennsylvania, the New School, and Washington University in St. Louis. She has also conducted research as an affiliate of the Resilient Cities Housing Initiative at MIT, and the Urban Theory Lab at Harvard Graduate School of Design. Dr. Goh received a Ph.D. in Urban and Environmental Planning from MIT, and a Master of Architecture from Yale University.

Dr. Goh’s teaching and advocacy encompass these different ways of examining climate change – not as a technological problem, but as a social one. Recent publications include articles on urban flooding and climate change adaptation in the International Journal of Urban and Regional Research and Urban Studies, a book chapter on urban design and social justice in the edited book The New Companion to Urban Design, and articles on “architecture and global ethnographies” in e-flux journal, designing urban adaptation in Perspecta: The Yale Architectural Journal, and queer space and activism in the Annals of the American Association of Geographers

Dr. Goh’s current research investigates the urban spatial politics of climate change adaptation. This research traces the flows of ideas and influence between sites and adaptation strategies in Southeast Asia, North America, and Europe. More broadly, her research interests include urban theory, urban design, environmental planning, and urban political ecology. She is currently completing a book project titled A Political Ecology of Design: Contested Visions of Urban Climate Resilience.

We were lucky enough to be joined by Professor Goh on our podcast Social Design Insights, where we discussed how politics, design, and climate change come together. Have a listen at the link above!


Our opening theme music for 2019 is "Bang Bang" and our closing theme is "Salvame" both by Eljuri from her album "La Lucha." The break music for this episode is "Mania Urbania" by Alan Price from his album "Liberty."