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87 | Experiments in Resilience Amid the Backloop

Stephanie Wakefield is an urban geographer specializing in critical infrastructure studies, urban resilience and adaptation, and social-ecological systems thinking and design.

87 | Experiments in Resilience Amid the Backloop

Stephanie Wakefield’s work, developed over more than a decade of teaching and research, explores the diverse practices and technologies of resilient urbanism as both technical phenomenon and catalysts of new kinds of life in the Anthropocene. Before relocating to Miami, she taught Urban Studies and Environmental Studies as Visiting Assistant Professor of Culture and Media at The New School and Instructor at Queens College, and was the founder of resilience network located in Queens which included a regional farm share and skills workshops including fire making, water purification, disaster response, computer security, and pickling.

Stephanie is the author of Anthropocene Back Loop: Experimentation in Unsafe Operating Space and co-editor of Resilience in the Anthropocene: Governance and Politics at the End of the World. She recently completed a new book, The City in the Anthropocene: Resilience, Infrastructure, and Imagination at Miami’s End, which critically explores experimental sea rise adaptations in Miami, Florida and, through these, suggests new limits and possibilities for critical urban theory and practice in the age of climate change.

Stephanie’s work work has been published in  academic journals including Resilience: International Policies, Practices and Discourses, Environment and Planning D: Society and Space, and Geography Compass, and in popular and artistic venues such as Brooklyn Rail, Miami New Times, and May.

Along with scholarly publication and teaching, she frequently works with community groups, art institutions, and nonprofits to explore experimental sustainability planning and community resilience design. Across her work her goal is to shift the center of gravity in resilience and climate change thinking away from designs that reproduce the socioeconomic status quo and toward a widespread, democratic exploration of the transformative potential of the Anthropocene. Currently, Stephanie is Director and Assistant Professor of Human Ecology at Life University (Atlanta, GA).

We were able to speak with Ms. Wakefield on Social Design Insights, where she offered an optimistic vision of an experimental future.


Social Design Insights would like to thank all those who make our weekly show possible: Baruch Zeichner, our Producer and Sound Engineer, Donna Read, for producing our video content, and Leah Freidenrich, Director of the Curry Stone Foundation. Our theme music for 2018 is "Alright With Me" by Reggie Young from his album "Young Street." The break music for this episode is "Anthropocene" by At Depths from their self-titled CD.