Esra Akcan is the Michael A. McCarthy Professor in the Department of Architecture and currently the Director of European Studies at the Einaudi Center for International Studies at Cornell University.
Akcan’s research on modern and contemporary architecture and urbanism foregrounds the intertwined histories of Europe and West Asia, and offers new ways to understand architecture’s global movement, as well as its complicit or constitutive role in global, social and environmental justice. She is the author of Landfill Istanbul: Twelve Scenarios for a Global City (2004); Architecture in Translation: Germany, Turkey and the Modern House (2012); Turkey: Modern Architectures in History (with S. Bozdoğan, 2012), Open Architecture: Migration, Citizenship and Urban Renewal of Berlin-Kreuzberg by IBA 1984/87 (2018) and Building in Exile: Bruno Taut in Turkey (with Bernd Nicolai, 2019). Her book Abolish Human Bans: Intertwined Histories of Living and Learning will be coming out from Canadian Center for Architecture in early 2021. Currently, she is editing the anthology Migration and Discrimination and working on her book Right-to-Heal: Architecture in Post-Conflict and Post-Disaster Societies. She has also guest edited three journal issues, and written around hundred-and-fifty articles and essays in multiple languages on critical and postcolonial theory, modern and contemporary architecture in West Asia and its diasporas in Europe, architectural photography, immigration, translation, globalization and global history.
Akcan’s lecture “Right to Heal: Architecture and Transitional Justice” will deliver research from her current work-in-progress.