Stuart Weitzman School of Design

Understanding infrastructure

In the second episode of Penn Today’s “Understand This ...” podcast series, emphasizing interdisciplinary perspectives, a Wharton and Weitzman School discuss the past, present, and future of infrastructure.

Brandon Baker

In the News

WHYY (Philadelphia)

Philly Council calls for hearings as city’s auto fatality rate soars

Erick Guerra of the Stuart Weitzman School of Design attributed a spike in car crashes in part to increased alcohol consumption. “People are drinking more during COVID so probably a high share are drunk. And people know there’s a higher consequence, so they run,” he said. “The other reason is just speed…. When there are less people on the road, you can go faster. And that really impacts the fatality rate.”


The New Yorker

The new monuments that America needs

Paul Farber and Ken Lum of the Stuart Weitzman School of Design and Philadelphia’s Monument Lab spoke about the dismantling of problematic statues and the process of democratically designing new ones. People have been taught to interpret statues “as unitary and their message as unified, rooted in consensus, as opposed to rooted in a subjective decision that is only a reflection of a segment of the community that had power,” said Lum.



As China cracks down, Hong Kongers start digitally preserving their city

Randall Mason of the Stuart Weitzman School of Design commented on efforts to create a digital archive of Hong Kong’s culture. “Preservation is always a reflection of contemporary culture,” he said. “We have to get comfortable with the fact that if we want to communicate the past, it’s a creative process and not just a preservation process. It would be crazy not to use these digital tools.”



How to put up monuments that truly recon with American History

Paul Farber of the Stuart Weitzman School of Design and Center for Public Art and Space visiting scholar Sue Mobley spoke about President Trump’s proposed National Garden of American Heroes and proposed a new democratic process for creating monuments. “History doesn’t fit well in statues,” said Mobley. “Movements don’t fit well in summaries; they’re ongoing.”


Philadelphia Inquirer

Philly’s housing insecurity crisis needs long-term solutions

Claudia Aiken, Sydney Goldstein, and Vincent Reina of the Stuart Weitzman School of Design wrote an op-ed about Philadelphia’s housing crisis. “Unaffordable rents, a tsunami of layoffs largely in the service industries where many low-income renters were employed, and the vanishing housing safety net created a perfect storm in which low-income, and particularly Black, renters have nowhere to turn,” they said.