Department Chairperson, Department of Architecture
The Department of Architecture in the College of Architecture, Art, and Planning (AAP) at Cornell University invites applications for the position of full-time department chairperson at the associate or full professor level, based in Ithaca NY. This is a unique opportunity for an accomplished and ambitious person to provide collaborative leadership for the department. Architecture at Cornell has a long and distinguished record of influential scholarship, creative practice, and pedagogical innovation, and is committed to building an exciting and critical future in these areas. While remaining true to its longstanding strengths and to the ongoing development of its professional and research degree programs, the department is firmly committed to addressing the multiple challenges currently facing the field/discipline, including diversity and inclusion, social equity, environmental sustainability, and public health and safety.
Aspirations and Vision
The department is particularly interested in candidates who can provide intellectual and pedagogical leadership, and a vision of architectural practice and research that strengthens our programs’ involvement with emerging challenges in the built environment. In this context, there is opportunity to strengthen Cornell Architecture’s presence and connection to outside institutions and practices, and to foster national and global collaborations that augment our existing programs in New York City and Rome. The department is also interested in candidates whose vision stimulates innovative relationships with other disciplines at Cornell, including Art, and City and Regional Planning within AAP.
The successful candidate will strengthen our graduate programs and long-standing B.Arch program, while building on new program initiatives. The department is interested in candidates who are attuned to the rapidly changing nature of design practice and the drivers behind this change; who embrace innovative methods for conducting research in architecture; support creative design and scholarly research at all levels; attend to junior faculty development; and expand outreach and collaboration in ways that help our students continue to be leaders within this ever-changing field.
Over the next few years the incoming department chair will play a significant role in faculty renewal. Working in partnership with the college dean, the department faculty, program directors, and students, the new chair will have a leading role in hiring faculty to replace those who are retiring. Short-term visiting faculty hiring is also a significant responsibility of the position.
Situated within a world-class research university, the Department of Architecture is home to two top-ranked, internationally-renowned professional degree programs (B.Arch and M.Arch), as well as research-focused and post-professional Masters degrees in Advanced Architectural Design (M.S. AAD), Matter Design Computation (M.S. MDC), and Computer Graphics (M.S. CG), and a Ph.D. in the History of Architecture and Urban Development (HAUD). The approximately 425 students in the department come from all over the country and the world, creating a remarkably diverse and intellectually stimulating academic environment. The department currently has 25 tenured/tenure-track/professor-of-the-practice faculty with roughly an equal number of visiting faculty from emerging and/or established practices, or who are internationally distinguished scholars in the field.
The department’s center of operations is in Ithaca NY, where the resources and opportunities for innovative and interdisciplinary collaborations across both the college and the university are extensive. Physical facilities for Architecture are contained within three interconnected buildings situated on the campus’s Arts Quad: historic Sibley Hall, the OMA-designed Milstein Hall, and the recently renovated Rand Hall containing the Mui Ho Fine Arts Library and state-of-the-art Material Practices workshop facilities.
The department also has fully integrated academic programs with facilities in New York City and Rome. In New York, interactions with Cornell Tech master’s degree programs are growing quickly, and our extensive alumni connections in the city also greatly enrich the academic program. The reach and engagement of the department’s students, faculty, academic programs, research initiatives, and alumni connections alike go well beyond NYC and Rome, and every semester there are changing strategic engagement initiatives in various locations and cultural contexts around the globe.
Desirable qualifications for this position include: a record of distinction in teaching; a record of exceptional professional practice and/or creative research work and scholarship; experience in academic administration; and a national/global perspective on architectural education, practice, research and scholarship. The candidate should have a breadth of knowledge and diversity of interests in the field, including but not limited to, emerging technologies, ethical and humanistic concerns related to technology and design, architecture in contemporary global cities, sustainable material innovations and fabrication techniques, and how diversity, inclusion and social equity objectives are addressed through architectural design and research. A professional bachelor’s or master’s degree in the field of architecture and/or a PhD in the field of architecture or in a related field is required. Overall qualifications must be commensurate with the requirements for a tenured faculty position at Cornell University.
The candidate must demonstrate leadership and the ability to work effectively in partnership with others. At Cornell, the department chair collaborates with the college dean in leading the department’s academic mission and operations as well as its involvement with broader college and university initiatives. The chair also works strategically to establish departmental priorities and manage the complexity and interconnectedness of its various degree programs, while working effectively and inclusively with the department’s various program directors, faculty, students and staff.
Interested individuals should submit the following items through the university’s online application tool at
- A letter of interest specifying how the candidate’s skills and experiences align with the required qualifications and search objectives;
- An abbreviated CV that highlights notable achievements;
- The names and contact information for five references. (References’ information must be provided at the time of application, but these people will not be contacted without notifying the applicant in advance.)
- A Teaching Statement;
- A Research/Creative Work Statement;
- A Statement of Contribution to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (maximum of one page) that outlines your past, present, and/or future aspirations to promote equity, inclusion, and diversity in your career as a researcher and educator, and/or convey how you see these commitments materializing as a faculty member at Visit the below website for more information on our required statement on contributions to diversity; https://facultydevelopment.cornell.edu/department-resources/recruitment/contribution-to-diversity/
- A selection of up to 10 (total) pieces of creative design work, research and scholarly production, exhibitions, course/studio syllabi and documentation.
Applications will be reviewed beginning December 1, 2020 and will be accepted until the position is filled. The new department chair appointment will begin July 1, 2021. The successful candidate will undergo an expedited review process for indefinite tenure as a departmental faculty member at the associate or full professor level; whereas the appointment to the chair position is for 3 years with the possibility of being renewed for an additional 3-year term.
The Department of Architecture and the College of Architecture, Art, and Planning at Cornell embrace diversity and seek candidates who will contribute to a climate that supports students, faculty and staff of all identities and backgrounds. We strongly encourage individuals from underrepresented identities to apply.
Diversity and Inclusion are a part of Cornell University’s heritage. We are a recognized employer and educator valuing AA/EEO, Protected Veterans, and Individuals with Disabilities. We also recognize a lawful preference in employment practices for Native Americans living on or near Indian reservations. Cornell University is an innovative Ivy League university and a great place to work. Our inclusive community of scholars, students, and staff impart an uncommon sense of larger purpose, and contribute creative ideas to further the university’s mission of teaching, discovery, and engagement.
For questions and additional information, please contact:
Chair Search Committee
Department of Architecture
College of Architecture, Art, and Planning
139 East Sibley Hall
Ithaca, NY 14853-7301
For more information about the department, The College of Architecture, Art, And Planning, and Cornell University, please visit: