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Thursday, May 2 • 10:30am - 12:00pm
Indigenous Placekeeping for an Equitable Future

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This session will explore new sustainable Indigenous housing in North America, bringing together three perspectives as necessary ingredients for activating meaningful change: the user group, sustainability specialists, and Indigenous designers. Our team includes two Indigenous architecture graduates/students who will share their views of existing reservation housing, what they see possible and or desirable in future tribal housing and their perspectives on the connections between sustainability, housing, and Indigenous worldview/ lifeways. A Cree architect and ASU professor of architecture and construction, specializing in Indigenous design and methodologies of practice, will share her ongoing research to be used as a case study for the session: Gila River Indian Community (GRIC) Sustainable Housing Initiative. Additionally, a collaborative architect and partner at coLAB studio, a Tempe-based firm who recently completed the first LBC Net-Zero home in Arizona, will discuss the integration of sustainable building practices while collaborating on the development of a sustainable prototype for GRIC.

Together, the team will utilize a lens of holistic design thinking to speak to the notion of abundance, both present and lacking within many Indigenous communities. The team will talk through the overlay of complementary systems in reservation living – cultural preservation, economic growth, social well-being, environmental quality and political autonomy – as a system that can be utilized beyond reservation borders. We will focus on the lived experience perspective (growing up on the reservation), alongside the perspectives of practitioners who together form the network of systems that can lead innovation in sustainable housing.

There are a number of questions to be examined in this session: how can practitioners, working together as a network of collaborators, act as champions for underserved communities? What are our limitations or challenges as practitioners? How can we act as champions and advocates for our tribal partners in order to bridge and build understandings between communities within and outside reservations? What can we learn from working closely with tribal partners in sustainable development? How do we work with local materials to build ecologically when climate change keeps moving the design parameters?

This session is approved for the following continuing education credits:
  • 1.5 LFA credits
  • 1.5 AIA LU|HSW credits

avatar for Wanda Dalla Costa

Wanda Dalla Costa

Institute Professor, Architect, Arizona State University
Wanda Dalla Costa, AIA, LEED A.P. is a member of the Saddle Lake Cree Nation and has spent nearly 20 years working with Indigenous communities across North America. She holds a joint position at ASU (architecture + construction) where she teaches a community-based design studio. Her... Read More →
avatar for Tierra Miller

Tierra Miller

Navajo Nation Graduate Architecture Student, Arizona State University
Tierra Miller is from Navajo Nation and is an upcoming graduate of the ASU Masters of Architecture program (2019). Her current research focuses on the synergies between bioclimatic architecture and Indigenous design thinking. Miller holds her undergraduate degree in architecture from... Read More →

Thursday May 2, 2019 10:30am - 12:00pm PDT
Hyatt Regency - Hoh Room #609