School of Planning Lecture Series

Planning for Sustainable Urban Futures 

All lectures will be held in person at DAAP. Recordings of each will be available for viewing approximately one week after the scheduled event. 

Past Lectures

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Cincinnati Mayor Aftab Pureval

Mayor Aftab Pureval - Lecture Recording

January 26, 2023

Title: Cincinnati’s Exciting Future: How Urban Planners and Designers Will Help Make It Happen

Cincinnati has a storied and exciting past but its most exciting days lie ahead. We all need to do what we can to make sure that Cincinnati will be one of the country’s most prosperous, beautiful, friendly, and safe places – a “city of choice” that’s also a “city of justice.” Planners and designers have critical roles to play in making sure we create that dynamic future for Cincinnati and our city government holds them in high regard.

Bio - Hon. Aftab Pureval

Aftab Pureval is the 70th Mayor of Cincinnati and is making history as Cincinnati’s first Asian-American mayor. He was raised in Southwest, Ohio, the son of first-generation Americans. As mayor, he is working to grow the City of Cincinnati equitably across all of its 52 neighborhoods. He has made equitable economic growth a top priority of his administration, along with the improvement of public safety, the development of affordable housing, and environmental action.

Before being elected Mayor he served as Hamilton County Clerk of Courts from 2016 to 2021 – the first Democrat to hold that office in over 100 years.

Mayor Pureval graduated from The Ohio State University and the University of Cincinnati College of Law. He lives in Clifton with his wife Whitney and their sons, Bodhi and Rami.

Hayden Shelby

Hayden Shelby

Hayden Shelby - Lecture Recording

November 10, 2022 

Title: Putting the “Planner” in Community Development Planning

From the settlement house movement to contemporary community development corporations, community development has long played a key role in planning more just urban futures. However, the people who do this work rarely have “planner” in their title, and the grounded social practices of building community are not often associated with planning in the popular imagination. In this lecture, Hayden Shelby explains the rich history of community development in the planning professions and articulates a vision for educating “community development planners” at DAAP.

Bio – Hayden Shelby, PhD

Hayden Shelby is an Assistant Professor in the School of Planning at DAAP. Her research and teaching focus on how place-based communities are shaped by policies, politics, and the efforts of individual people. Raised in rural Ohio, Hayden has since had the opportunity to live and work in cities around the world. She has researched housing policies and community development issues in places as diverse as Columbus, Honolulu, and Bangkok. Prior to coming to Cincinnati, she was a Peace Corps Volunteer, a Fulbright Fellow, and earned her Ph.D. in City and Regional Planning from the University of California, Berkeley. At UC she teaches courses on housing policy, community development planning, and urban theory. Her work has appeared in such prestigious journals as Housing Policy Debate, the International Journal of Housing Policy, and Berkeley Planning Journal.


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Charles B. Neer

Charles B. Neer - Lecture Recording

October 18, 2022 

Lecture Title: Reimagining Futures for Urban Waterways: A Call for Visioning Agency

After generations of neglect, the Cincinnati area’s Mill Creek is increasingly appreciated as one of the community’s most important natural and community assets, and community and environmental activists are working hard to create a new identity for the waterway that will balance environmental needs and community priorities. Charles Neer, one of America’s most highly respected parks and open space planners, will help local activists and political leaders envision new possible futures for this important urban waterway, using inspiring examples from highly successful restoration projects in Washington, D.C., Louisville, Des Moines, Philadelphia, and Queens, N.Y., and other cities.

Bio – Charles B. Neer

Charles is Senior Associate at WRT Design and leads the firm’s Parks and Open Space practice. Charles’ view of landscape as a productive agent in the shaping of cities, countryside, and culture is informed by 20+ years of experience with urban landscapes, park master planning and design. Charles has served as project manager for national park projects in Philadelphia, Louisville, Austin, and Roanoke – including the FDR Park Master Plan and The Parklands of Floyds Fork. He has worked on various waterfronts, campus master plans and urban designs throughout the country, including the Anacostia Waterfront Initiative in Washington D.C., the Principal Riverwalk in Des Moines, I.A., and Dutch Kills Green, in Queens, N.Y. Charles has taught studios at the University of Pennsylvania and Temple University, is past Board President of the Fairmount Community Development Corporation, and is a Board Member of The McHarg Center for Urbanism and Ecology at the University of Pennsylvania. Charles is a member of the Urban Land Institute, City Parks Alliance, World Urban Parks, and the American Society of Landscape Architects.

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Halina Steiner

Halina Steiner, PhD - Lecture Recording

September 13, 2022 

Lecture Title: Beyond Standard: New Design Standards & Interventions to Improve Water Quality & Habitat 

Communities struggle to maintain and improve water quality and to preserve and enhance habitats along waterways. How can we develop new design standards to improve water quality and habitat? We will consider small-scale interventions that go beyond current design standards and that can have large-scale impacts when constructed throughout a watershed.


Bio - Halina Steiner, PhD

Halina Steiner is Assistant Professor of landscape architecture in the Knowlton School of Architecture at The Ohio State University. Her research, forensic hydrology, focuses on overlaps between professional practice, hydrology, and infrastructure with an emphasis on scale and systems. This interest comes from a background in visual communication and her prior work as Design Director for DLANDstudio Architecture + Landscape Architecture in New York City where she was the project manager for master planning, green infrastructure, temporary installations, and public design projects in New York, St. Louis, New Orleans, Philadelphia, and Nigeria. Forensic hydrology is a hybrid investigation including small-scale interventions to capture sediment from roads, temporary landscape installations to call attention to hydrologic issues that are not readily visible, and narrative drawings challenging how we represent and understand water systems and process.

headshot of Rachel Comte

Rachel Comte - Urban Planning in Urban Forestry 2020-02-04

photograph of Yexuan Gu

Yexuan Gu - DISCIPLINELESS: An Alternative Way of Design Thinking 2020-02-03

man posing in classical clothing

Mauro Ceconello Lecture 2019-04-12

example of Mona El Khafif's artwork

Mona El Khafif Lecture 2019-03-06

headshot of Terry Grundy

Terry Grundy Lecture- BACK FROM THE BRINK: How a Group of UC Urbanists Helped Cincinnati Regain Its Mojo 2019-01-29

photograph of Christian Huelsman during lecture

Christian Huelsman - Alleys and Stairways to Reconnect Communities 2018-11-19

Additional Past Lectures

To view past lectures from any of our four schools within DAAP simply click on the respective button below.