Michael Sorkin Biography

Michael Sorkin (born 1948, Washington, D.C.) is an American architectural critic and author of several hundred articles in a wide range of both professional and general publications. He is also Distinguished Professor of Architecture and Director of the Graduate Program in Urban Design at the Bernard and Anne Spitzer School of Architecture, City College of New York, part of the City University of New York (CUNY). He is the Principal of Michael Sorkin Studio in New York City, a design practice devoted to both practical and theoretical projects at all scales, with special interest in sustainable urban environments/green city architecture. He is also Chair of the Institute for Urban Design, a non-profit organization that provides a forum for debate over critical issues in contemporary urban planning, development, and design.

From 1993 to 2000 he was Professor of Urbanism and Director of the Institute of Urbanism at the Academy of Fine Arts Vienna. He has been professor at numerous schools of architecture including the Architectural Association, the Aarhus School of Architecture, Cooper Union (for ten years), Carleton, Columbia, Yale (holding both Davenport and Bishop Chairs), Harvard, Cornell (Gensler Chair), Nebraska (Hyde Chair), Illinois, Pennsylvania, Texas, Michigan (Saarinen Chair) and Minnesota (Gilbert Chair). Dedicated to urbanism as both an artistic practice and a medium for social amelioration, Sorkin has conducted studios in such stressed environments as Jerusalem, Nicosia, Johannesburg, Havana, Cairo, Kumasi, Hanoi, Nueva Loja (Ecuador) and Wuhan (China). In 2005 -2006, he directed studio projects for the post-Katrina reconstruction of Biloxi and New Orleans at both CCNY and the University of Michigan.