College of Environmental Design Associate Professor of Architecture and Urban Design Nicholas DeMonchaux was recently named a Bakar Faculty Fellow for 2017-2018, in addition to being named the recipient of the Spark Fund Award, an award meant to accelerate faculty research into tangible, positive societal impact through commercialization.
Professor DeMonchaux will be exploring in the sustainability realm focusing on research surrounding his latest book, Local Code. His proposal, titled “Local Code: Connecting CAD & GIS for Networked and Sustainable Urban Design” will connect two previously separate worlds of information and design in the built environment: Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and Computer-Aided Design (CAD).
His research during the last five years has shown how a robust integration between CAD and GIS can produce unprecedented and essential design work, such as his 3,659 individual proposals for distributed ecological infrastructure in San Francisco, Los Angeles, and New York detailed in the book. Such proposals accomplish much of what large, single infrastructure proposals would accomplish for the city, but at a reduced cost, and with far greater resilience and investment in at-risk communities. As well as a way to make better cities and landscapes, however, the methods Professor DeMonchaux and his team have prototyped are potentially instrumental for a range of design markets. From locally optimizing solar energy installations to effectively configuring ecological prefabricated housing on many sites, his work can play a key role in a wide range of new, digital connections between how we map the world and how we make it.
The Bakar Fellows Program enhances UC Berkeley’s impact on the California economy by catalyzing the translation of basic scientific discoveries and engineering innovation into practical benefit. More specifically, the Bakar Fellows Program supports early-stage and commercially promising research by UC Berkeley faculty and their research groups.
The Bakar Fellows Program comprises a strong network that assists researchers in introducing their discoveries. On a competitive basis, Bakar Fellows are awarded discretionary research support to mature and translate their groundbreaking discoveries and innovations into commercial solutions.
Started in 2012, the Bakar Fellows Program enriches Berkeley by supporting entrepreneurial faculty & their research groups. To date, the Bakar Fellows have formed the following startup companies, with more underway.