Professor of Architecture and Pioneering Scholar Dana Buntrock Will Retire
Since joining the faculty in 2000, Professor Buntrock has continuously enriched academic life at CED and UC Berkeley through her pioneering scholarship, dedicated teaching, and leadership.
The author of three books and dozens of articles in professional and academic journals, Buntrock is a leading voice on the subject of Japanese architectural and construction practices, addressing how interdisciplinary collaborations and technical opportunities shape architecture. Her publications range across a variety of topics, from the radical changes that occurred in structural design and their architectural outcomes following the 1995 Kobe earthquake (Japanese Architecture as a Collaborative Process (2000)); to the mechanics of Japanese success and excellence in design (Materials and Meaning in Contemporary Japanese Architecture (2010)); and the history and continued importance of prefabrication in Japan (“Prefabricated Housing in Japan,” 2017).
Dana Buntrock’s research stands out for how it moves between contemporary criticism, sensitive historical contextualization, and specialized interpretations of the nature and meaning of construction. There are few scholars today who address these intersections as deeply. In bridging—and often synthesizing—overlapping modes of inquiry, she has carved out a vital niche in the field.
Starting in 2011, Professor Buntrock and Professor Emerita Susan Ubbelohde began to focus on how energy supply and architecture create opportunities for new approaches to architecture in Japan. She has spoken on energy policy and building science to numerous universities and private organizations, including the US National Defense University, the University of Tokyo, and the Architectural Institute of Japan. As Chair of the Center for Japanese Studies (2015-2020), Buntrock made an extraordinarily rich and varied contribution to the intellectual life of the campus. Under her leadership, the center hosted an array of scholars, artists, filmmakers, and cultural leaders through international symposia and workshops. She has also created programming around the civil rights issues of Japanese Americans. Notably, she extended the center’s reach from the humanities to engage with the engineering and science communities on campus.
Her creative achievements in the field have led to two distinguished honors. In 2018, she was named a Distinguished Professor by the Association of Collegiate Schools of Architecture, the primary organization representing North American architecture programs. She was also named the Tomoye Takahashi Chair of Japanese Studies at Berkeley.
Please join us in congratulating Dana for advancing architectural education through teaching, design, scholarship, research, and service at CED and for her well-earned retirement.1st, after 22 years at UC Berkeley’s College of Environment.