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George Elvin

Assoc Professor


Brooks Hall NA


I am an Associate Professor of Architecture at North Carolina State University, where my research and teaching focus on Architecture for Extreme Environments. I am the author of over 50 books, chapters and articles, and have delivered lectures and workshops in over 20 countries. In 1981, I founded my own design-build firm, and in 1998 received my PhD in Architecture from the University of California at Berkeley. I have taught at the University of California at Berkeley and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and I have been a Fellow at the Center for Energy Research, Education and Service, the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning Institute, and the University of Edinburgh’s Institute for Advanced Studies in the Humanities.


My teaching and research focus on learning from nature about how plants and animals adapt to extreme environments and then applying those lessons to resilient building design. I also look at how people adapt to extreme environments, and I recognize the wisdom of native communities in that subject. I focus on resilient design for adapting to climate change. I’ve been to the world’s hottest, dryest, wettest, windiest and snowiest places to study how plants, animals and people adapt to extreme environments. When I can, I take my students with me, and they bring back nature’s lessons and apply them to the design of resilient buildings.