Vanky, Arquero de Alarcón Named U-M Public Engagement Fellows

Anthony Vanky, an assistant professor of urban and regional planning, is among 11 University of Michigan faculty members who have been named 2021 Public Engagement Faculty Fellows. In addition, María Arquero de Alarcón, an associate professor of architecture and urban and regional planning, will serve as one of six Mentor Fellows.

The Public Engagement Faculty Fellowship, offered by the Center for Academic Innovation in partnership with units across campus, allows faculty who are eager to explore and build their public engagement skills the opportunity to spend the summer reflecting, building skills, and planning projects with public engagement experts across campus. In addition, the fellowship provides financial and in-kind support for a public engagement project. 

They are guided by Mentor Fellows with more experience in public engagement and who are interested in continued learning and being part of a larger public engagement community at U-M.

 “I applaud U-M’s inspiring new cohort of Public Engagement Faculty Fellows. A tremendous strength of our university’s faculty is their commitment and ambition to use their talents to serve society. The fellows and the Center for Academic Innovation are ensuring that we uphold the highest values of our public mission,” President Mark Schlissel said.

“The center is always focused on ways we can move U-M forward and help define what it means to be an inclusive higher education institution. It is vital to connect the work of the university to advancing societal goals, including through productive conversations and collaborations with public stakeholders,” said James DeVaney, founding executive director of the Center for Academic Innovation.

Vanky’s research considers the use of digital data and pervasive sensing technologies to design, plan, evaluate urban environments, and spans the disciplines of urban design, urban technologies, innovation studies, and public health. Alongside his academic work, he is co-founder of Social Studies, a multidisciplinary strategic consulting and research and analytics firm that offers innovative perspectives on 21st century cities to government, businesses, and non-profit organizations. 

Arquero de Alarcón is director of the master of urban design program at Taubman College. Her work advances urban strategies promoting cultural and environmental values in territories under conditions of scarcity. She also leads MAde Studio, a research-based, collaborative design practice that offers integrated expertise in architecture, landscape, and urbanism. Through a combination of grant-funded research initiatives, urban design experimentation, and site-specific interventions, MAde Studio focuses on the co-generation of socio-spatial strategies addressing urban transformation in collaboration with local partners and residents. 

Learn more and see the complete list of 2021 Fellows here.