Joshua is a design practitioner/researcher/educator working in the realms of placemaking, human-centered design, and urban resilience planning. His project-based experiences have demonstrated how to reconnect humans to one another and to the broader world, helping places address the faces of climate uncertainty, resource scarcity, and social isolation. Joshua's work fosters connections between human systems and natural systems and supports a transdisciplinary approach to problem solving to bring about positive societal change.
Since 2001, Joshua has practiced as a professional designer. Since 2008, he has been teaching at both the undergraduate and graduate levels and working as a designer and researcher throughout a range of disciplines. Of his 13 years of professional experience, the enclosed projects help to his story…
RSLNCY, New York, NY, US, Co-founder & Creative Agent
Founded as a design consulting agency, RSLNCY harnesses the collective expertise of its co-founders to offer communities and institutions design solutions rooted in the principles of social and ecological resilience. Products delivered include resilience planning, social marketing, information graphic design, industrial design, and green infrastructure consultation. Repeat clientele includes a range of NGOs, Universities, community development groups, and city governments. The trajectory of the agency is to utilize for-profit work to power not-for-profit consultation, and the eventual offering of open-sourced and contextualized resilience-by-design solutions to the general public.
Vancouver Board of Parks and Recreation, Vancouver, BC, CA, Landscape Architect & Planner
To broaden his understanding of the public sector component to the pursuit of urban sustainability, Joshua sought an opportunity to work in a planning and design capacity with public open space. Here, he initiated research for, and an assessment of, 160+ playgrounds to improve access to nature, universal design, and physical literacy amongst youth. Further, he oversaw the design of several allotment gardens and gathering spaces for community centers, while he supported mapping efforts to visualize impacts of by-laws and new projects throughout the City. Joshua's roles were supplemented by needs to manage projects, build partnerships with communities, and creatively develop solutions in spite of severe budgetary restraints.
University of British Columbia, Vancouver, BC, CA, Graduate Teaching Assistant
The diversity of Joshua's professional background afforded him several teaching placements at the University of British Columbia. Working with acclaimed professionals and professors, he advised graduate students on design approaches for a range of place-making challenges, each with a socioecological focus. Projects ranged from creating ecologically responsible master plans for new housing development in the land-constrained Metro Vancouver region, to designing play spaces, teaching gardens, and ecorevelatory landscapes for local elementary schools to help bring more teaching out of doors. The teaching placements required not only his knowledge of human-centered design, but also his extensive practice with form, materials, and construction of objects and landscapes. Joshua's role as teaching assistant involved opportunities for giving lectures, directing studio teaching sessions, and leading critiques.
OLIN, Philadelphia, PA, US, Designer & Researcher
As both a designer and researcher, Joshua worked to progress the green infrastructure agenda of this premier landscape architecture firm. The keystone of his experience involved the creation of a precedent for the Philadelphia public school system. The project illustrated how to capture 100% of rainwater on site and use it to transform the grounds of an urban school into a teaching, learning, and food-growing space. Work with this firm also gave him opportunities to contribute to green infrastructure research and design solutions for various international projects. Responsibilities ranged from diagramming concepts for a park-over-structure that bridged a Tokyo highway to editing detail drawings and the specifications manual for a new four-block plaza for the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City.
Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, PA, US, Adjunct Faculty
For six concurrent semesters Joshua taught an array of courses in human-centered design using design thinking models. For three sessions, he instructed the fundamentals of industrial design to introduce non-major graduate and undergraduate students to the profession through the practices of hand drawing and making. Other courses ranged from advising fourth-year communication and industrial design students around a response to a public call for good design, to instructing and fostering development of creative thinking, researching, and prototyping skills necessary for professional practice. Numerous student projects from these courses produced international design awards. Further, Joshua was an instructor for the Pre-College program developed to introduce secondary school students to the professions of communication and industrial design. With each opportunity, he developed syllabi that offered students opportunities to learn and develop their ideas within ecologically-relevant, historically-rooted, and contextually-based realities.
The Western Pennsylvania Conservancy, Pittsburgh, PA, US, Designer & Field Staff
Throughout the immersive field experiences with this nonprofit organization, Joshua found a role to apply his skills in a design-build context. His contributions include the creation of living outdoor public school classrooms, a strategy for a regional green infrastructure toolbox that offered affordable community stormwater management, and maintenance of a regional collection of 140 community flower and vegetable gardens. Every project involved with this position was realized with the valuable help of a network of dedicated volunteers. In turn, this exposure broadened Joshua's understanding of how to design, construct, and maintain shared landscapes.
LaQuatra Bonci Associates, Pittsburgh, PA, US, Senior Designer & Project Director
With this landscape architecture firm Joshua widened his human-centered career path to include community- and regionally-focused work. As an industrial designer, he brought new modes of thought and new business while directing interdisciplinary projects of scales ranging from design of site furniture to planning for nature preserves of several hundred acres. Projects came from all sectors, from public to private, each requiring his ability to align project scopes with client goals. Joshua's roles with marketing direction and landscape design involved tasks that began with proposal creation and idea presentation and resulted in construction management and job completion. His time with this company brought international travel, a mastering of the arts of the community design charrette and the master plan, and a detailed understanding of the power of design to direct land use.
Kolano Design, Pittsburgh, PA, US, Senior Designer & Project Director
Joshua began his professional career here as a multidisciplinary designer and rose quickly through the ranks to become the department head of consumer products and of environmental graphics. Joshua oversaw development, production, installation, and delivery of a range of projects and managed small teams to fulfill diverse scopes. Here he learned how to excel as a generalist while attending to detail, how to carry small-company burdens, and how to have objects manufactured and spaces built under budget without compromising vision. Project work ranged from exhibit and interior design, to design of housewares for North American glassware producers, to the creation of the physical branding and wayfinding for Frank Lloyd Wright’s Fallingwater.
The University of British Columbia, Vancouver, BC, CA, Masters, Masters of Advanced Studies in Landscape Architecture
Study Focus: Sustainable Urbanism & Applications of Socioecological Resilience
Rochester Institute of Technology, Rochester, NY, US, Bachelors, Industrial Design
Associates Degree: Illustration
Liberal Arts Focus: Environmental Studies