Richard Rogers


Harvard Graduate School of Design (GSD) is pleased to announce the six winners of the 2018 Richard Rogers Fellowship, a residency program at the Wimbledon House, the landmarked residence designed by Lord Richard Rogers for his parents in the late 1960s. Now entering its second cycle, the Fellowship is inspired by Lord Rogers’s commitment to cross-disciplinary investigation and engagement, evident across his prolific output as an architect, urbanist, author, and activist. Harvard GSD introduced the Fellowship in October 2016, and named its inaugural class of fellows in February 2017.

“From property guardianship to large-scale prototyping of urban environments, the diversity of subjects taken up by the 2018 cohort of fellows is extraordinary, and the way they propose to engage their projects with London is very exciting to see,” says Mohsen Mostafavi, Dean of Harvard GSD and member of the Fellowship Selection Committee. “We look forward to the second year of this important program, and are eager to witness the consequences of this research.”

The Richard Rogers Fellowship activates Rogers’s historic Wimbledon House as a site of collaborative investigation for researchers and practitioners into topics that have been central to Rogers’s life and career, including questions of urbanism, sustainability, and how people use cities.

2018 Fellows

2018 Fellows: Spring


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Irina Davidovici (Zurich)

Housing as Urban Commons: Social Practices for Collective Dwelling

Irina Davidovici obtained her doctorate in the history and philosophy of architecture at the University of Cambridge. Before that, she qualified as an architect and practiced in the London offices of Herzog & de Meuron and Caruso St. John. Drawing upon her dual foundation, Davidovici pursues research in the field of modern and contemporary architecture, with a focus on Switzerland and Britain, as well as the history of social housing, with emphasis on ideology and urban planning. She is currently a postdoctoral researcher at ETH Zurich, where she is finishing her Habilitation thesis on the integration of early residential estates in European cities and working on the research project Flora Ruchat Roncati at ETH Zurich, 1985–2002. She has lectured at ETH Zurich, the Accademia di Architettura Mendrisio, EPFL Lausanne, and Kingston University, and has served as jury member for the Swiss Pavilion at the Venice Biennale since 2014. Her publications include the monograph Forms of Practice: German Swiss Architecture 1980–2000 (2012, second edition 2018), the edited volume Colquhounery: Alan Colquhoun from Bricolage to Myth (2015), as well as articles in OASE, AA Files, Casabella, archithese, ARCH+ and Werk, Bauen + Wohnen.


Davidovici will use her residency to conduct a comparative study of London co-housing schemes and Zurich housing cooperatives, viewed through the common criteria of citizen participation, self-governance, sustainability, and social inclusion. The topic is developed from an architectural perspective, focusing on the impact of communal living and participative processes on the design of innovative prototypes for collective housing.


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Peter Buš (Zurich)

Large-scale Urban Prototyping for Responsive Urban Environments: Towards Distinctive and Customized Future Cities

Peter Buš is a postdoctoral researcher and lecturer at the Chair of Information Architecture at ETH Zürich. In his research and teaching agenda he concentrates on the development of custom-based computational environments, design workflows and simulation strategies within the scope of Responsive Cities focusing on end-users’ perspective. This includes the development of cognitive design computing frameworks for urban and participatory design activities linked with current advancement in digital technologies. His contributions appeared in variety of conferences and events, including CAADRIA, eCAADe and CAAD Futures.

After he graduated with a Master of Arts in Architecture degree from the Academy of Fine Arts and Design in Bratislava in Slovakia, he founded a design research platform Peter Buš | Architecture | Computational Design | Research, where he explores the usage of generative computer coding and advanced modelling techniques for architecture and urban environments. Prior to obtaining his PhD degree in Architecture Theory and Design from the Department of Architectural Modelling (MOLAB) at the Czech Technical University in Prague, he gained experience as a practicing architect and as a researcher at the Future Cities Laboratory SEC in Singapore.

Through the Richard Rogers Fellowship, Peter will investigate potentialities of computation, digital fabrication methods, and prototyping practices for their applications of construction deliveries in large-scale urban contexts and their capacities to respond to citizens’ necessities. Within this scope, the research aims to reveal, examine, and define to what extent the return of workshop models through digital making is capable to deal with large quantities of bespoke productions, considering the current advancements in a building industry and fabrication technologies as well as a position of citizens in on-site participation.

2018 Fellows: Summer


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Aleksandr Bierig (Cambridge)

The Ashes of the City: Energy, Economy, and the London Coal Exchange

Aleksandr Bierig is a PhD candidate studying architectural and urban history at the Harvard GSD. His research focuses on the intersection of architecture, economy, and environment, particularly between the mid-seventeenth and mid-nineteenth centuries in Britain and its empire. This work is concerned with how it came to pass that buildings began to be conceived environmentally—that is, as an interior space of often purified comfort set apart from the threatening vicissitudes of the external world, as well as an instrument that might serve to manage environmental, economic, and social risks. His dissertation investigates the interaction between coal use and architecture in London between the Great Fire of 1666 and the construction of the second London Coal Exchange in 1849. Other recent work includes investigations into the late eighteenth-century English cottage, the early nineteenth-century plantation in the American south, and changing concepts of building ventilation between 1650 and 1850. Prior to his PhD studies, Bierig completed his MArch from Princeton University and his BA in Architecture from Yale University. He has worked for a number of architectural firms in the United States and Europe, and has published articles and essays in LogClogArchitectural RecordThe Architectural Review, and Pidgin.


During the Richard Rogers Fellowship, Bierig will be advancing his dissertation research, exploring the architectural, infrastructural, and commercial regulations of the eighteenth-century coal trade, including documentation on coal taxation, records of debates on the London Coal Trade, and designs for metropolitan improvements. This work will take place at several archives and institutions, including the London Metropolitan Archives, the National Archives, and the British Museum.


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Alexis Kalagas

Deflating the London Bubble: Non-Profit Housing Strategies

Born in Sydney, Kalagas is a writer and urban strategist currently based in Zürich, Switzerland. Most recently, he spent four years at the interdisciplinary design practice Urban-Think Tank, working on a range of research, design, exhibition, and media projects focused on housing and inclusive urban development in Europe, Latin America, and sub-Saharan Africa. Previously, following graduate studies in Geneva and Boston, he was involved in an early stage print and digital media start-up dedicated to in-depth coverage of international affairs and global policy. He began his career in Canberra, Australia, serving as a foreign policy advisor with the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet.

Kalagas co-edited the book Reactivate Athens (Ruby Press, 2017), and has guest edited three issues of SLUM Lab magazine. His writing on cities and urban design has appeared in numerous publications, including Architectural Design (AD), Perspecta, trans, Migrant Journal, a+t, the Journal of Visual Culture, and Harvard Design Magazine, as well as the edited volumes CARTHA on Making Heimat (Park Books, 2017) and Re-Living the City: UABB 2015 (Actar, 2016). He has also taught at the Department of Architecture at ETH Zürich and the School of Social and Political Sciences at the University of Melbourne.

A decade on from the subprime crisis, Kalagas notes, cities worldwide are again contending with risky housing bubbles. During the fellowship, Kalagas intends to explore how alternative models of affordable housing could be adapted and scaled in places like London that are reckoning with this acute challenge. In particular, Kalagas is interested in whether non-speculative, rental-based developments could succeed in cities shaped by a persistent dream of homeownership, and take root in an overheated property market.

2018 Fellows: Fall


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Kaz Yoneda

Growing Pains: Comparative Analyses of Un/Fulfilled Potentials and Legacies of Two Olympiads

Kaz Yoneda is the principal and founder of bureau 0-1, a practice for architecture, urbanism, and research based in Tokyo. Born in Seattle and raised in California, Kaz went on to receive a BArch with Honors from the Cornell University College of Architecture, Art, and Planning. After a two-year collaboration with Sou Fujimoto, he attended Harvard GSD and received his MArch II with Honors in 2011. Thereafter, he was appointed to run Harvard GSD’s Studio Abroad with Toyo Ito in Tokyo. After serving as an inaugural

director of space design for takram design engineering from 2011 to 2014, Yoneda launched bureau 0-1. Currently, he serves as an adjunct assistant professor of Architecture and Urban Design at Keio University, as well as a visiting lecturer at Japan Women’s University. He has previously taught at Cornell University and Nihon University College of Fine Arts, and has lectured at various institutions. In 2017, he began the Praxis Lecture series with A+U and currently serves as its advisor. His interviews and written pieces have been published in Shinkenchiku, GA Japan 138, The Architectural Review, Redshift, and Built. His works have been exhibited at dOCUMENTA 13, SAIC Sullivan Gallery, and 21_21 Design Sight. Yoneda has contributed to or featured in WIRED, Motherboard, ICON, and Architecture Boston.

Yoneda’s Richard Rogers Fellowship research will focus on the design protocols of mega-scale developments, and “Tokyoism,” which he calls a projective manifesto for a city without one. His fellowship research takes a topical and critical look at the 2012 London Olympics, in comparison to Tokyo’s forthcoming 2020 Olympics, to conduct analyses of its transparent process, innovation, and design evaluation. It is the greater ambition of this project to imagine what Tokyo could have become if its enabling system endowed much of what should have been learned from London.


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Cathy Smith (Newcastle, Australia)

The Rise of the (Property) Guardians: Urban Tenure and Temporary Occupation in the Twenty-First Century City 

Cathy Smith is an Australian architect, interior designer, and academic. With professional and research qualifications and experience in architecture and interior design along with a PhD in architectural theory and history, Smith operates at the theory-practice nexus. She is particularly interested in issues of equity and social agency in the built environment, and her own practice is focused on small scale, low-budget, and temporary DIY (Do It Yourself) installations. As an academic, she has taught in the subject areas of design, history, and theory and construction at several Australian universities, including the University of Newcastle (current), the University of Queensland, and the Queensland University of Technology. She is also the inaugural Turnbull Foundation Women in the Built Environment scholar at the University of New South Wales (2018-2020). Her scholarly research appears in a number of international journals including Australian Feminist Studies, Architectural Histories, Interstices, Architectural Theory Review, and IDEA. In parallel with her recent research on the temporary occupation of vacant commercial buildings by artists and artisans, she participated in the Renew Newcastle property guardianship scheme, which ignited her interest in the benefits and challenges of the phenomenon more broadly.

Smith’s interdisciplinary research will develop an ethical and theoretical framework for engaging with the emergent phenomenon of London “property guardianship,” a term used to describe the sanctioned, temporary occupation of vacant commercial and residential buildings in Europe, North America and Australia. This research will focus on the stakeholder experiences of the London “model” of property guardianship by situating them in a broader international and critical scholarly context.


Spring fellows


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Namik Mackic
(Oslo + Cambridge)

The Return of the Group Form: A Comparative Speculation
on Radical Urban Regeneration in London and Berlin

Namik Mackic holds a degree in music from the Norwegian Academy of Music, philosophy from the University of Oslo, and Master in Design Studies from Harvard GSD. He is currently a research associate with Harvard Mellon Urban Initiative, and guest critic at the Rhode Island School of Design. He has served as critic and lecturer MIT School of Architecture and Planning, AHO School of Architecture and Design, Pratt Institute, Parsons the New School for Design, among other institutions. Mackic has worked as a researcher, curator, critic, artist, and documentary filmmaker, collaborating with variety of international organizations, including the Norwegian Ministry of Culture, Norwegian Ministry of Research and Education, Nordic Cultural Fund, and the World Wildlife Fund Mediterranean Programme Office.

Mackic’s fellowship research compares trajectories of citizen-driven initiatives in two key capitals of post-Brexit, “migrant crisis”-stricken Europe, London and Berlin. His proposal highlights the role of refugees, immigrants, and other structurally disadvantaged populations, and projectively casts them as drivers of new forms of spatial development.


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Maik Novotny
(Vienna + Stuttgart)

The State of the Estate: A Tale of Two Cities

Maik Novotny studied architecture and urban planning at the University of Stuttgart and TU Delft. Since 2000, he has been living in Vienna, working as an architect, planner, and teacher in the Department of Spatial and Sustainable Design at TU Vienna University. He is the architecture critic for the daily newspaper Der Standard and the weekly magazine Falter, and contributes to a variety of other media outlets. He coedited the books Eastmodern: Architecture and Design of the 1960s and 1970s in Slovakia (Springer Vienna, 2007) and PPAG: Speaking Architecture (Ambra Verlag, 2014).

Novotny’s London research addresses the current challenges for social housing in London and Vienna. His topic contrasts Vienna, which boasts a history of producing high-quality, widely accessibly housing, and postwar social housing in London, which has become stigmatized and frequently condemned as “sink-estates,” ever-threatened with demolition. Novotny’s research will compare both cities’ approaches to public housing, seeking solutions for re-densifying and revitalizing existing aging housing stock.

Summer fellows


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Jose Castillo
(Mexico City)

On Food, Cooking, and the City: Learning From London

Jose Castillo is the principal of the award-winning Mexico City–based firm a|911. Cofounded by Saidee Saidell in 2002, a|911 was recently named the most visionary architecture office in Mexico by Obras magazine. Its projects include the Spanish Cultural Center (2011), Ara Iztacalco housing project (2011) García Terres Library (2012), and Elena Garro Cultural Center (2013), all in Mexico City. Castillo holds architecture degrees from the Universidad Iberoamericana and Harvard GSD, and has taught and guest-lectured at numerous universities. He has served as a juror on several competitions, including recently Bloomberg’s Philanthropies Mayor Challenge Latin America. He has curated exhibitions in New York, Sao Paulo, Rotterdam, Venice and Brussels, and is member of the editorial board of Arquine, the Deutsche Bank’s Alfred Herrhausen Society, and LSE Cities and Urban Age.

Castillo’s proposal for the Richard Rogers Fellowship extends the research he initiated as a fellow of the Mexican National Endowment for the Arts. Recognizing cooking and eating as cultural, ecological and political actions with territorial and architectural implications, Castillo will investigate the way in which food and cooking transforms cities, drawing connections between urban food economies and pressing global problems such as climate change, inequality, and migration.


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Saidee Springall
(Mexico City)

London and the Challenges of Affordable Housing

Saidee Springall is the principal of Mexico City–based firm a|911. Since cofounding the firm with Jose Castillo in 2002, a|911 has designed and built over 2,000 units of affordable housing in Mexico City, and completed infrastructure and cultural projects as well as large-scale master plans for mixed-use developments. The firm earned the Bronze Medal of the Holcim Awards for Sustainable Construction Latin America (2011), Emerging Voices Award from the Architectural League of New York (2012), and the Audi Urban Futures Award (2014). Springall trained at the Universidad Iberoamericana and Harvard GSD and is currently a fellow of the Mexican National Endowment for the Arts. She has lectured in universities throughout Mexico and the U.S., and her work has appeared in Praxis Journal, 2G, Monocle, AD, Wallpaper, New York Times, and Reforma.

Saidell will use her London residency to research affordable housing in London, focusing in particular on the “social contract” established between the state, developers, civic agencies, and citizens. Building on her previous independent research, she aims to analyze policies and financial structures, as well as new models of community participation.

Fall Fellows


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Shantel Blakely
(Cambridge, MA)

Pattern Informed by Sensibility: Herbert Read on Art and Design

Shantel Blakely holds an MArch from Princeton University, a PhD in the history and theory of architecture from Columbia University, and is currently completing an MA in Philosophy at Tufts University. She has taught courses in architectural theory and urban design at Columbia, Barnard College, and Parsons The New School of Design; most recently, she managed the public lectures and conferences program at Harvard GSD. As an independent critic and scholar, she has probed the relationship of architecture and design to ideologies of experiential practice. Her writings have appeared in PLOT, Log, AA Files, Avery Review, and Open Letters, and she has participated in a variety of exhibitions and symposia as an essayist, speaker, and advisor.

With this fellowship, Blakely returns to an intellectual project that begins with meditations on art and philosophy. The premise that “Art is both an individual good and an instrument of education,” articulated by early-20th-century English poet-educator-anarchist Herbert Read, informed a number of claims which intensified in postwar Europe, that aesthetic experiences could confront social problems. Blakely will use her London residency to study Read’s life, ideas, and intellectual milieu, with the aim of tying his ideas to those of others (including John Dewey and Charles Eames) who regarded art, as well as architecture and design, as a means to achieve social harmony.


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Dirk van den Heuvel

Socio-Plastics: Resituating New Brutalism and the British Welfare State

Dirk van den Heuvel received his PhD in architecture from TU Delft, where he teaches as an associate professor. He is the cofounder and head of the Jaap Bakema Study Centre at the Het Nieuwe Instituut in Rotterdam. Van den Heuvel was the curator of the exhibition Open: A Bakema Celebration, the official presentation of the Dutch Pavilion for the 14th International Architecture Exhibition at Venice Biennale (2014). He is an editor of the publication series DASH (Delft Architectural Studies on Housing) (nai010publishers) and the architectural theory journal Footprint. He previously served as editor of the Dutch journal OASE (1993–99). His publication credits include Architecture and the Welfare State (Routledge, 2015), Team 10: In Search of a Utopia of the Present 1953-1981 (NAi Publishers, 2005), Alison and Peter Smithson: From the House of the Future to a House of Today (010 Publishers, 2004).

Van den Heuvel will use his residency to continue his research on Alison and Peter Smithson within in the context of the postwar British welfare state. He will focus on the Smithsons’ Robin Hood Gardens estate, examining the interrelations between architecture, planning, and housing policies. He is in the final stages of preparing a book that aims to reconnect the notion of architectural invention with the urgent need for equitable and livable cities.

The Fellowship


The Fellowship is intended for individuals whose research will be enhanced by access to London’s extraordinary institutions, libraries, practices, professionals, and other unique resources. By providing the distinctive facilities of the Wimbledon House and academic support, the Richard Rogers Fellowship’s goal is to encourage in-depth investigation into a wide array of issues that are pertinent to the sustainable and equitable development and transformation of the city.

Open to accomplished professionals and scholars working in any field related to the built environment, the Richard Rogers Fellowship is dedicated to advancing research on a wide range of issues—social, economic, technological, political, environmental—that are critical to shaping the contemporary city. The fellowship is inspired by Rogers’ commitment to cross-disciplinary investigation and social engagement, evident across his prolific output as an architect, urbanist, author, and activist.

In addition to a three-month residency, winners of the Richard Rogers Fellowship will receive round-trip travel expenses to London and a $10,000 stipend.

The House


Rogers designed house in the late 1960s for his parents, Dr. William Nino and Dada Rogers. The pre-fabricated single-story dwelling features a bright yellow painted steel frame, glazed façade, and moveable partitions that allow the easy reconfiguration of the interior space. Considered one of the most important modern houses in the UK, it was granted a UK Grade II Heritage listing in 2013. Rogers has described the house as a “transparent tube with solid boundary walls,” and noted its influence on his subsequent designs of the Centre Pompidou and Lloyds of London.

British architect Philip Gumuchdjian is overseeing
the restoration of the house to its original state.

Residency terms

  • Spring
  • Summer
  • Fall

Fellows will be selected annually for three-month residencies. Lodging includes a private bedroom with a desk and a private bathroom. Residents will share the common living spaces. In the application section, candidates will be asked to indicate their preferred residency term.

Two fellows will share the residence during each term. (Due to the nature of the quarters, partners and families cannot be accommodated.)

The Fellowship is accompanied by a cash prize of $10,000 USD.

Fellows must secure their own necessary travel documents and visas. Visa requirements vary depending on the country of origin and length of stay. Individuals visiting the UK for research purposes most often require a Standard Visitor Visa. The GSD will furnish letters of invitation, if necessary.

CHECK UK VISA requirements

The Richard Rogers Fellowship is available to professionals and scholars working in fields related to The built environment,

including architects, designers, landscape architects, planners, engineers, historians, journalists, curators, economists, policymakers, environmentalist, and other related fields. The focus of the residency program is to provide support to practitioners and scholars engaged in research that addresses alternative and sustainable urban futures.


  • Applicants must demonstrate professional or research experience in a field related to the built environment, and must propose new or ongoing research that would benefit from a residency in London.
  • Preference is given to practitioners and researchers with significant academic credentials or experience in architecture, landscape architecture, urban planning or urban design, as well as applicants who propose ambitious research projects with the potential to make a significant impact on relevant fields of research or practice.
  • The Fellowship is open to applicants residing anywhere in the world.
  • Winners are expected to secure their own travel + visitor’s documents (UK requirements differ depending on the country of origin and length of stay).


Applicants will be asked to submit:

  • Current CV
  • Brief research proposal (700 words), including description of the need for a residency in London
  • Portfolio (up to 10 images or documents), including design work and/or research projects and publications
  • Three references (names and affiliations only; letters will be requested of finalists)


Selection committee


Director, LSE Cities


Eliot Noyes Professor of Architectural Theory and Associate Dean for Academic Affairs, Harvard GSD


Co-founder AKT II and Professor in Practice, Harvard GSD


Alexander and Victoria Wiley Professor of Design and Dean, Harvard GSD


Architect and Professor
in Practice, Harvard GSD


Executive Dean,
Harvard GSD


Architect and Founder, Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners


How long is the residency?

Fellows will be awarded a residency of up to three months. Harvard GSD seeks applicants who will make the most of their stay in London.

Will Harvard GSD assist me with my travel documents and visa?

Fellows are required to secure their own valid travel documents and visas; requirements vary depending on country of origin and length of stay. Harvard GSD will furnish letters of invitation, if helpful.

Are Harvard University faculty members, lecturers, and students eligible to apply?

Yes. But the competition is open to applicants anywhere in the world, and an affiliation to Harvard is not needed.

I am currently a student, am I eligible to apply?

The minimum requirement for application is a professional degree in a related design field or a graduate degree in an affiliated area, with the expectation that applicants have some level of demonstrated experience beyond their academic coursework.

Can I select my preferred residency term?

Fellows will be asked to rank their preference: Spring (February 15 to May 15), Summer (June 1 to August 31) or Fall (September 15 to December 15). The Selection Committee will try its best to assign winners to their preferred term. Flexibility is appreciated, and may improve one’s chances of being awarded a fellowship.

How many fellows will share the residence at any given time?


What can I expect from the living arrangement?

The Wimbledon property consists of two buildings—the primary residence and a smaller similar structure that was originally a pottery studio. The studio has been renovated to have two small private bedrooms, each equipped with a desk and private bathroom. Fellows will reside in the renovated studio and share the use of the main house’s kitchen and common spaces. The primary residence will host occasional events, such as lectures and symposia.

Will meals be provided?

No. The Fellowship comes with a cash award, which should help to defray some of the cost of living in London.

Can I bring my partner or family?

Due to the nature of the quarters, partners and families cannot be accommodated.

Will you consider join applications by partners/couples?

Partners/couples wishing to submit a joint proposal must apply individually. If the Selection Committee deems each individual deserving of a fellowship, the partners/couple will have the chance to share a residency term. The Wimbledon House cannot accommodate more than two residents at any given time.

What kind of administrative support might fellows expect during their residencies?

Fellows are expected be independent. They should plan to arrange their own travel and secure their own access to libraries, institutions, et cetera. Harvard GSD will help furnish any letters necessary to access special archives or institutions, if helpful.

Do I need to get letters of recommendation from my references?

You do not need to submit letters at this time. If you are selected as a finalist, we will contact your references. We strongly advise that you notify your references about your application, should they be contacted.

May I submit my application by mail?

No, all applications must be submitted via our online platform.

I am encountering problems with the online application platform, the registration fee, or having other technical difficulties.

Please email if you experience any problems with the online platform or difficulties completing your submission.

What are the obligations of the fellowship winners?

Winners of the Richard Rogers Fellowship are expected to cooperate with Harvard GSD with regards to media outreach, publications, documentation of work, participation in events, and so on. If research undertaken during a residency results in publications or exhibitions, winners must credit the Richard Rogers Fellowship. Fellows will be asked to submit a brief summary of their London work (2 to 3 pages) within six months of completing their residencies.