Dimitris Papanikolaou

Doctor of Design, Harvard GSD, 2016
M.Sc. Media Arts and Sciences, MIT Media Lab, 2011
S.M.Arch.S. Design & Computation, MIT School of Architecture & Planning, 2008
Dipl. Arch. Eng. National Technical University of Athens, 2004

News: Starting Fall 2017, I will be a tenure track Assistant Professor at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, with a joint appointment between the School of Architecture and the Department of Software and Information Systems.

I am an urban scientist, architect, and engineer, with a background in digital media and computation, and interests in social, behavioral, and learning sciences. I am currently a Postdoc at the Harvard Graduate School of Design (GSD). I hold an Doctor of Design (DDes) from Harvard GSD, an MSc in Media Arts and Sciences from the MIT Media Lab, a SMArchS in Design Computation from the MIT School of Architecture and Planning, and a professional Diploma in Architectural Engineering from the National Technical University of Athens in Greece.

My research combines data, complex systems modeling, and information technology, to analyze and design, systems and technologies for intelligent urban infrastructure and mobility systems. A central question in my work is how movements and concentrations of human, physical, and information resources shape the potential of urban systems and how novel interactive technologies and design strategies may enhance it. My methods draw on a diversity of backgrounds including complex systems modeling and simulation, data visualization, urban economics, transportation/operations research, design research, social computing, and human-computer interaction. I contribute to the fields of planning, architecture, design, engineering, and information/computer/social science, in three ways:

I have worked at Microsoft Research in Redmond (Computational User Experiences / Vibe / Lab of Things) on applications of the Internet of Things, and at the Smart Cities and Changing Places groups at the MIT Media Lab on intelligent urban environments. I teach courses on intelligent urban mobility, interactive systems, and integrative design at the Interactive Telecommunications Program (ITP) of New York University (NYU), MIT, and Harvard GSD.

I have more than eight years of extensive experience in some of the most groundbreaking research on future mobility worldwide. At the Smart Cities group of the MIT Media Lab, working with General Motors, I co-developed an intelligent sharing system of electric foldable cars with minimal parking footprint, named by TIME magazine as the best automotive invention of 2007. My research on on-demand mobility has received distinctions across disciplines including the $100K Buckminster Fuller Challenge that awards “outstanding visionary projects with the capacity to solve humanity’s most pressing problems”; the $15K Harvard’s Deans’ Design Challenge: Urban Life 2030, a university-wide contest organized by the schools of Design (GSD), Engineering (SEAS), and Business (HBS) that awarded “projects that envision order of magnitude improvements to the livability of our cities by 2030”; the $25K Harvard Kennedy School’s Meyer Transportation Award; the MIT Transportation program’s showcase award for the best research in Economics, Finance, Policy and Land Use categories; and Harvard University’s Fellowship on Energy and Environment.

I have authored more than 20 articles and book chapters in peer-reviewed conference proceedings, academic journals, and edited volumes; I have organized conference panels and exhibitions; and I have served as a scientific committee in conferences, in areas of design, digital media, and computation.
Download my Research Statement and my CV below:

Harvard GSD, 48 Quincy Street, Cambridge MA 02139
+1 857 928 1707
Curriculum Vitae
Research Statement
Design & Teaching Portfolio
May 2017
Invited Critic at final reviews at Harvard GSD, UNCC SoA, NEU SoA
Mar 2017
Accepted an offer for a tenure track Assistant Professor position at UNCC with a joint appointment between the School of Architecture and the Department of Software Information Systems
Feb 2017
Invited Talk at the Penn State University - SEDTAPP
Feb 2017
Invited Talk at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte - UNCC
Jan 2017
Invited Talk at the Michigan Institute for Data Science - MIDAS
Nov 2016
Invited Talk at Harvard GSD
Oct 2016
Presented research on HCI and Architecture at the ACADIA conference at the University of Michigan
Oct 2016
Key Note at the European Code Week in Athens, Greece
Oct 2016
Invited Talk at the Massachusetts College of Art and Design
Oct 2016
Invited Talk at the Senseable City Lab at MIT DUSP
May 2016
Invited Talk at the System Dynamics Group of the MIT Sloan School of Management
May 2016
Invited Talk at the Design Computation Group of the MIT School of Architecture and Planning
May 2016
Invited Critic at the final reviews at the Harvard GSD - Responsive Environments from Prof Allen Sayegh, and Interdisciplinary Design and Practice from Prof Hanif Kara
April 2016
Invited Talk at the Greek General Consulate in New York organized by the Greek Institute of Architects New York (GIANY)
April 2016
Presentation at the 32nd System Dynamics Colloquium at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) - Department of Social Science & Policy Studies
April 2016
Invited Talk at Dartmouth College, Studio Art Department
February 2016
Invited Talk at North Eastern University, College of Arts, Media, and Design
February 2016
Invited Talk at Harvard GSD
November 2015
Invited Talk at Dartmouth College, Computer Science Department
Oct 2015
Official launch of New Geographies 07
Jul 2015
Workshop on DIY Mechanical Assemblies at HAEF
Mar 2015
Talk at MIT on Computational Making
Mar 2015
Talk at Carnegie Mellon University on Design on Design, Media, and Computation
Jan 2015
My recent paper BodyPods was presented at TEI 2015 at Stanford Uiversity
Dec 2014
Upcoming article on the history of 18th Century's Mechanical Internet of Optical Telegraphy accepted at Harvard's New Geographies Journal
Dec 2014
Talk at the Interactive Telecommunications Program of NYU on Tangible Media and furniture design
Sep 2014
I am appointed adjunct Assistant Professor at NYU's Interctive Telecommunications Program (ITP)
Nov 2013
I was a Judge during the finalist session at the Building Global Innovators (BGI) Venture Competition of the MIT Portugal Program at the Smart Cities track
Nov 2013
I was invited as a reviewer at Skylar Tibitts' studio at MIT "Origins of Life: Architecture Design Fundamentals"
Nov 2013
I presented my research at the 27th MIT-UAlbany System Dynamics PhD colloquium
Oct 2013
I was invited as a reviewer at the Networked Urbanism design studio at Harvard GSD taught by Juse Luis Vallejo and Belinda Tato