The Annual International Berkeley Undergraduate Prize for Architectural Design Excellence 2019
Berkeley Prize 2019



Deepak K.C

Fadi Masoud is an Assistant Professor of Landscape Architecture and Urbanism at the University of Toronto's John H. Daniels Faculty of Architecture, Landscape, and Design.  Prior to joining the University of Toronto, Masoud was a Lecturer in Landscape Architecture and Urban Design at the Department of Urban Studies and Planning at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), and an affiliated faculty with the MIT Leventhal Center for Advanced Urbanism, where he co-led research and design projects on coastal urbanism, urban codes, and the Future of Suburbia. 

Masoud’s research and design work engages the landscape and its underlying systems as operational forces in shaping urbanism. His current work focuses on establishing relationships between these dynamic large-scale environmental systems, design, and the instrumentality of planning frameworks, policies, and codes. He currently serves as a member of Waterfront Toronto’s Design Review Panel, as well as a member of Resilient Toronto’s Urban Flooding Working Group.

Masoud practiced as a landscape architect and a planner at several leading firms in Canada and the United States including West8, HOK, and NAK. He holds a Bachelors of Environmental Studies from the University of Waterloo’s School of Planning, specializing in Urban Design and Urban Development, a Masters of Landscape Architecture from the University of Toronto, and a Post-Professional Master in Landscape Architecture from Harvard University’s Graduate School of Design, where he graduated with distinction. 

He is the recipient of several awards including the Fulbright Fellowship, the Heather M. Reisman Gold Medal in Design, the ASLA certificate of Honor, the Jacob Weidenman Prize, and was the 2015 recipient of the Charles E. Beverage Fellowship by the Olmsted Friends of Fairsted. Masoud’s work has also been recognized through several international competitions and was published in numerous books and journals including: Topos, Landscape World Journal, MASS Context Journal, Conservation of Architecture Journal, Out of Water: Sustaining Development in Arid Climates, Design for Flooding, and New Geographies. A forthcoming research publication of urban districts built on reclaimed land, their evolution, potentials, and impending vulnerabilities is being collected into a graphic-rich atlas and an interactive web-platform.

Masoud has recently given lectures at the National Gallery in Ottawa, Oslo School of Architecture (AHO), University of Miami, University of Pennsylvania, the 17th National Conference on Planning History, and the 9th Annual Southeast Florida Regional Climate Summit. His work has been heavily exhibited including at the National Building Museum in Washington DC, the Saint Étienne International Design Bienniale in France, Harbourfront Centre in Toronto, Trespa/Apra Design Centre in New York City, MIT, Harvard University’s Graduate School of Design, and at the Canadian Centre for Architecture.  


Rachna Khare

Youssef Nassef leads the work on adaptation to climate change under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). He possesses 29 years of experience in diplomacy and international environmental policy, and is a seconded diplomat from the Egyptian Foreign Service.

While assuming progressively higher levels of leadership at the UNFCCC, he launched and implemented a number of ongoing initiatives supporting adaptation and resilience in response to climate change. These include the inception and support for National Adaptation Plans for developing countries and National Adaptation Programmes of Action for Least Developed Countries; the Nairobi Work Programme, which is an international knowledge hub for impacts, vulnerability and adaptation; and the more recently established Warsaw International Mechanism for Loss and Damage.

Through these and other initiatives, he helped lay the foundations for strengthened policy frameworks, tools and methodologies that support the efforts of developing countries to enhance national and regional responses to the impacts of climate change. He regularly contributes his vision, insights and thought leadership to international conferences on resilience and adaptation to climate change and their nexus with sustainable development, often focusing on developing countries.

He holds a Doctoral degree in International Technology Policy and Management and a Master’s degree in International Environmental Policy from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, as well as a Master’s degree in Middle East Studies and a Bachelor’s degree in Computer Science and Physics from the American University in Cairo.


Avikal Somvanshi is an urbanologist with professional training in architecture and data science. His interest is in the intersection of cities, data and public policy in the domain of social justice and environmental governance.

Avikal has been working with New Delhi-based Centre for Science and Environment (CSE) a public interest research and advocacy organization based out of New Delhi, India since 2012. He currently manages research and advocacy for their sustainable cities initiative. He has co-authored three books and several policy papers on sustainable urbanization focusing on affordable housing, green buildings, urban air pollution, and sustainable mobility in India. His reports have been discussed in the Indian Parliament and have influenced multiple policies and environmental standards governing the Indian urban built environment. His work has been instrumental in getting Indian government to enact India's first ever regulation to manage and recycle construction and demolition waste.

In 2016-17, Avikal took sabbatical to pursue Master of Science in Applied Urban Science and Informatics from New York University as a Fulbright-Nehru Master's Fellow. As part of his capstone project he worked with Women In Need homeless shelter network in the New York City to help them improve the quality of their services delivery. The project involved wrangling and analysis of their data to develop predictive tools to helps the network administrators to better customize rehabilitation programs for their clients. The project also aimed to use data to facilitate preventive maintenance among their shelters.

Avikal also intermittently designs buildings using waste materials and engages in alternative construction practices exclusively focused on developing affordable housing modules. Most of his built work can be found in and around Pondicherry, India done in capacity of architectural design coordinator for EartHauz, an Auroville-based alternative architectural practice. One of his creations, the Ladder House, which was his office-cum-residence (2011-12) made of bamboo ladders tied to a retired trailer, was reviewed in three major national publications.

Avikal is also a member of multiple national and international committees on habitat issues including the Bureau of Indian Standards. He delivered the keynote lecture at a UN Habitat workshop on green homes in Nepal. He is also a regular commenter and contributor to national and international media outlets.

Additionally, Avikal has assisted the Environment Pollution Control Authority of the National Capital Region of Delhi on issues related to construction waste and dust as a special officer. He also severed as a co- caretaker of International House, an eco-living guesthouse in Auroville.  Avikal was a 2008 BERKELEY PRIZE Architectural Design Fellow, and currently serves on the BERKELEY PRIZE Committee.


Susan Ubbelohde is a Professor in the Department of Architecture and Associate Dean of the College of Environmental Design at University of California, Berkeley. She has degrees from Oberlin College in Urban Studies and the University of Michigan and the University of Oregon in Architecture.  Ubbelohde teaches at both the undergraduate and graduate levels, including design studios and courses on design theory, daylighting and sustainable performance.  She has  taught as a Visiting Professor at the ISTHMUS School of Architecture in Panama and the Tokyo Institute of Technology.  Ubbelohde has served on three decades of conference and publication review boards and professional design award juries, as well as delivering keynotes and invited lectures internationally.  

Ubbelohde's research is pursued through Loisos + Ubbelohde, an office of unconventional practice that brings research methods to the practice of high-performance integrated design. The firm has pioneered new methods of lighting and daylighting design and analysis; design and fabrication of light sculptures; energy conservation and thermal comfort analysis; natural ventilation analysis; and building monitoring and data visualization. L+U works with a range of significant architectural firms including Gehry Partners, Bjarke Ingles Group, Diller Scofidio & Renfro, Thomas Heatherwick Studio, SOM, HOK, Foster + Partners, and Rafael Vignoly Architects. The widely published projects are both local to California and international in location. L+U projects have received over 70 AIA awards for design and sustainability, four AIA Top Ten Green awards and include 14 LEED Platinum certifications and 6 Zero-Net-Energy buildings.  Recent research in the office has been presented at the Building Simulation Conference, Radiance International Workshop, Diva Day and LightFair.

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Blocked drains, Almora, India, 2017. Highlighting the problem of waste management and a potential threat in case of excessive rainfall. Photo credit: Neelakshi Joshi

The Bullitt Center, Seattle, USA., 2013. The Bullitt Center is one of the greenest commercial buildings in the world.  It is also the first urban infill projects to pursue and to receive a "Living Building" certification from the Interational Living Future Institute. The roof "prow" allows for an extended array of photovoltaic panels allowing the building to produce more electricity then it uses. Architect: Miller Hull. Photo credit: Brad Kahn (;

The Bullitt Center, Seattle, USA. Designed to have a 250-year lifespan, the building was also constucted without the use of common toxic building materials. It was the first mass timber building constructed in Seattle in 80 years.  Photo credit: Brad Kahn (;

The Bullitt Center, Seattle, USA. The rooftop solar panel array. The building also features an onsite rainwater-to-potable water system, an onsite composting toilet system, and 26 geothermal wells extending 120 m (400 feet) into he ground that help heat the building in the winter and cool it in summer.  Photo credit: Brad Kahn (;

Soso House, Leh, India. Designed and built by: Sonam Wangchuck and Neelakshi Joshi, 2016. Combining local earth and solar resources to address housing needs in a cold desert region. Photo credit: Neelakshi Joshi.

Flux.Land is a geospatial risk and planning platform developed for Broward County, Florida by the University of Toronto's Daniels Faculty + MIT Urban Risk Lab. The Platform helps visualize various distinct elements of the built and natural environment, land use code and policy, in relation to climate risk and vulnerabilities. Image courtesy of Fadi Masoud.  (

Flux.Land, Broward County, Florida, USA. "Our goal is to design and develop a web-based tool for Broward County to understand the potential adaptability of the urban fabric to manage the dynamic hydrological condition in the face of increased vulnerability due to climate change."  Image courtesy of Fadi Masoud. (

Housing Project, Auroville, India.  Building designed and built by: Auroville Earth Institute, 2012. A 17-unit housing project built using compressed earth blocks. An example of low cost and low carbon footprint housing. Photo credit: Neelakshi Joshi

The Floating Village, Kompong Khleang, Cambodia. This village is a striking example of vernacular flood adaptation, and potentially a model for low-lying areas where climate change is resulting in increased flooding. Photo credit: Yohann Legrand. (

The Floating Village, Kompong Khleang, Cambodia. This fishing village sits on the Tonle Sap Lake that historically rises as much as five-fold during the rainy season. Houses are built both on stilts and as floating habitats. Photo credit: Yohann Legrand. (

Old City of Shibam, Yemen. This 16th century city of towers in the Wadi is an outstanding example of density and natural climate control. The city is on the United Nations World Heritage Danger List. Built of mud and located in a flood prone area, the city "remains at severe risk of major damage unless necessary preventive measures are taken...[involving] the conservation and use of Shibam oases, which are considered as the buffer zone of the property." Photo credit: Will De Freitas. (

Old City of Shibam, Yemen. From the World Heritage listing: "Abandonment of the old agricultural flood management system in the wadi, the overloading of the traditional sanitary systems by the introduction of modern water supply combined with inadequate drainage, together with changes in the livestock management have all contributed to the decay of the city." Photo credit: Twiga_Swala

Water Tank, Rweru Green Village, Rwanda, 2016. Rwanda's Green Fund invested in Rweru Green Village by providing water tanks, including this one which is connected to mains water to serve the community in times of drought. Photo Credit: Rwanda Green. (

Boston’s Resiliency Districts, Boston, Massachusetts, USA. The Norman B. Leventhal Center for Advanced Urbanism at MIT introduced a working concept of “resilient districts” for urban areas that are vulnerable to climate impacts. Resilient Districts include four central tenets 1) protecting critical infrastructure, 2) thickening regional soft systems, 3) transferring density to less vulnerable areas, and 4) encouraging landscape-based land uses in low laying areas. Image courtesy of Fadi Masoud. (

Shallow Dome Residence, Kalyani (near Kolkata), India. Designed by: Laurent Fournier. This is a unique example where a formal architectural project has incorporated incredible innovations taking place outside the professional world to help improve environmental performance of formal construction industry. "Shallow dome roofing" developed by informal masons from a village in northern India have made it possible to reduce use of steel and cement in building construction lowering its carbon footprint. Photo credit: Avikal Somvanshi

Rainwater tank, Jalna, India.  Designed by and built by: Neelakshi Joshi, 2018. Preparing for water variability by enabling houses to be water sufficient. Photo credit: Neelakshi Joshi.

Ladder House, Auroville, India. Designed and built by: Avikal Somvanshi and Manu Gopalan, 2012. A fast-track eco-friendly dis-mountable housing prototype that can be used to provide semi-temporary housing post-natural disaster in tropical regions. Built by unskilled volunteers using bamboo ladders, coconut-coir ropes and recycled tetrapak sheets on a retired tracker-trolley the structure has been use since. Photo credit: Avikal Somvanshi.

Bing Image Search: "Climate resilient architecture"

Hunnarshala Foundation Office, Bhuj, Gujarat, India. Designed and built by: Sandeep Virmani and Kiran Vaghela. The campus is living laboratory of innovation and experiments with traditional building techniques and modern lifestyle requirements. The campus is splattered with examples how age-old construction practices can be brought to speed and help address the resource and resilience issues especially in rural areas. Photo credit: Avikal Somvanshi.

Understanding community perceptions and preparations for a variable climate, 2017. Fieldwork conducted in emergent urban settlements of the Himalayas. Photo credit: Neelakshi Joshi.

Google Image Search: "Architecture and climate resistant buildings"

Condominium 1 at the Sea Ranch, California, USA. Designed by: Donlyn Lyndon,. A wind-protected courtyard. Photo credit: Donlyn Lyndon.

The Bowsprit House at the Sea Ranch, CA, USA.  Designed by: Donlyn Lyndon FAIA, with Tomas Frank and Associates, Architects.  Wind-sheltered courtyard with tower to gather light into the rooms of the house from all directions, and shading for south facing windows in the living spaces.  Photo credit: Donlyn Lyndon.

Flickr Image Search: "Climate resilient architecture"

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