About Dr. Emami
Niloufar Emami, Ph.D., LEED GA, is a researcher, educator, and designer looking for gaps, intersections, and overlaps between architecture and multiple disciplines using computational tools and fabrication techniques to provide creative yet performative solutions. Niloufar holds a Ph.D. in Architecture with a major in Building technology from the University of Michigan, a post-professional Master of Science in Architecture from the University of Michigan, a Master of Architecture from Iran University of Science and Technology, and a Bachelor of Architecture.
Emami has established Digital Technologies in Architecture (DiTA) Research Lab at Illinois School of Architecture where she’s leading graduate and undergraduate students. Her interdisciplinary research focuses on three areas:
- Computational, performance-based design regarding structure, material, and daylighting performance.
- Digital fabrication of innovative building components in facades and structures using additive manufacturing,
- Critical evaluation of computational infrastructures in regards to social, political, and environmental entanglements.
Emami previously held an assistant professor of Architecture at LSU School of Architecture. She interrogated design and assembly reciprocities of topological interlocking modules fabricated through 3D printing, supported by A. Hays Town Professorship, and recognized by ARCC Research Incentive Award. The research is published in numerous articles such as Technology | Architecture + Design. Finally, in Spring 2020, she chaired and ran “Virtual Frictions,” a three-day all-school workshop on digital design and fabrication. The workshop effectively exposed LSU students to cutting-edge design and fabrication methods currently employed in the field, affording them a broader understanding of the significance of these techniques in today’s design practices.
Emami is a designer at various scales: she designs research, computational workflows, curriculum plans, products, and buildings. Followed by several years of practice as an architect in Iran at Zhair Firm, she has conducted research not only in academia, but also in industry. She has worked at Autodesk Inc. where she collaborated on a research project for developing a pioneering software platform named Project Quantum that aims to facilitate interoperability towards better connecting design, engineering, and fabrication.
Emami is the recipient of numerous awards for her research and teaching activities, namely Levenick iSEE Teaching Sustainability Fellowship at University of Illinois, the Tiger Athletic Foundation Undergraduate Teaching Award at LSU, Barbour Scholarship, and the Helen Wu Award at the University at the Michigan, and the first runner-up award in DIVA Day competition among other honors.
- Ph.D., Architecture, University of Michigan (2018)
- Master of Science in Architecture Design and Research, University of Michigan (2015)
- Master of Architecture, Iran University of Science and Technology (2011)
Research and publications
2021 Emami, Niloufar. “Molding Liquid Stone: A computational and experimental mixed method study of 3D print formwork for interlocking concrete modules.” Technology I Architecture + Design (TAD): Open. vol. 5, no.2.
2021 Emami, Niloufar. “Volumetric Envelopes: Precast elements in building envelopes.” at Building Technology Educators Society Conference (BTES); Out of Bounds: Crossing Disciplines in Teaching Technology, Auburn University, virtual conference.
2021 Theisen, Tanner; Emami, Niloufar. “Design and Fabrication of Façade Panel Systems with Additive Manufacturing.” Architectural Research Centers Consortium (ARCC), Tucson, AZ, virtual conference.
2020 Emami, Niloufar. “Disregarded design spaces: a proposed approach to draw connections between computationally generated solution spaces and actual built case studies.” International Journal of Architectural Computing (IJAC), SAGE Publications.
2020 Emami, Niloufar; Giles, Harry; von Buelow, Peter. “Structural, daylighting, and energy performance of perforated concrete shell structures.” Automation in Construction, vol. 117, p. 103249
2020 Emami, Niloufar. “Parametric design and structural performance assessment of a topologically interlocked arch,” at Symposium on Simulation in Architecture + Urban Design (SimAUD), virtual conference.
2020 Emami, Niloufar. Holmquist, Paul, “Cast stereotomy: a material-based investigation of stereotomic modules.” at 108th ACSA Annual Meeting, OPEN: Reinvented Annual Meeting, virtual conference.
2019 Emami, Niloufar. “Untangling parameters: a formalized framework for identifying overlapping design parameters between two disciplines for creating an interdisciplinary parametric model.” Journal of Advanced Engineering Informatics, vol. 42, p. 100943.