The Rudy Bruner Award for Urban Excellence (RBA) is a resource for practitioners, educators, and students for research, scholarship, and lifelong learning. The collection of medalists, programs, and publications generated through the RBA’s 35-year investigation into the process of placemaking provides valuable insight into the evolution of urban development and cities in America.

RBA resources are used by practitioners and faculty designing and leading educational programs for professionals and students. Interdisciplinary case studies and webinars offer insight into the practice of architecture, landscape architecture, urban design and planning, real estate development, and public policy.

The RBA’s extensive online repository includes:

RBA regularly partners with professional organizations, academic institutions, and educators to produce in-person and virtual educational programming. The University at Buffalo School of Architecture and Planning hosts the Rudy Bruner Award Digital Archive which provides access to submissions and case studies. Learn more about these partnerships and how educators are using the RBA below.


EDUCATIONAL PARTNERSHIPS

The Rudy Bruner Award (RBA) partners with local, national, and international organizations to produce educational programming for practitioners, students, and the general public.

American Institute of Architects (AIA)
RBA regularly presents sessions for the AIA Housing and Community Development Knowledge Community free webinar series (which are eligible for AIA CES continuing education credits). The two organizations partnered with the Association of Collegiate Schools of Architecture (ACSA) to produce pre-conference workshops for ACSA annual meetings in Seattle, Denver, Detroit, and Pittsburgh.

American Planning Association Ohio Chapter (APA Ohio)
Planners can earn AICP CM continuing education credits for Inspiring Design: Creating Beautiful, Just, and Resilient Places in America sessions through a partnership with American Planning Association Ohio Chapter.

Association of Architecture Organizations (AAO)
RBA collaborated with the Association of Architecture Organizations to produce the webinars Sustaining Vibrant Urban Places in a Time of Social Distancing with Chicago Architecture Center and Navigating Change with Albert and Tina Small Center for Collaborative Design at Tulane University and Detroit Collaborative Design Center at University of Detroit Mercy.

Association of Collegiate Schools of Architecture (ACSA)
Through a multi-year collaboration with the Association of Collegiate Schools of Architecture and AIA Housing and Community Development Knowledge Community, RBA co-organized and produced a series of pre-conference workshops for ACSA Annual Meetings that brought together educators and practitioners in community development. RBA partnered with ACSA to produce Learning from Practice, a webinar with educators from Boston Architectural College, Northeastern University, University at Buffalo, and University of Michigan who share how they use the RBA for teaching, research, and scholarship.

Boston Society of Landscape Architects (BSLA)
Through an ongoing partnership with Boston Society of Landscape Architects, landscape architects can earn LA CES continuing education credits for Inspiring Design: Creating Beautiful, Just, and Resilient Places in America sessions.

Harvard University
From 2002 to 2014, RBA collaborated with Harvard University Loeb Fellowship to produce 18 Bruner Loeb Forums in cities across America. The in-person convenings, hosted in partnership with local organizations, brought together experts to explore strategies for urban development. Information about the events, including programs and speakers, is available in the Bruner Loeb Forum Archive.

Northeastern University
The RBA partnered with Northeastern University School of Public Policy and Urban Affairs to curate and host Inspiring Design: Creating Beautiful, Just, and Resilient Places in America for the Spring 2021 Open Classroom. The 14-week virtual series was recorded and is available on demand.

United States Department of Housing and Urban Development
With support from a United States Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) grant, RBA and HUD representatives revisited the first 21 places awarded the RBA to evaluate and learn from their evolution over time. Findings from the process are documented in Sustaining Urban Excellence: Learning from the Rudy Bruner Award for Urban Excellence 1987-1993 published by the Bruner Foundation in 1998.

The University at Buffalo (UB)
The University at Buffalo School of Architecture and Planning hosts the Rudy Bruner Award Digital Archive. The extensive, searchable database offers access to medalist applications and case studies and hundreds of entries submitted over the course of 17 award cycles.


EDUCATOR PROFILES

Bethany Lundell Garver, AIA, NCARB
Dean and Faculty of Practice and Director of Applied Learning
Boston Architectural College

Beth leads college-wide efforts to connect education with practice through reflective assessment and experiential learning initiatives. She uses RBA case studies in her CityLab Intensive, a four-day immersive experience for all incoming graduate and undergraduate design students that begins on their first day.

 

Lily Song, PhD
Assistant Professor, Race, Social Justice & the Built Environment
Northeastern University

Lily has used RBA resources for an architecture options studio and a community development seminar at Northeastern University and a Master of Urban Planning studio at Harvard Graduate School of Design. She uses RBA case studies as applied case examples of urban design and planning principles that students may be interested in exploring in studio settings.

 

Anirban Adhya, PhD
Associate Professor, Architecture+Urban Design
Lawrence Technological University College of Architecture & Design

Anirban uses RBA case studies and readings in undergraduate and graduate architecture and urban design courses (Integrated Design Four, Advanced Design Studio, Urban Theory, and Research Methods) at Lawrence Technological University College of Architecture and Design in Detroit.

 

Kristine F. Miller, PhD
Professor, Department of Landscape Architecture
University of Minnesota College of Design

In Kristine Miller’s Introduction to Design Equity, an undergraduate course offered through the Department of Landscape Architecture at University of Minnesota College of Design, students complete equity assessments using RBA medalist case studies and Equitable Development Scorecard criteria.

 

PROGRAMS & EVENTS

Learning from Practice

This virtual session provides an introduction to the Rudy Bruner Award for Urban Excellence (RBA) and its value as a resource and tool for educators. Leaders from four schools discuss practical applications of its use for critical evaluation and scholarship, as a foundation for design education and urban planning and development practice, and as a platform for public engagement. Learning from Practice was sponsored by the RBA and hosted in partnership with the Association of Collegiate Schools of Architecture (ACSA).

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