Western Sydney University (WSU) has appointed internationally-recognised researcher, educator and practitioner, professor Chris Knapp, as the inaugural chair of architecture within the School of Computing, Engineering and Mathematics.

Professor Knapp will officially take up his position later this month and will lead the development of a new program in architecture and urban transformation for WSU.

According to WSU deputy vice-chancellor and vice president professor Denise Kirkpatrick, (Academic), professor Knapp “brings to the Chair of Architecture position a unique skill set that intersects the fields of architecture, design, contemporary construction, and technology”.

“As a practitioner, Professor Knapp is renowned for pushing technological boundaries and working on progressive, modern projects with a social and environmental conscience,” says Kirpatrick.

“As an academic and educator, he aims to inspire the next generation of architects to imagine new possibilities for the built environment, by creating architecture underpinned by progressive values, innovative thought, and social purpose,” she says.

Professor Knapp comes out of Bond University, where he joined the Abedian School of Architecture in its inaugural year in 2011, and as acting head of the School he led the successful accreditation of the program by the Queensland Board of Architects in 2014.

“Our goal is to equip this generation with intellectual, interdisciplinary, and technical skills that will expand the range and capability of the architectural profession to transform the complex challenges of the 21st century city for the benefit of society,” he says.

Professor Knapp began his career in education as a Lecturer in Architecture at the University of Michigan (2001-2004) and holds a Bachelor of Science in Architecture from the University of Michigan; a Master of Architecture from Princeton University; and is currently a PhD Candidate with the RMIT School of Architecture and Design.

He also serves on various scientific committees including the Association of Computer-Aided Design in Architecture and the International Association for Robotic Fabrication in Architecture, Art and Design.