Ph.D., Earth and Environmental Science, The Graduate Center of the City University of New York, 2016
M.A., Politics, The New School for Social Research, 2008
B.A. (Honors), Social and Historical Inquiry, Eugene Lang College, 2005
Stephanie Wakefield is an urban geographer whose work critically analyzes the technical, political, and philosophical transformations of urban life in the Anthropocene. She is Assistant Professor and Director of the Human Ecology program at Life University, where she teaches courses on urban resilience and sustainability, human-environment relations, social-ecological systems thinking, and Anthropocene strategy. Prior to joining Life, she was an Urban Studies Foundation Postdoctoral Research Fellow based at Florida International University and taught Urban and Environmental Studies for over a decade in New York, where she was a Visiting Assistant Professor of Culture and Media at The New School and an Instructor in the Department of Urban Studies and Environmental Studies program at Queens College. She is currently co-lead of the NSF-funded Florida Coastal Everglades Long-Term Ecological Research Project Human Dimensions working group.
She is the author of Anthropocene Back Loop: Experimentation in Unsafe Operating Space (Open Humanities Press, 2020) and co-editor (with David Chandler and Kevin Grove) of Resilience in the Anthropocene: Governance and Politics at the End of the World (Routledge, 2020). She is currently finishing a new book, Urbanization in the Anthropocene, which critically analyzes experimental sea rise adaptations in Miami and traces the potential of an emergent 'urbicidal Anthropocene' beyond both urban resilience and planetary urbanization.
Along with scholarly publication and teaching, she frequently works with community groups, art institutions, and nonprofits to explore experimental sustainability planning and community resilience design. Across her work her goal is to shift the center of gravity in resilience and climate change thinking away from designs that reproduce the socioeconomic status quo and toward a widespread, democratic exploration of the transformative potential of the Anthropocene.
urban resilience, sustainability, and adaptation planning
social-ecological systems thinking
Anthropocene thought and strategy
politics of climate change
biopolitics and governmentality
Chandler, D., Grove, C., and Wakefield, S. eds. (2020). Resilience in the Anthropocene: Governance and Politics at the End of the World. Abingdon: Routledge.
Wakefield, S. (2020). Anthropocene Back Loop: Experimentation in Unsafe Operating Space. London: Open Humanities Press (Critical Climate Chaos: Irreversibility Series).
PEER-REVIEWED JOURNAL ARTICLES
Wakefield, S. (2020) “Making Nature into Infrastructure: The Construction of Oysters as a Risk Management Solution in New York City.” Environment and Planning E: Nature and Space. 3(3), pp. 761–785.
Wakefield, S. (2020) “Urban Resilience as Critique: Problematizing Infrastructure in Post-Sandy New York City.” Political Geography, 79.
Wakefield, S. (2019) “Miami Beach Forever? Urbanism in the Back Loop.” Geoforum, 104. 34-44.
Wakefield, S. (2019) “Amphibious Architecture Beyond the Levee.” Mobilities 4(3).
Wakefield, S. (2018) “Infrastructures of Liberal Life: From Modernity and Progress to Resilience and Ruins,” Geography Compass, 12(7).
Wakefield, S. (2018) “Inhabiting the Anthropocene Back Loop,” Resilience: International Policies, Practices, and Discourses, 6(1).
Wakefield, S. and Braun, B. (2014) “Governing the Resilient City,” Introduction to guest edited theme section “A New Apparatus: Technology, Government and the Resilient City,” in Environment and Planning D: Society and Space 32(1) 4 – 11
Johnson, E., H. Morehouse, S. Dalby, J. Lehman, S. Nelson, R. Rowan, S. Wakefield and Yusoff, K. (2014) “After the Anthropocene: Politics and Geographic Inquiry for a New Epoch,” Progress in Human Geography, 38(3), pp. 439 – 456.
Wakefield, S. (In press) Environmental Governance in the Anthropocene. In: Chandler, D., Müller, F., and Rothe, D., eds, Forthcoming, International Relations in the Anthropocene: New Actors, New Agencies and New Approaches (textbook). London: Palgrave–Macmillan.
Wakefield, S. (2020) “Life Beyond the Liberal One World World.” In: Wakefield, S., Grove, K., and Chandler, D., eds., 2020. Resilience in the Anthropocene: Governance and Politics at the End of the World. Abingdon: Routledge.
Wakefield, S. and Braun, B. (2019) “Oystertecture: Infrastructure, Profanation and the Sacred Figure of the Human,” Hetherington, K. (ed.) Infrastructure, Environment, and Life in the Anthropocene. Durham, Duke University Press.
Braun, B. and Wakefield, S. (2018) “Destituent Power and Common Use: Reading Agamben in the Anthropocene,” Coleman, M. and Agnew, J. Geographies of Power. Athens, GA: University of Georgia Press.
SELECTED NON-PEER-REVIEWED PUBLICATIONS
Wakefield, S. (2020) “Anthropocene Hubris.” E-flux Architecture: Accumulation Series. https://www.e-flux.com/architecture/accumulation/337991/anthropocene-hubris/
Wakefield, S. (2018) “The Possibilities for New Ways of Living.” Public Seminar.
Wakefield, S. and Moreno, G. (2018) “Tools for a Thawing World.” Exhibition catalogue essay for SUPERFLEX: We Are All in the Same Boat, Museum of Art and Design, Miami Dade College.
Wakefield, S. (2017) “Field Notes from the Anthropocene: Living in the Back Loop.” The Brooklyn Rail.
Wakefield, S. (2017) “Dreaming the Back Loop,” Affidavit, June 6.
Wakefield, S. and Braun, B. (2014) “Inhabiting the Post-Apocalyptic City,” Society and Space supplementary commentary.
Wakefield, S. (2014) “Man in the Anthropocene (as portrayed by the film Gravity)” May Revue 13.
SELECTED TALKS AT UNIVERSITY AND COLLEGES
(2021) “Anthropocene Experimentation,” Strategy and Design for the Anthropocene MSc. Program, ESC Clermont, Sèvres, Lyons, France.
(2021) “Beyond Planetary Urbanization and Resilience: Urbicide and Islandization in the Anthropocene,” Trinity College Dublin, Geography Seminar Series, Dublin, Ireland.
(2020) “The Possibilities and Limits of Experimentation in the Anthropocene,” Department of Sociology, Goldsmiths, University of London, UK.
(2018) “Aqua-Urban Futures,” Design for This Century Seminar Series, Columbia University/The New School, New York, NY.
(2018) “Anticipation, Experimentation & Design in the Anthropocene: On Governing Futures of Life,” Research in Conversation Workshop, Department of Geography, Durham University, Durham, U.K.
(2018) “From Designer Sea Walls to Amphibious Architecture Beyond the Levees: Experimental Practices of Living in the Anthropocene Back Loop,” Department of Global and Sociocultural Studies SAGGSA Colloquium Series, Florida International University.
(2018) “Life in the Back Loop,” Post-Planetary Futures symposium, The New School, New York, NY.
(2017) “Into the Back Loop City,” Measuring the Anthropocene Symposium, Center for Humanities and Information, Pennsylvania State University, State College, PA.
(2020) Quoted in Le Monde Diplomatique: “’Résilience’ et gentrification, les nouveaux vices de Miami: En Floride, les riches n’auront pas les pieds dans l’eau.” English translation: “Florida’s Flooded Future: ‘Retreat While There’s Still Time.’” The Nation.
(2019) Interview: “A Conversation with Stephanie Wakefield.” DATUM: Iowa State University Journal of Architecture, 11.
(2018) Interview: “Experiments in Resilience Amid the Back Loop.” Social Design Insights Podcast 87, Curry Stone Foundation.
(2017) Interview: “Urban Geographer Stephanie Wakefield on Climate Change: ‘This could be our opportunity.'” Interview. Miami New Times. July 12.
SELECTED PUBLIC TALKS AND PANELS
(2020) “Rising Above,” FloodZone Exhibition, University of South Florida, Contemporary Art Museum, Tampa, FL.
(2019) “Tools for the Anthropocene,” Museum of Art and Design, Miami Dade College, Miami, FL.
(2019) “ARTiculating Sustainability: Resilience in the Climate Crisis?” IKT Congress, Perez Art Museum Miami, Miami, FL.
(2018) Panel on Climate Change and Miami, Sand: Amphitheater, Theater, Arena, ArtCenter/South Florida, City of Miami Beach, Miami Beach, FL.
(2017) “The Back Loop: Experimentation in the Anthropocene’s Unsafe Operating Space,” Institute of Contemporary Art Miami, Miami, FL.
SELECTED WORKSHOPS AAND OUTREACH ACTIVITIES
(2021) Miami Urban Futures Scenario Workshop, Funded by the Urban Studies Foundation, Institute of Contemporary Art Miami, Miami, FL.
(2019) Wakefield, S. and New Models, “Living in the Back Loop,” video text. https://backloop.tv/posts/living-in-the-back-loop
(2019) New Models, “Imagining Collapse” digital educational model, 221A Art and Design “Blockchains and Cultural Padlocks Digital Strategy Initiative” (June 2019).
(2018) Co-Organizer (with Nigel Clark and Kathryn Yusoff), “Living on Broken Earth.” Eugene Lang College, The New School, New York, NY;
(2012-2016) Co-founder and organizer, Ridgewood Resilience Hub, Ridgewood, Queens.
HME 101 Introduction to Human Ecology
HME 201 Impactful Careers in Human Ecology
HME 202 Earth in the 21st Century: Global Environmental Change
HME 301 Urban Sustainability and Resilience
HME 306 Community Resilience: Theory, Skills, and Practice
NSC 301 Practical Skills for Science Communication
HME 303 Environmental Politics, Planning, and Policy
HME 305 Political Economy of Nature
HME 403 Environmental Design Studio (Practicum)
HME 304 Environmental Social Movements