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James Chaffers

Professor Emeritus School of Architecture and Urban Planning

  • About

    University, Dr. Chaffers completed advanced studies in Architecture at the University of Michigan. Post-doctoral studies were completed at Terman Engineering Center, Stanford University, Palo Alto, California. An international practitioner and Professor of Architecture at the University of Michigan, Dr. Chaffers' professional and academic work focuses on design links between spatial quality and human spirituality. The practical applications of Dr. Chaffer's professional/pedagogical focus is most evident in design-development consultations for indigenous art museums, cultural memorials, and urban planning/urban design projects focused on medical campus planning. In recognition of his scholarship, distinguished teaching, and professional consultations, Dr. Chaffers was recently honored as Educator of the Year of Michigan Colleges and Universities. Dr. Chaffers was also recently asked to serve as Senior Design Juror for the design of a living memorial in honor of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Guided by competition criteria co-developed by Dr. Chaffers, the winning entry for the Martin Luther King, Jr. National Memorial emerged from over 900 competitive briefs submitted by the international design community. Honoring a legacy of four decades, the M L King National Memorial will be built on the Monumental Mall in Washington, DC. Construction is scheduled for competition in June of 2007.In his academic/professional roles, Dr. Chaffers has served as Director of the University of Michigan Ph.D. Program in Architecture, Director of the Villa Corsi-Salviati Design Studio in Florence, Italy, and the Director of the Taubman College West African Studio in Accra and Kumasi, Ghana. Dr. Chaffers is the founder of two inner city design centers, a First Prize winner in the Student/Professor category of several international design competitions and the author of Spacespirit, a forthcoming text focused on issues of design quality, human communality, and ecological sustainability for a new millennium.