- Position: Professor and Associate Chair
- Department: Department of Architecture
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Magda Mostafa is a professor of Design in the Architecture Department at The American University in Cairo (AUC), where she leads design studio II, which focuses on the vocabulary of contemporary Egyptian architecture. She is also currently the co-director of the UNESCO-UIA education commission and validation council, which is a global think-tank tasked with setting architectural education policies and practices as well as upholding threshold standards of excellence.
She is a design associate at the Cairo-based practice progressive architects where she specializes in autism-inclusive design. She is the author of autism ASPECTSS™ design guidelines, the world’s first research-based design framework for autism worldwide. ASPECTSS™ has been presented at the United Nations as a framework for international autism design policy, as well as showcased in lectures and keynotes at Harvard’s GSD, the National Autistic Society in the UK, Ireland’s AsIAM and the World Autism Organization. It was awarded the UIA International Research Award in 2014 and was the subject if her well-received TedTalk in 2015. Her work on autism is widely published worldwide, and she has been called “one of the world's pre-eminent researchers in autism design” by the international architectural media. To date, the ASPECTSS Design Index has informed 12 architectural, urban, and artistic projects in four countries, been a key resource for 10 policy papers, guidelines, and regulatory documents at national and regional levels and has informed the research of dozens of graduate and undergraduate students in 18 countries. Through various consultancies, ASPECTSS™ has been used to design projects spanning five continents and ranging in scale from interior classroom retrofits to urban-scale neighborhoods in Europe, the US, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Australia, and the UAE.
She has recently joined the New York-based think-tank and inclusive practice MIXDesign as a member of their MIX Neurodiversity Initiative and as part of their team as an autism expert. Their work together includes, among other topics, intersectional reflections on their ethos and areas of expertise with the architecture for the pandemic world of Covid-19, which was the subject of a recent NYTimes Magazine article.
Her other field of research looks at another form of marginalization through the study of informal settlement, and in 2015 she published the Juxtopolis© Pedagogy, a studio-based research/design methodology. The Juxtopolis© Pedagogy's resultant work has been presented and exhibited worldwide, including at Columbia University's GSAPP; Durban, South Africa; and most recently at the 2016 Venice Biennale. It is also an integral part of her studio teaching at AUC. She is co-author of the book Learning from Cairo and her Juxtopolis Pedagogy was featured in Columbia University's book series on Architecture and the City "The Arab City: Architecture and Representation" by Amale Andraos and Nora Akawi.
- Special needs and inclusive design
- Design pedagogy