Sinead C. Mac Namara

Degree(s):

  • BA, BAI from Trinity College, University of Dublin
  • MSE PhD from Princeton University

Research interests:

  • collaborative practice in architecture and engineering
  • innovation and creativity in structural engineering education;
  • structural engineering design and structural art;
  • structural performance of shell structures.
  • community engaged and public interest design
  • design build education

Current Research:

Emerging Tools in Structural Engineering

The project Emerging Tools in Structure and Design, will focus on new and emerging design and construction methodologies that are making possible a new generation of structural form and form making. Generation and optimization software; rationalization and analysis tools; and fabrication methods, have all advanced considerably in recent years and are having huge influence on the cutting edge of collaborative practice between architecture and engineering. These tools facilitate ever more radical form making in ever more rational ways and make possible formal expressions and structural efficiencies and elegance that would have been prohibitively complex a mere handful of years ago. Although these tools are highly technical in nature, it can be argued that their development has been driven by speculative architectural design work, and that they are responding to the considerable and significant change in representation tools and construction capability in recent years.

The project will initiate a critical comparative analysis of these emerging tools. I want to trace the origin of the tools, the development, use in the design process, and ultimately the influence on contemporary design and design processes. Do these tools facilitate, or I dare say require, deeper and more rigorous collaboration between disciplinary specific technical experts and architects? How are these tools allowing for rapid testing of speculative designs? Do the tools make possible financial or material savings? In what ways do they impact the nature of the engineer/architect relationship? Does “authorship” enter into the equation? There is much to explore and

Courses taught:

  • Structures II (ARC 311/ARC 612)
  • Advanced Structural Resolution (ARC 500)
  • CEED: Community Engaged Engineering Design (ARC 500)
  • Structures and Innovation (HNR 360)
  • Engineering Mechanics: Statics (ECS221)
  • Thesis Prep (ARC 509)
  • Thesis (ARC 510)

Honors:

  • Chancellors Award for Public Engagement and Scholarship, ARC 500 Community Engaged Engineering Design Park Studio, Syracuse University, Spring 2014.
  • AIA New York State Merit Award for Mir’aj with Julie Larsen and Roger Hubeli, April 2014.
  • American Collegiate Schools of Architecture, 2014 ACSA National Design Build Educator Award for Play Perch.
  • American Institute for Architecture Students Freedom By Design, National Community Inspiration Award for Play Perch, January 2014.
  • Chancellors Award for Public Engagement and Scholarship, ARC 490 and 690 Design+Build Play Perch, Syracuse University, Spring 2013.
  • American Society for Engineering Education, St. Lawrence Division, Outstanding Teacher Award. Spring 2013.
  • Reinvent Payphones Design Challenge NYC Mayor’s Office, Selected Winner: Best Functionality, Spring 2013.
  • Best Presentation, Architectural Engineering Division, American Society for Engineering Education, Annual Conference and Exposition, Vancouver BC, June 2011.
  • Meredith Teaching Recognition Award, Syracuse University, Spring 2011.
  • Princeton E-council Award for Teaching Excellence for CEE 366, Spring 2005.

Selected Publications:

S.C. Mac Namara. L. D. Bowne. Controlled Chaos: Modeling Interdisciplinary Practice for Architecture and Engineering Students in a Real World Community Engaged Design Project. Proceedings of the American Society for Engineering Education 2015 Annual Conference and Exposition, Seattle, WA, June 2015.

S.C. Mac Namara. J. V. Dannenhoffer, Scaling Up: The Design Competition as a Tool for Teaching Statics. Proceedings of the American Society for Engineering Education St, Lawrence Division Conference, Syracuse, April 2015.

S.C. Mac Namara. L. D. Bowne. Book Chapter “Play Perch” in Green, Hidden and Above – The Most Exceptional Tree-houses. Sibylle Kramer, Author. 2015. Braun Publishing.

S.C Mac Namara, C. J. Olsen. Collaborations in Architecture and Engineering. Albeena Magazine, Saudi Arabia. March 2013.

S.C. Mac Namara, C. J. Olsen. Collaborations in Architecture and Engineering . Routledge July 2014.

S.C. Mac Namara. Expanding Expectations: A Community Service Accessible Design-Build Project as an Instigator of Curricular Change. Proceedings of the BTES Building Technology Educators Society Conference 2013 “Tectonics of Teaching” Bristol, R. I, July 2013.

S.C. Mac Namara. R. Svetz, Hidden in Plain Sight: Campus Scavenger Hunt to Teach Structures and Technology to Architects. Proceedings of the American Society for Engineering Education 2013 Annual Conference and Exposition, Atlanta, Georgia, June 2013.

S.C. Mac Namara. J. V. Dannenhoffer, First Encounters: Statics as the Gateway to Engineering Culture. Proceedings of the American Society for Engineering Education 2013 Annual Conference and Exposition, Atlanta, Georgia, June 2013.

S.C. Mac Namara. J. V. Dannenhoffer, Hands-On Learning for Statics in the Smaller Classroom and Potential Scale-Up to the Larger Lecture. Proceedings of the American Society for Engineering Education 2013 Northeast Section Conference. Norwich, VT. March 2013 .

S.C. Mac Namara. Structural Art in Contemporary Engineering Education Festschrift Billington. editors: Hines, Buonopane, & Garlock, International Network for Structural Art, Princeton 2012.

S.C. Mac Namara. Bringing Engineering into the Studio: Design Assignments for Teaching Structures to Architects. Proceedings of the American Society for Engineering Education 2012 Annual Conference and Exposition, San Antonio, Texas, June 2012

S.C. Mac Namara. Topology Optimization: The Use of Cutting Edge Numerical Methods in Teaching Structures to Architects. Proceedings of the American Society for Engineering Education 2012 Annual Conference and Exposition, San Antonio, Texas, June 2012 (abstract accepted).

S.C. Mac Namara. The Design Competition as a Tool for Teaching Statics. Proceedings of the American Society for Engineering Education 2012 Annual Conference and Exposition, San Antonio, Texas, June 2012 (abstract accepted).

C.J. Olsen, S.C. Mac Namara. In Support of Pre-Professional Relations: Guidelines for Effective Educational Collaborations between Architecture and Engineering. Proceedings of the 100th Annual ACSA Meeting, Boston MA, March 1-4, 2012.

S.C. Mac Namara, S.P. Clemence. The Value of Short Term Study Abroad for Civil Engineering Students. Proceedings of the 2011 ICEE Conference on Engineering Education, University of Ulster, Belfast, Northern Ireland, August 21-26, 2011.

C.J. Olsen, S.C. Mac Namara. The Value of Trans-disciplinary Design Education with Architects for Engineering Students. Proceedings of the 2011 ICEE Conference on Engineering Education, University of Ulster, Belfast, Northern Ireland, August 21-26, 2011.

S.C. Mac Namara. Trans-disciplinary Design Teaching for Civil Engineers and Architects – Lessons Learned and Future Plans. Proceedings of the American Society for Engineering Education 2011 Annual Conference and Exposition, Vancouver Canada, June 2011.

S.C. Mac Namara. Pedestrian Bridges – Structural Design by Masters of Architecture Students. Proceedings of the American Society for Engineering Education 2011 Annual Conference and Exposition, Vancouver Canada, June 2011.

S.C. Mac Namara. The Use of Historical Precedent in Teaching Structures to Architecture Students. Proceedings of the American Society for Engineering Education 2011 Annual Conference and Exposition, Vancouver Canada, June 2011.

S.C. Mac Namara. Are We Asking the Wrong Questions? A study of student familiarity with common textbook examples. Proceedings of the ASEE Global Colloquium on Engineering Education, Singapore, October 18-22, 2010.

S.C. Mac Namara. Statics 2.0 – Reimagining a core course for increased innovation and creativity. Proceedings of the ASEE Global Colloquium on Engineering Education, Singapore, October 18-22, 2010.

S.C. Mac Namara, C.J. Olsen, Scott L. Shablak, Carolina B. Harris. Merging Engineering and Architectural Pedagogy – A Trans-disciplinary Opportunity? Proceedings of the 2010 ICEE Conference on Engineering Education, Silesian University of Technology, Gliwice, Poland, July 18-22, 2010.

S.C. Mac Namara, C.J. Olsen, L. J. Steinberg, S.P. Clemence. Inspiring Innovation. Proceedings of the American Society for Engineering Education 2010 Annual Conference and Exposition, Louisville Kentucky, June 2010.

S.C. Mac Namara, M. Garlock, D.P. Billington. Structural Response of Nuclear Containment Shield Buildings with Construction Openings, ASCE Journal of Performance of Constructed Facilities, Vol. 21, No. 2, March/April 2007, pp. 152-156.

S.C. Mac Namara, M. Garlock. Delamination in Two Layer Thin Shell Dome with Unanticipated Construction Openings Proceedings of the 6th International Conference on Computation of Shell and Spatial Structures IASS-IACM 2008: “Spanning Nano to Mega”, John F. ABEL and J. Robert COOKE (eds.) Cornell University, Ithaca, NY, 28-31 May 2008.

S.C. Mac Namara, D.P. Billington. Delamination and the structural response of thin shell concrete in nuclear shield buildings with unanticipated construction openings. Proceedings of the 6th annual international conference on fracture mechanics of concrete and concrete structures, Catania, Italy, 17-22 June 2007.