- Massachusetts Institute of Technology
- Columbia University
- Harvard University
- Women & gender, politics of gender, cross-cultural relations and transnational (design) practice in postwar architecture (with an emphasis on feminist encounters between the US and Turkish architecture through a specific research problem and the time period)..
Secondary Academic Research Fields.
- Theory, (modern) history and sociology of the architecture profession, architectural (design) practice, architectural partnerships in professional practice, architectural design practitioner-client relations in the postwar period.
Following introduction taken from meralekincioglu.com
“With my editorial and architectural background on modern Turkey along with my scholarly perspective, I also conducted an extensive project on “Arkitekt”, the leading professional architectural journal published in modern Turkey (1931-1981) for Avery Index to Architectural Periodicals at Columbia University while conducting my Ph.D. dissertation research at that academic institution in 2008-2009. Entering 50 years of architectural data (1931-1981) from modern and contemporary Turkish architecture, editors, architectural historians, critics, practitioners, etc., my contribution to Avery Index to Architectural Periodical was to support scholarly research on alternative modern and contemporary architectural examples in relation to my native country and its unique architectural culture in between East and West.
In order to bring into focus the creative potential of diversity and multicultural perspective as related to immigrant architects and underrepresented communities in the U.S. architecture, I conducted two short documentary films relevant to my expertise field and a short architectural film in 2016 and 2017. Those film projects aim to indicate the lack of undocumented backgrounds of women and gender in the U.S. architecture education, and practice. Produced by the Turkish-American TV (producer Hurriyet Aydin Ok, Ph.D.), those films are based on my scholarly, architectural and archival research studies, texts, editorial reviews and were aired in the U.S. in 2016 and in 2017.*
I received my Bachelor and Master degrees in Architecture from Istanbul Technical University. Following my education, I maintained productive dialogs and collaboration with Turkish academia by promoting critical discussion platforms to re-evaluate existing curriculums and the academic agenda. In relation to my master thesis (1996), I took the first step with Prof. Dr. Safak Ural at the Department of Philosophy at Istanbul University to organize “Architecture and Philosophy I”, national symposium which offered a rich academic platform to discuss the influence of philosophy on architecture through the extensive participation of philosophers, professors and practitioners in Turkish architecture. Bringing together professors, scholars, critics in Turkish architecture and in the field of philosophy, I served as its organizing committee member and delivered my published presentation (2001). Considering its success and positive feedbacks, this academic event turned into a national symposium series organized under various philosophy-architecture themes. Prior to Istanbul Technical University, I pursued my education at the Erenkoy Girls High School founded in Istanbul in 1911 and one of the oldest surviving girls’ high schools in modern Turkey.
In Istanbul, I taught advanced architectural design studio and various courses related to the history, theory and discourse of 20th century modern and contemporary architecture and its practice at the Yeditepe University, Department of Architecture. Established in 1996, Yeditepe University is one of the well-known foundation universities in the Republic of Turkey. All courses by the Department of Architecture are offered in English and the university is a signatory to Student Exchange Protocols with over 30 universities in the United States.
In the end of the 1990s, I began to work as the architectural journalist and the editor in Istanbul. As the architectural journalis, the foreign affairs representative and co-founding managing editor at several architectural journals of Turkey (Tasarim in 1996; Arredamento Mimarlik in 1999-2001; PORTFOLYO in 2002-2005), I established nurturing and communicative dialog with academia, professionals and design practitioners in Turkish and world/global architecture. Having numerous published articles, interviews, translations, my 19 editorial monographs are available at leading academic libraries in the U.S., such as at the Avery Architectural and Fine Arts Library of Columbia University, the Frances Loeb Library of the Harvard University Graduate School of Design and the Rotch Library of Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Architecture & Planning. As the general publishing coordinator and architectural journalist, I always put my readers’ learning needs at the forefront of my investigative journalism through my highly informed research and writings. In addition, as a professional practitioner in architecture, I worked for various architectural offices and firms in Istanbul in the 1990s. In 1996, my graduation project was nominated as the award candidate at the Fifth National Architecture Awards organized by the Chamber of Architects of Turkey, and I partipated in the Fifth National Architecture Awards Exhibition with this project. .I am member of the Middle East Studies Association (MESA) of North America (2020-present; 2017-2018); Association for Middle East Women’s Studies (AMEWS) (2020-present); Society of American Archivist (2019-2020); the Society of Architectural Historians (SAH) (2018-2019; 2014-2015), Northeast Modern Language Association (2020-present); Friend of Boston Society of Architects (2015-present); World Architecture Community (honorary member) (2018-present); Harvard Neighbors (2006-present); the MIT’s Women League (2014-present) and the MIT Women Chorale (2006-2007). .In addition to my scholarly studies and projects in architecture, my another mission is to support creative artistic, cultural events and inclusive approach in architecture, academia and society in various ways: I volunteered for the organization of KidsBuild! held at Boston Society of Architects space (2019), the 25th Harvard Arts First Festival (2017), the Common Boston Festival by Boston Society of Architects Foundation (2017), was a singer at the MIT’s Women Chorale (2006-2007), organized two piano recitals by Gulsin Onay (a world-renowned Turkish woman virtuoso in Western classical music and the soloist of the Presidential Symphony in Ankara) at MIT and Harvard University (in collaboration with the MIT-Turkish Student Association and the Harvard-College-Turkish Student Association in 2015), have been playing my acoustic guitar (Fender) and singing to support local artists in Cambridge-Boston, and for elders in collaboration with an organization in Boston, and took a part of Mayor Marty Walsh’s campaign to support his agenda on equity and inclusion for the social and cultural progress of Boston. .
As a contributor of SAHARA, a digital image archive developed by the Society of Architectural Historians in collaboration with Artstor and funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, architectural photography is my deep-interest. In addition, I am a fanatic appreciator of some electro/acoustic guitarists and bass players (in jazz, jazz-rock/fusion and progressive rock, like Stanley Clarke, Marcus Miller, Eberhard Weber, Dave Holland, Mike Stern, Kurt Rosenwinkel, John McLaughlin, and Robert Fripp), and singing with my acoustic guitar (lead vocal in alternative and folk rock as the rhythm guitar) is one of the deepest ways for me to connect with my inner-self and establish a creative dialog with people.”