Billy Fleming

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Wilks Family Director, Ian L. McHarg Center, Weitzman School of Design, University of Pennsylvania

Billy Fleming is the Wilks Family Director of the Ian L. McHarg Center in the Weitzman School of Design and a Senior Fellow with Data for Progress. He holds a bachelor of landscape architecture (University of Arkansas), master of community and regional planning (University of Texas), and a doctorate of city and regional planning (University of Pennsylvania). He is co-editor of The Adaptation Blueprint (Island Press, 2020), co-editor and co-curator of Design With Nature Now (Lincoln, 2019), co-author of the Indivisible Guide (2016), co-creator of the international consortium of scientists, librarians, and activists known as Data Refuge dedicated to preserving vital environmental data at risk of erasure during the Trump Administration, and author of Drowning America: The Nature and Politics of Adaptation (Penn Press, expected 2021). Billy’s writing has also been published in The Guardian, The Atlantic, CityLab, Dissent Magazine, Houston Chronicle, Jacobin, Landscape Journal, LA+, and Places Journal. He has been invited to deliver more than 20 international lectures on design, climate change, and policy development. He is also a Senior Fellow with Data for Progress, a think-tank based in New York. His research has been supported by grants from the Lincoln Institute for Land Policy, Pew Center for Arts and Heritage, William Penn Foundation, and by a variety of corporate sponsors in the design and building industry. Prior to joining Penn, he worked as a landscape architect, city planner, organizer, and, later, as a policy adviser in the Obama Administration’s White House Domestic Policy Council.

Expertise: Climate Change; Democracy, Populism, & Domestic Politics; Sustainability; United States; Urbanization

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