Yan Zhang is currently a graduate student / research assistant in the Changing Places Group at the MIT Media Lab. His current focus includes developing multi-media interactive city model and interface, which enable people understand and participate the urban design intuitively, and mobility simulation in complex urban environment.
Yan has a background of architecture design with a special emphasis on computational design for more than 10 years. He holds a Master of Science in Advanced Architectural Design in Columbia University. He worked an architect for two world-leading design firms, Skidmore Owings & Merrill LLP (SOM) and von Gerkan, Marg und Partner (GMP). His architecture practice includes parametric form-finding and all-phase-architectural design of Shanghai Oriental Sports Center. As an architect, he developed a strong sense of design and skills of concept sketching, 3D modeling, physical model fabrication, performance simulation, construction coordination, etc.
He also worked as a research assistant for Columbia University, Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation (GSAPP) on variety of interdisciplinary projects focusing on data visualization, optimization, complex geometry, machine learning, etc.