Michael Moynihan’s research focuses on the global history of housing during the cold war/development era and broader questions about politics, technology, and expertise in architectural practice. His current research project, Aggregative Expertise: A Global History of Housing, Information Science, and the Deprofessionalization of the Architect, 1973-82, demonstrates that in the 1970s, expertise related to housing shifted from professional architects to aggregate experts working in entrepreneurial/consultancy groups, governmental research institutions, and international development aid agencies. Tracing this shift in expertise offers a new understanding of the role of international organizations in architecture; the soft imperialism of information systems on “developing countries” during the development era; changes to the practice and education of architects in the 1970s; and the complex ambitions of the emerging field of human settlements.
His research has received awards from the Graham Foundation, the Canadian Centre for Architecture, the Society of Architectural Historians, the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, and the Clarence S. Stein Institute for Urban and Landscape Studies. Before coming to Syracuse, he taught in the architecture department at Cornell University and received a master’s degree from The Bartlett, University College London.