Stefan Al is a Dutch architect, urban designer, author, and educator.

As a designer he contributes to a number of mixed-use and transit-oriented developments, master plans, and high-rise towers across the world. One of his projects, the 600-meter tall Canton Tower, briefly held the title of the world's tallest tower. In addition, he has served in various capacities to major institutions, such as the World Heritage Center of UNESCO, working on the preservation of world heritage in Latin America, the Hong Kong government, consulting on the development of the city’s harbor and external lighting guidelines, the Chinese government, advising on new urban design guidelines, and to the United Nations High-Level Political Forum on Sustainable Development, serving as an expert on compact city design.

In his research, Stefan aims to understand trends in smart cities, climate resilience design, and retail and hospitality design. He co-authored the book Beyond Mobility, named by the Journal of Planning Education and Research “a remarkable contribution… a new urban planning and design framework to meet the needs of the new century.” His latest research is focused on designing more resilient cities, most notably in his book Adapting Cities to Sea Level Rise. His recent book The Strip: Las Vegas and the Architecture of the American Dream (The MIT Press) investigates the city’s experiments with architecture and was named by The Wall Street Journal as “best books to read.”  He is acclaimed for his work on Asian urbanism with books investigating China’s informal settlements and Hong Kong’s compact urban form, including Factory Towns of South China, Mall CityMacau and the Casino Complex, and Villages in the City, which was selected by Architectural Record as "one of the best" books on informal urbanism. Besides his academic publications, his work has been featured in museum exhibitions and media outlets including The Guardian, NPR, and Marketplace.

Over the years, Stefan has directed the urban design programs at the University of Hong Kong and the University of Pennsylvania, where he co-taught an online course, Designing Cities, with more than 70,000 students. He currently is a visiting professor at Tongji University in Shanghai and Pratt Institute in New York.

Stefan frequently gives keynote speeches and presentations to audiences ranging from architects to business executives to non profit organizations. He holds a doctorate in City and Regional Planning from UC Berkeley, an M.Arch. from The Bartlett, and an M.Sc. in Architecture with distinction from Delft University of Technology. He is an EU-licensed architect and a LEED Accredited Professional. He is a native of the Netherlands and a 2018 TED Resident..

Founding Member, Hong Kong Institute of Urban Design
Member, American Planning Association
Fellow, Urban Design Forum
Member, Urban Land Institute
Member, Royal Institute of Dutch Architects
Member, Architectural Association
Fellow, Penn Institute of Urban Research
LEED Accredited Professional, U.S. Green Building Council

Ph.D. University of California, Berkeley, City and Regional Planning
M.Arch. University College London, Architecture, Graduated with Merit
M.Sc. Delft University of Technology, Architecture, Graduated with Distinction
ETSAB Barcelona School of Architecture, Architecture, Erasmus Program

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