Holly Samuelson

Associate Professor of Architecture

On leave for Spring 2024

Holly W. Samuelson, DDes, Registered Architect

Dr. Samuelson is an Associate Professor of Architecture at the Harvard Graduate School of Design, teaching architectural technology courses. Her teaching and research focus on building design issues that impact human and environmental health. Her current projects harness advanced building simulation to investigate greenhouse gas emissions, heat vulnerability, and indoor environmental quality while considering the future of buildings in a changing electricity grid.

Samuelson has coauthored more than 40 peer-reviewed scientific papers, including a Best Paper awarded by the journal Energy and Buildings. She has coached multiple winning student teams in international design competitions. Her work has been commended twice at scholarly conferences, and she regularly gives public lectures internationally. A recognized expert in architectural technology, she has been interviewed by national and international media outlets, including the Washington Post, the BBC, the Boston Globe, and the Wall Street Journal.

Before joining Harvard, Samuelson practiced full-time as an architect (2000-2007) and sustainable design consultant (2007-2008). She earned a Doctor of Design and Master of Design with distinction from Harvard Graduate School of Design, where she was awarded the Gerald M. McCue medal. She earned a Bachelor of Architecture with honors from Carnegie Mellon and was awarded the American Institute of Architects Henry Adams Gold Medal.


2024     Women’s Health quote.Toxic Mold… Climate Change Might Be Making It Worse,” V. Pelly

2024   STAT quote. “Older adults are vulnerable in a warming climate.  Better buildings could help protect them,” A. DiCorato

2023   Washington Post cited expert. “The Inequality of Heat,” A. Gowen, N. Kommenda, S. Ducroquet, G. Anant

2023   Boston Globe quote. “Cambridge Enacts Ambitious Building Emissions Reduction Standards,” M. Ellis

2023   Boston Harvard Gazette interview. “Struggling to Design Green Buildings Amid Shifting Legal, Tech Landscape,” C. Pazzanese

2022   Urban Land: Journal of the Urban Land Institute featured academic project. “ResilentHub: A Study in Getting Office Buildings to Net Zero,” A. Gibbes, R. Peiser

2020   The Wall Street Journal video interview. “The Office Redesign Has Only Just Begun,” Falk, A.

2020   The Wall Street Journal video, cited contributor. “Ventilation is Key to Battling COVID. Here’s Why” D. Hernandez

2020   Vogue quote. “What Will Your Office Look Like After Lockdown?” Taylor, E.

2019   BBC quote. “Why indoor air quality matters to our bodies and our brains,” V. Greenwood https://www.bbc.com/worklife/article/20190724-why-indoor-air-quality-matters-to-our-bodies-and-our-brains

2018   Harvard Gazette quote. “Your building might be making you sick,” C. Walsh

2007   Architecture Boston. Featured design project: Carmax Home Office. January/February 2007.

2002   Urban Land: Journal of the Urban Land Institute. Featured design project: Carmax Home Office. “Building Green in the Woods,” W.P. Macht

2002   Boston Globe. Featured design project: Art Interactive gallery. “At this gallery viewers become part of the art,” C. McQuaid