Kimberly Elman Zarecor

Associate Professor, Architecture
Director, Design (Interdisciplinary)

Contact Information

Phone: (515) 294-5026
Office: 587 Design

Mailing Address

Architecture Department
158 College of Design
Ames, IA, 50011


Ph.D., Architecture, Columbia University, 2008  

M.Arch., Columbia University, 1999

B.A., Art History, University of Massachusetts, Amherst, 1996

On the Web

Research Interests

Professor Zarecor researches historical and contemporary architecture in the former Czechoslovakia. Her 2011 book with University of Pittsburgh Press, Manufacturing a Socialist Modernity: Housing in Czechoslovakia, 1945-1960, focuses on the intersection of architects, housing design, and the state apparatus in the early years of Communist Party rule. It follows the development and deployment of standardized mass-housing types such as the prefabricated structural panel building and examines the relationship between communism and architecture. It was awarded an honorable mention by the Czechoslovak Studies Association for the 2011-2012 Book Prize and was an official selection for the Book Pavilion at the 2014 Venice Biennale. Academia Press published a Czech translation of the book in February 2015 in the series, Šťastné zítřky.

Her new project considers the postwar development of Ostrava, a Czech industrial city with a coal and steel industry dating back to the early nineteenth-century. She was a Faculty Fulbright Research Fellow in the Czech Republic in 2011-2012 and a 2013 Erasmus Mundus Fellow in support of this research.

In addition to her book, she has published a number of journal articles, book chapters, book reviews, and other texts. A full list of publications can be found on her CV.

Current Projects

"What Was So Socialist about the Socialist City?: Second World Urbanity in Europe from Postwar Stalinism to Post-Socialist Neoliberalism," in preparation for submission to special issue, Journal of Urban History.

"Prague" in Capital Cities in the Shadow of the Cold War: Planning in Eastern Europe. E. Makaš, ed. London; New York: Routledge/Taylor & Francis, expected 2017.

Ordinary Modernism: Ostrava and Socialist Urbanism after World War II (working title). Book project on the architecture and urbanism of a Czech industrial city in the postwar period. On-going research and writing.

Supporting Files