Kimberly Elman Zarecor PhD
158 College of Design
Ames, IA, 50011
Phone: (515) 294-5026
Office: 587 Design
PhD, Architecture, Columbia University, 2008
MArch, Columbia University, 1999
BA, Art History, University of Massachusetts, Amherst, 1996
On the Web
Since 2017, Professor Zarecor has been working on new research about quality of life in small Iowa towns. She is the Principal Investigator for a $1.5 million grant from the National Science Foundation to do research with rural Iowa communities that works to improve community services, social capital, and access to data science tools and resources so that they can protect quality of life as populations shrink. This research was inspired by her previous research on Ostrava in the Czech Republic, which is a shrinking post-industrial city. Using the concept of 'shrink-smart' from European work on this phenomenon in cities, the research breaks new ground by asking what smart shrinkage looks like in rural places.
Project website: https://ruralshrinksmart.org/
While developing the new Iowa-based research, Prof. Zarecor continues to expand her scholarship on architecture and urbanism in Eastern Europe with a focus on 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.
In her on-going work, she is looking at themes that expand from the book project into questions of socialist/Second World urbanity, communist visual culture, histories of radical leftwing political thought in architecture, and the professional culture of architectural practice in the postwar period. She was a Faculty Fulbright Research Fellow in the Czech Republic in 2011-2012, a 2013 Erasmus Mundus Fellow, and will return to Prague in Spring 2022 as an Erasmus Mundus Fellow at Charles University. 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. ISU Digital Repository: http://works.bepress.com/kimberly_zarecor/.
ORCID research profile: https://orcid.org/0000-0001-8322-4154
"Rural Smart Shrinkage and Perceptions of Quality of Life in the Midwest" in Handbook of Quality of Life and Sustainability, Socio-spatial and Multidisciplinary Perspectives, Springer International Handbooks of Quality of Life, 2021. Co-authors: K. Zarecor, D. Peters, S. Hamideh. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-50540-0_20.
"Architecture in Series: Housing and Communist Idealism." In The Oxford Handbook of Communist Visual Cultures. A. Skrodzka, X. Lu, and K. Marciniak, eds. Oxford: Oxford University Press, DOI: 10.1093/oxfordhb/9780190885533.013.2.
Passe, Ulrike, Janette Thompson, and Kimberly Zarecor, eds. 2020. SUS-RURI: Proceedings of a workshop on developing a convergence sustainable urban systems agenda for redesigning the urban-rural interface along the Mississippi River watershed held in Ames, Iowa, August 12–13, 2019. Ames, Iowa: Iowa State University Digital Press. https://doi.org/10.31274/isudp.35.
"Smart Shrinkage in Small Towns: Understanding Why Some Rural Communities Thrive as They Lose Population in The Midwestern United States." Journal of Rural Studies, vol. 64. (November 2018): 39-49. Co-authors: D. Peters, S. Hamideh, K. Zarecor, M. Ghandour. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jrurstud.2018.10.001
"The Collective House in Litvínov," "The Collective House in Zlín," & "The Collective House in Czechoslovak Architectural Culture during and after World War II." (in Czech) In To Live Together: Collective Houses in Czechoslovakia and Europe in the 20th Century. Hubert Guzik, ed. Prague: Arbor Vitae, 2019.
"Hannes Meyer's Legacy in the Czechoslovak Postwar Building Industry” (in German). In Hannes Meyer und das Bauhaus. Im Streit der Deutungen. Thomas Flierl and Philipp Oswalt, eds. Leipzig: Spector Books, 2018.
"What Was So Socialist about the Socialist City?: Second World Urbanity in Europe," Journal of Urban History, https://doi.org/10.1177/0096144217710229, first published 5 June 2017.
PUBLICATIONS IN PROGRESS:
"Prague" in Capital Cities in the Shadow of the Cold War: Planning in Eastern Europe. Emily Makaš, ed. London: Routledge, expected 2021.
NSF, Smart & Connected Communities Planning Grant, $1,516,000 (PI) - SCC-IRG Track 2: Overcoming the Rural Data Deficit to Improve Quality of Life and Community Services in Smart & Connected Small Communities
NSF, Smart & Connected Communities Planning Grant, $100,000 (PI) - "A Data-Driven Framework for Smart Decision-Making in Small and Shrinking Communities" (http://scc.design.iastate.edu)
NPR's Here and Now, Interview with Jeremy Hobson about smart shrinkage (12 Dec 2019): https://www.wbur.org/hereandnow/2019/12/16/iowa-towns-shrink-smart
Podcast: The Shrink Smart Project – Managing Population Loss in Rural Communities (7 Sept 2018): https://elgl.org/podcast-the-shrink-smart-project-managing-population-loss-in-rural-communities/
National Public Radio story about rural smart shrinkage (20 June 2018): https://www.npr.org/2018/06/19/618848050/as-rural-towns-lose-population-they-can-learn-to-shrink-smart