Ulrike Passe

Ulrike Passe

Professor, Architecture

Signature Research Areas



(515) 294-7142

Campus Office: 491 Design

Mailing Address
Architecture Department
158 College of Design
Ames, IA, 50011
Social Media


Dipl.-Ing. in Architecture at the Technical University Berlin --1990


Research Interests

Director to the ISU Center for Building Energy Research

Principal Investigator of the ISU PIIR (presidential initiative for interdisciplinary research) project: Big Data for Sustainable Cities Decision Making


My compass for research is the Passage du Nord-Ouest as taken by Michel Serres to describe the passage between the humanities and science.

Relationship of Free-flow open space, Air flow and Energy on building and urban (microclimate) scale. Sustainable Urban Systems. Integrated design and building energy performance evaluation. Materiality and construction, energy efficiency, sustainability in a critical cultural context. Energy efficiency in existing, retrofit and new buildings. I previously conducted research on the intertwining of culture, climate and nature in the work of Alvar Aalto.


Current Projects

2023: NSF SCC-IRG Track 2: A data-driven approach to designing a community-focused indoor heat emergency alert system for vulnerable residents (CommHEAT) ($1,200,000) https://www.commheat.org/

2022: Iowa Economic Development Authority (IEDA) Iowa School Ventilation and Energy Efficiency Retrofit Assessment ($199,878)

2022: NSF DISES-RCN: Developing new strategies for urban-rural systems to overcome interconnected social, environmental, and technological challenges (URSYS), Dynamics in Social and Environmental Systems Research Network Program at the National Science Foundation ($500,000). https://urban-ruralsystems.org/

2020: Thompson, J., (PI), Ganapathysubramanian, B., Zhou, Y., Liebman, M., Schwab, N., Passe, (Senior Personnel), Krejci, C, Gassmann, P., ($2,5mio), NSF INFEWS / T1: Social and biophysical models to integrate local food systems, climate dynamics, built forms, and environmental impacts in the urban FEWS nexus. Four years interdisciplinary research grant awarded with start date Jan 01. 2020. U. Passe will act as project and communications coordinator and lead all building and urban energy modeling aspects of the project. https://iowa-urbanfews.cber.iastate.edu/

2019: Ulrike Passe (PI), Janette Thompson, Kimberly Zarecor, SUS_RURI: Developing a Convergence Sustainable Urban Systems Agenda for Redesigning the Urban-Rural Interface along the Mississippi River Watershed, NSF workshop grant 07/01/2019 - 12/31/2019 over $50,000. https://sus-ruri.pubpub.org/

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