Harvard CAMLab

In Search for a New Architecture for New China—— Zhang Kaiji and Chinese Modern Architecture in the 1950s

Date & Time:

July 3, 2022, 9:00AM EST
July 3, 2022, 9:00PM CST


Zhang Kaiji (1912-2006), graduated from the Department of Architectural Engineering of the Central University in 1935, is one of the most outstanding Chinese architects of the second generation. In the dynamic period of political and cultural transformation, the division and collision of different ideologies contributed to Zhang Kaiji’s architectural practice. In his 71 years of profession, he synthesized different ideologies and design theories, practiced with a wide range of typologies, focused on various issues of the built environment, and elevated the professional and technical exploration to a humanistic, social and historical level.

On the occasion of the 110th anniversary of Mr. Zhang Kaiji's birth and the upcoming release of the new book "Architect Zhang Kaiji", Harvard CAMLab China Builders Project launched this Academic Symposium. This event was academically convened by Professor Jeff Cody and Professor Wu Jiang. It is an honor to invite architect Chang Yung Ho, son of Zhang Kaiji, Professor Cheng Lizhen, the author of "Architect Zhang Kaiji", Professor Lai Delin, the foreword writer of "Architect Zhang Kaiji", and many other influential scholars. Starting from this new book, we will focus on Zhang Kaiji's influence on Chinese modern architecture and urban planning, and more importantly, the underlying social, cultural and economic context in the 1950s, as well as the meaning of "New Architecture for New China" in a broader context.



Jeffrey W. CODY

Former Senior Project Specialist, Building & Sites Department, Getty Conservation Institute

WU Jiang

Former Vice-President of Tongji University
Academician of the French Academy of Architecture

Academic Convenor:

FAN Sizheng

Teaching Professor, College of Technology, Architecture and Applied Engineering, Bowling Green State University

CHENG Lizhen

Former Vice-President of Tongji University
Academician of the French Academy of Architecture


Principal Architect FCJZ
Professor of the Practice MIT

LAI Delin

Morgan Endowed Chair in Fine Arts, Department of Fine Arts, University of Louisville
Foreword Writer of Architect, ZHANG Kaiji

LI Shiqiao

Weedon Professor in Asian Architecture, Architecture + Architectural History,
Director of the PhD in the Constructed Environment Program, School of Architecture, University of Virginia



Associate in Research, Fairbank Center for Chinese Studies, Harvard University
Associate, Harvard FAS CAMLab

MIN Jiajian

Project Lead, Harvard FAS CAMLab


ZHU Ning

Researcher, Harvard FAS CAMLab



(120mins in total)

Part I Introduction 10mins

Introduction to Harvard CAMLab, Symposium, Panelists, Topic and Background
MIN Jiajian 5 mins
WU Jiang 5 mins

Part II Panel Talk 55mins

Each Convenor/Panelist will have 10 mins to address the topic with their related research.
FAN Sizheng 10 mins
CHENG Lizhen 15 mins
CHANG Yung Ho 10 mins
LAI Delin 10 mins
LI Shiqiao 10 mins

Part III Discussion and Q&A 45mins

Academic Convenors will summarize panel talks and start the discussion and the group dialogue.

Part IV Event Summary 10mins

Jeffrey CODY 10 mins

(Symposium in both Chinese and English with Simultaneous Interpreting)

This event is free to public via Zoom but advance registration is required.

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