Public Life: From Data Comes Wisdom

Wednesday, April 11, 2018 at 12:30pm to 2:00pm

MIT, Building 10, 10-485 77 Mass Ave, Cambridge

Speaker: Tara Eisenberg, Gehl Institute


What is public life and why do we measure it? Gehl Institute shares access to a suite of public life tools, which build on decades of research, at the intersection of psychology and urban design. This talk will give an overview of the systems in our city that we shape everyday unintentionally, and how we can use tools to measure our impact and capacity for change. With these in hand, we can build empathy, foster peace, and improve the everyday experience of moving through a space.


Tara Eisenberg joined The Gehl Institute in 2017 as Program Manager, to lead projects that drive the organization's mission to transform cities through prioritizing decisions about public life. 

She works collaboratively with the team to grow the organization and amplify its impact. Prior to joining Gehl, Tara worked at Rebuild by Design, an organization reimagining how communities and government work together to solve complex, urban problems. At Rebuild, Tara managed ongoing research projects, including facilitating a longitudinal survey on the longterm health effects for communities that self-select to move away from high-risk geographies. She also worked directly with cities and local NGO's to develop processes for creating more resilient building codes and educating and planning for sea level rise. Rebuild's portfolio of work focused on optimizing social, physical, and ecological benefits collectively for its proposed solutions. 

Tara is a lifelong New Yorker who received both her BS and MA degrees from NYU's Steinhardt school. Tara is passionate about environmental design and education, having worked previously in green building and sustainability. She believes driving collective action through experiential learning is key to responding to our changing climate. You can usually find Tara in Brooklyn either riding her bike to the beach or cooking vegetables for friends.


Gehl Institute, a recently formed non-profit that creates knowledge and serves as a platform to make public life a driver for design, policy, and governance, seeks an entrepreneurial, get-it-done professional to manage projects and produce compelling content that engages people, from decision-makers to the general public, on issues related to the public realm.

Department of Urban Studies & Planning
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