The R+D Awards celebrate investigations at the forefront of architectural technology. From the program’s inception in 2007, and never more so than with this year’s crop of winners, it has been clear that innovation at its most profound encompasses not only invention, but also rediscovery, refinement, and simplification.

This year’s jury chose nine projects, some definitively high-tech, such as a 3D-printed net-zero house, and others resoundingly low-tech, such as a CMU-curing kiln powered by direct sunlight (meaning no photovoltaics, thank you very much). Considered as a whole, the jury’s selection affirms the industry’s brilliant diversity of approaches, and its capacity to make the world a better place. Take a look at the winners below to learn how.


Phillip Bernstein, FAIA

Erin Besler

Mimi Hoang, AIA

Phillip Bernstein, FAIA, is a lecturer in Professional Practice at the Yale School of Architecture and the former vice president of strategic industry relations at Autodesk. Prior to his position at Autodesk, Bernstein was an associate principal at Pelli Clarke Pelli Architects. He is currently a senior fellow of the Design Futures Council and has served as the chair of the AIA National Contract Documents Committee.


Erin Besler, is a principal and co-founder of the Los Angeles–based interdisciplinary architecture and design studio Besler & Sons. In 2015, the firm was a finalist for the MoMA PS1 Young Architects Program, and invited to participate in the inaugural Chicago Architecture Biennale. Besler is currently a faculty member at University of California, Los Angeles, in the Department of Architecture and Urban Design, where she was a teaching fellow from 2013 to 2014.


Mimi Hoang, AIA, is a principal and co-founder of Brooklyn, N.Y.–based firm nArchitects and an adjunct professor at the Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation at Columbia University. In 2016, her firm was awarded an American Academy of Arts and Letters Award in Architecture and the AIA New York’ Andrew J. Thompson Award for Pioneering in Housing.