Christopher Alexander

Christopher Alexander, Seaside Fellow.  1994 Seaside Prize Winner

Christopher Alexander, Seaside Fellow.

1994 Seaside Prize Winner

Christopher Alexander is Professor in the Graduate School and Emeritus Professor of Architecture at the University of California, Berkeley.

He is the father of the Pattern Language movement in computer science, and A Pattern Language, a seminal work that was perhaps the first complete book ever written in hypertext fashion.

He has designed and built more than two hundred buildings on five continents: many of these buildings lay the ground work of a new form of architecture, which looks far into the future, yet has roots in ancient traditions. Much of his work has been based on inventions in technology, including concrete, shell design, and contracting procedures needed to attain a living architecture.

He was the founder of the Center for Environmental Structure in 1967, and remains President of that Company until today. In 2000, he founded, and is Chairman of the Board. He has been a consultant to city, county, and national governments on every continent, has advised corporations, government agencies, and architects and planners throughout the world.

Alexander was elected fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 1996, is a fellow of the Swedish Royal Society, has been the recipient of innumerable architectural prizes and honors including the gold medal for research of the American Institute of Architects, awarded in 1970.

He was born in Vienna, Austria in 1936. He was raised in England, and holds a Master's Degree in Mathematics and a Bachelor's degree in Architecture from Cambridge University, and a PhD in Architecture from Harvard University. In 1958 he moved to the United States, and has lived in Berkeley, California from 1963 until the present.

"In looking deeply at systems in nature and society, and at human aspirations and needs and in challenging us to understand that improved methodologies for urban design are not enough, Christopher Alexander is asking us to keep the eye on the prize: the creation of enduring, organic places that can grow and deepen in complexity and character over time."

Hank Dittmar, Chairman of the Board, Congress for the New Urbanism