Northrop Professor, Distinguished Global Professor
Ph.D., Design, University of Minnesota
M.S., Urban Development and Management, Carnegie Mellon University
B.Arch., Carnegie Mellon University
My scholarship builds on interdisciplinary partnerships and community engagement to explore how design can be leveraged for innovation and change to create communities where everyone can thrive, including:
- Refugees, immigrants, indigenous, and African American communities.
- Sexually exploited youth, and
- Children with mental health challenges.
Kontea's Memorial for Missing and Murdered
TEDxMinneapolis: How kitchen tables affect our ability to thrive
The Right to Home—Exploring How Space, Culture, and Identity Intersect with Disparities
Hadjiyanni, T. (2019). The Right to Home—Exploring How Space, Culture, and Identity Intersect with Disparities. New York, NY: Palgrave Macmillan.
This book uses stories from Hmong, Somali, Mexicans, Ojibwe, and African Americans in Minnesota to explore how the spatial characteristics of homes can support or suppress peoples’ attempts to create meaning in their lives.
Design + Disparities
The Making of a Refugee—Children Adopting Refugee Identity in Cyprus
Hadjiyanni, T. (2002). The Making of a Refugee—Children Adopting Refugee Identity in Cyprus. Westport, CT: Praeger Publishers.
Through an examination of interviews provided by 100 children of refugees in Cyprus, born after their family's displacement, this book illustrates the formation of a refugee consciousness, an identity adopted by many children who never experienced the actual displacement of their family.
Other Design + Disparities Publications
- Hadjiyanni, T. (2015). Transbodied spaces - The home experiences of undocumented Mexicans in Minnesota. Space and Culture, 18(1), 81–97.
- Strickland, A., & Hadjiyanni, T. (2013). "My school and me" – Exploring the intersections of insideness and interior environments. Journal of Interior Design, 38(4), 17–35.
- Hadjiyanni, T., Hirani, A., & Jordan, C. (2012). Toward culturally sensitive housing – Eliminating health disparities by accounting for health. Housing & Society, 9(2), 149–165.
- Hadjiyanni, T., & Helle, K. (2010). (Im)materiality and practice – Craft making as a medium for reconstructing Ojibwe identity in domestic spaces. Home Cultures, 7 (1), 57–86.
- Vahaji, S., & Hadjiyanni, T. (2009). The spatiality of veiling – Muslim women living in Minnesota homes. International Journal of Architectural Research, 3(2), 35–50.
- Hadjiyanni, T., & Helle, K. (2009). Re/claiming the past – Constructing Ojibwe identity in Minnesota homes. Design Studies, 30(4), 462–481.
- Hadjiyanni, T. (2009). The aesthetics of displacement – Hmong, Somali, and Mexican home-making practices in Minnesota. International Journal of Consumer Studies - Special issue on Consumer Issues in Housing, 33, 541–549.
- Hadjiyanni, T. (2007). Bounded choices – Somali women constructing difference in Minnesota housing. Journal of Interior Design, 32(2), 17–27.
Design + Sexual Exploitation
My work in the Design + Sexual Exploitation arena is founded on the premise that, as a medium for social justice, design can be the catalyst in the formation of collaborations and synergies that can curtail modern day slavery by inspiring action, raising public consciousness, and creating design interventions that support the needs of victims and communities.
This website shares resources and examples of how design can be used in the fight against trafficking—from architecture to clothing and graphic design.
This is a photography exhibit that provides a forum for places associated with trafficking to tell their story: from places where victims are recruited to places used by purchasers to meet victims, places used by law enforcement to stop trafficking, and places where victims can transition.
The Design Guidelines for transition housing we developed support the needs of all victims, regardless of background, and can be used for awareness, fundraising, and planning. As estimates point to 60-80% of sexually exploited youth being Native, Native needs are pulled out and separated. The Guidelines contribute to the No Wrong Door model’s recommendation to “Ensure access to safe and supportive housing” for all sexually exploited youth.
Additional Design + Sex Trafficking Publications
- Hadjiyanni, T., & Johnson, K. (2018). Dress and place in sex work – Attracting customers through virtual environments. In Annette Lynch & Katalin Medvedev (Eds), Fashion, sex and power: Performing agency, following script. New York, NY: Bloomsbury, pp.17–185.
- Hadjiyanni, T., Povlitzki, M., & Preble, H. (2014). The placeness of sex trafficking – Instilling consciousness through Minnesota’s experience. Journal of Interior Design Special Issue on Interior Design Collaboration, 39(1), 1–16.
Design + Mental Health
This NSF-funded study is a collaboration between the College of Design, College of Science and Engineering, and the Medical School that explores how environmental parameters intersect with mental health. Helping reveal insights that could remain hidden through conventional methods and approaches, the study challenges how mental health is understood and studied and expands tools for early diagnosis and treatment.
- Hadjiyanni, T., Robinson, J., Young, A., & Bernstein, G. (2015). Obsessive Compulsive Disorder – Infusing person-environment questions in studies of mental health. Invited for a Special Session at EDRA 46, Los Angeles, May 27–31.
- Bernstein, G. A., Hadjiyanni, T., Cullen, K. R., Robinson, J. W., Harris, E. C., Young, A., Fasching, J., Walczak, N., Lee, S., Morellas, V., & Papanikolopoulos, N. (2016). Use of computer vision tools to identify behavioral markers of pediatric OCD: A pilot study. Journal of Child and Adolescent Psychopharmacology. Listed as a High Impact Article.
Resources on Racial & Social Justice
- Hadjiyanni, T. (2020). Reflecting on community-engaged research in the post-pandemic and post-protest era. Palgrave Macmillan Social Science Matters.
- Hadjiyanni, T. (2020). Decolonizing interior design education. Journal of Interior Design, 45(2), 3-9.
- Hadjiyanni, T. Why I believe in Minneapolis. MinnPost, June 22, 2020.
- Hadjiyanni, T. Moving from "cancel culture" to "consider culture" - Times Higher Education Student Success Forum, session on “Universities as engines of social empowerment”
- Landscapes of Hope—A digital map with over 200 buildings impacted by the protests in the Twin Cities
My interdisciplinary and community-engaged pedagogies aim to nurture global citizens by sharpening students’ understanding of the factors that can impact the creation of Culturally Enriched Communities and the role design can play in the process.
DES 4165-5165: Design and Globalization
The Mapping Resilience Project shares digital stories made by students that highlight examples of places in the Greater MSP region that support the creation of Culturally Enriched Communities: healthy and connected communities in which everyone can thrive. You can search for stories by group or type of place.
IDES 3162: European Influences on American Interiors and Furnishings - 1750–Present
- 2013 Council for Interior Design Accreditation (CIDA) Innovative Interior Design Education Award – Merit - Sketching in interior design history class
- Hadjiyanni, T. & Zollinger, S. (2013). Writing in Design Thinking – Deconstructing the question of Being. International Journal of Architectural Research, 7(1), 116–127.
IDES 3605: Interior Design Studio V
Students design residential environments that support diverse ways of living and meaning-making to create communities in which everyone can thrive.
- Hadjiyanni, T. (2014). Beginning with concept – Deconstructing the complexity of “culture” through art in design education. International Journal of Education Through Art, 10(1), 23–39.
- Hadjiyanni, T. (2013). Rethinking culture in interior design pedagogy – The potential beyond CIDA Standard 2g. Journal of Interior Design, 38(3), v-xii.
- Hadjiyanni, T. (2008). Beyond concepts - A studio pedagogy for preparing tomorrow’s designers. International Journal of Architectural Research, 2(2), 41–56.
Selected Honors and Awards
2023 ARCC (Architecture Research Centers Consortium) New Book Award for The Right to Home
2021 Imagine Arts, Design, and Humanities Chair
2021 EDRA Achievement Award (for Landscapes of Hope)
2021 College of Design Outstanding Outreach Award (for Landscapes of Hope)
2021 Outstanding Community Service Award – University of Minnesota (for Design Against Trafficking)
2021 Selected for CIDA’s 2021 Future Visions Project
2021 IIDA Educator Diversity Award
2020 Article on “Decolonizing interior design education” was selected by the Journal of Interior Design for open access as a resource for racial and social justice.
2020 Culturally Enriched Communities selected for MNImpact by the Minnesota Agricultural Experiment Station
2020 IDEC Innovative Teaching Ideas for The Mapping Resilience Project
2018 College of Design Outstanding Contributions to Equity and Diversity Award
2018 Faculty Fellow – Institute for Advanced Study (Spring)
2017 Environmental Design Research Association (EDRA) Service Award
2017 Interior Design Educators Council (IDEC) Service Award
2016 College of Design Outstanding Research Award
2016 Featured in the University of Minnesota's Driven to Discover Campaign
2015 Featured in the University of Minnesota’s Improving Campus Climate Office for Equity and Diversity
2009 College of Design Outstanding Teaching Award
Specialties & Expertise:
Affordable housing; health, income, and educational disparities; mental health; sexual exploitation.