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Practice-Based Research: Operationalizing Landscape Performance

Recording from live webinar on 3/20/14

Practice-Based Research: Operationalizing Landscape Performance

Leading-edge design firms are incorporating landscape performance research into their everyday practice. From Design Workshop’s measurement tools backpack to SmithGroupJJR’s WaterScore metric to OLIN’s Knowledge Base, learn why, how, and what these firms are investing in to gather baseline data, set performance objectives, evaluate and disseminate performance of built projects.


Learning Objectives

  1. Explore examples of small and large firms incorporating landscape performance research into everyday practice.
  2. Understand how considering performance throughout the design/development process leads to more sustainable outcomes.
  3. Learn how designers can use post-occupancy evaluations to achieve the SITES monitoring credit 9.
  4. Examine the opportunities and challenges associated with practice-based research.



Allyson Mendenhall, PLA
Associate, Director of DW Legacy Design, Design Workshop
Allyson directs the firm’s Legacy Design initiative, which sets comprehensive sustainable agendas for projects and seeks measureable economic, environmental, community and aesthetic outcomes. In this role, she develops tools and practice models, and she promotes and teaches the methodology across the firm’s six offices.

Deb Mitchell, FASLA, PLA
Senior Vice President, SmithGroupJJR
SmithGroupJJR has long been a leader in sustainability, specifically LEED certification, the Living Building Challenge, and 2030 Commitment to net zero. The firm rolled out its WaterScore metric in 2013 as a tool to analyze net zero water strategies by capturing both site and building water use and documenting project water cycles.

Skip Graffam, ASLA, PLA
Partner, Director of Research, OLIN
With over 24 years experience in architecture, landscape architecture, and academia, Skip has designed and managed award-winning projects that include waterfronts, brownfield redevelopments, urban parks, cultural venues, and university campuses. He is currently leading the competition-winning effort for Sylvan Theater on the National Mall.



Research at Design Workshop - Transcript of Allyson Mendenhall's presentation

Research at SmithGroupJJR - Transcript of Deb Mitchell's presentation


NOTE: This recorded webinar is no longer eligible for continuing education credits. However, you may access the quiz here.

LAF is grateful to the many individuals and organizations that provide financial support towards fulfilling our mission to support the preservation, improvement, and enhancement of the environment.

Much of what LAF is able to accomplish would not be possible without the thought leadership and financial investment of our major supporters, including ASLA, which provides over $125,000 of in-kind support annually.