Ming-Han Li named MSU School of Planning, Design and Construction director

In August of 2017, Ming-Han Li was named director of SPDC. His appointment became effective Jan. 1, 2018. Li succeeds Scott G. Witter, who retired in December. Currently Scott Loveridge is serving as interim director.

Photo of Ming-Han Li.
Ming-Han Li, director of the School of Planning, Design and Construction.

In August of 2017, Ming-Han Li was named director of the Michigan State University (MSU) School of Planning, Design and Construction (SPDC). His appointment became effective January 1, 2018. Li succeeds Scott G. Witter, who retired in December. Currently Scott Loveridge is serving as interim director.

Li currently serves as a professor and associate department head of the Department of Landscape Architecture & Urban Planning (LAUP) at Texas A&M University. He is also a research engineer with a joint appointment at the Texas A&M Transportation Institute, the most renowned transportation research group in the world.

“Dr. Li’s experience and scholarship make him a great fit,” said Ron Hendrick, Dean of the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources. “His interdisciplinary approach to the built environment mirrors our approach and opportunity in the School of Planning, Design and Construction.”

Li is equally enthusiastic about SPDC. “Yes! I’m going to East Lansing, Michigan. What an honor to have the opportunity to work with this talented group of people with diverse cultural backgrounds and intellectuality who are dedicated to making a difference for the world,” he has said.

Li started his academic career in 2003 as an assistant professor, and within 11 years reached full professor at Texas A&M in 2014. Because of his excellent teaching, research, and service records, he was awarded the Senior Schob Scholar title (equivalent to professorship) by LAUP in 2014.

He was inducted as a fellow of the Center for Health Systems and Design at Texas A&M in 2014, and the Center for Housing and Urban Development in 2012. Most recently, Li was inducted into the Academy of Fellows by the Council of Educators in Landscape Architecture, where he has served in various positions including president. In 2017, he was named one of the 25 “Most Admired Educators” by DesignIntelligence.

Li is also a professional engineer and a professional landscape architect in the State of Texas. He earned a bachelor of science in agricultural engineering from the National Taiwan University, a master of science in civil engineering from the University of Texas at Austin, and both a master of landscape architecture and a doctoral degree in urban and regional sciences from Texas A&M.

His teaching has focused on sustainable water management, low- impact development, and landscape architecture construction. Li succeeds at bringing together multiple disciplines to collaborate on research, focusing on low- impact development, green infrastructure, bioretention storm water facilities for transportation corridors, streambank soil bioengineering, and sustainable and resilient landscapes and communities.

Lately, he has developed performance measure research on built environments, particularly targeting landscapes.

More than 40 peer-reviewed journal articles, as well as numerous conference papers and research monographs, have been authored or co-authored by Li. Many of his publications have been featured in top-notch journals, including Landscape and Urban Planning, Water Environment Research, and American Society of Civil Engineers Journals.

Li’s competitive research funding has come from state agencies and federal programs, including the National Cooperative Highway Research Program and the Southwest Region University Transportation Center. His total funding (internal and external) has reached $4.4 million, of which $1.1 million was allocated to him directly.

The School of Planning, Design and Construction is the only school in the nation that unites four built environment disciplines to foster synergistic learning and collaboration: Construction management, interior design, landscape architecture, and urban and regional planning. These four academic programs are accredited and produce career-ready graduates. Students are provided with the opportunity to learn about and work on real-world, cross-discipline projects and activities. Nationally recognized, world- renowned faculty cross-collaborate on pressing built environment issues, and deliver timely and crucial sustainable research and outreach.

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