Francesca Ammon is a cultural historian of urban planning and the built environment. Her teaching and research focus on the changing spaces of American cities, from World War II to the present. She grounds her interdisciplinary approach to this subject in the premise that the landscape materializes social relations, cultural values, and political and economic processes. Professor Ammon is particularly interested in the history of urban revitalization, with an emphasis on urban renewal; the dynamic relationship between cities and nature; public history as a tool for community-based research and engagement; and the ways that visual culture has shaped understanding of what cities are, have been, and should be.
At Penn, Professor Ammon is a member of the standing faculty of the City & Regional Planning Department and the Graduate Program in Historic Preservation. She is also an associated faculty member of the History Department, an affiliated faculty member of the Center for Experimental Ethnography (CEE), a Faculty Fellow of the Penn Institute for Urban Research, and a member of the Gender Sexuality and Women’s Studies (GSWS) Executive Board. She has been a colloquium member of the Penn/Mellon Foundation Humanities + Urbanism + Design Initiative and an Andrew W. Mellon DH Fellow at the Price Lab for Digital Humanities. She currently serves on the board of the Society for American City & Regional Planning History (SACRPH).
Before joining the Weitzman School faculty, Professor Ammon was a Visiting Scholar at the American Academy of Arts & Sciences. She has also been the receipient of an American Council of Learned Societies (ACLS) Fellowship, Society of Architectural Historians (SAH)/Mellon Fellowship, Whiting Fellowship in the Humanities, Ambrose Monell Foundation Fellowship in Technology and Democracy through the Miller Center of Public Affairs, John E. Rovensky Fellowship from the Business History Conference, and Sally Kress Tompkins Fellowship, jointly sponsored by SAH and the Historic American Buildings Survey (HABS).
Ph.D., American Studies, Yale University
M.Phil, American Studies, Yale University
M.A., History, Yale University
M.E.D. (Master of Environmental Design), Yale School of Architecture
B.S.E., Civil Engineering, Princeton University