Taher, Mania

Arch & Urban Planning


Mania Taher is a Ph.D. candidate whose research investigates the cultural landscapes of new immigrants with queries of displacement, gender, and race. Her dissertation project, "Shifting Dwellings: Place, Culture, and Identity of Bangladeshi Immigrant Women in New York, USA, 2000-Present," focuses on the place-making of first-generation immigrant Bangladeshi women living in New York, mainly by examining their dwellings and a network of locations within their residential environments. This research also explores how spatial memories of immigrant women influence the way they reconstruct their physical world after resettlement.

Taher's interdisciplinary research interest broadly includes human behavior-built environment relationships and South-Asian urbanism. Her previous research projects include studies of Rohingya refugee community spaces in Milwaukee, public spaces for children, and examination of housing patterns and sanitation scenarios at the informal settlements of Dhaka.

The UWM Graduate School and Asian Faculty and Staff Association have supported Taher's work, as she is a recipient of the DGSF, DDF, and AFSA awards. She holds a B.ARCH degree from Bangladesh University of Engineering & Technology (BUET), Dhaka, Bangladesh, and an M.S. in Urban Design from Columbia University, New York. Before joining the SARUP, Taher served as Assistant Professor of Architecture at the American International University- Bangladesh (AIUB) for more than seven years. Besides teaching, she has been involved in professional architectural practice in Dhaka for several years.

Taher has published book chapters and academic papers in international journals. She has presented papers at several conferences, including Society of Architectural Historians (SAH), Architectural Research Centers Consortium (AARC), Association for Asian Studies (AAS), The Society for American City and Regional Planning (SACRPH), Association of Collegiate Schools of Architecture (ACSA), Environmental Design Research Association (EDRA), and UCL-IRDR Rohingya Conference. She has coordinated academic workshops and exhibitions with non-profit organizations like Habitat for Humanity International- Bangladesh.

At UW-Milwaukee, Taher is working with Arijit Sen (Adviser), Nan Kim (History, UWM), Anna Mansson McGinty (Geography, Women's and Gender Studies, UWM), and Lynne M. Dearborn (Architecture, U Illinois Urbana-Champaign).