Yu Gao

Yu Gao is a trained architect, designer, and social entrepreneur. Her work focuses on helping reduce the socioeconomic inequalities faced by rural migrants within China. Her project, Micro Institution SPOT (M.I.Spot), adds economic and cultural value to the existing infrastructure of the schools for migrant children. It incorporates living space for artists into the schools and encourages creative tourism to help subsidize the cost of those schools. Through fostering a mutually beneficial relationship between students, educators and artists, Yu hopes to create a new, socially engaging creative institution which can be treated as a prototype and be replicated around the world.

Prior to coming to the United States, Yu worked as an architect in Hong Kong, managing a variety of projects from high-end commercial and residential towers to primary schools. She’s from mainland China and possesses a true passion to serve the underprivileged.

2012 MArch Thesis: Micro-Institution:  Design and Craft in Education for Socio-Economic Change Urban China Migrant Worker's Children

2013 SMArchS Thesis:  Self-Organized Collaboration: A Self-evolving Collaborative Production Model for Social Enterprise Grassroots Startups