Rosetta S. Elkin

Associate Professor of Landscape Architecture

on leave Spring 2020




Rosetta S. Elkin is Principal of RSE Landscape, Associate Professor of Landscape Architecture at Harvard University’s Graduate School of Design, and Faculty Associate at Harvard Arnold Arboretum. Her research and teaching consider living environments with a particular focus on plant morphology, behavior, and intelligence. She is committed to design as a means to address the risk, injustice, and instability brought about by planetary climate disintegration. Her practice prioritizes public exhibitions, open access publishing, and collaborative research to promote a more thoughtful and accountable design agenda. She is currently the recipient of the 2018 Garden Club of America Rome Prize in landscape architecture.

As a registered landscape architect in the Netherlands, Elkin founded RSE Landscape in 2007. Current projects include the study of root systems in coastal defense strategies, an investigation of state-scale ecological transformation in Rhode Island, and design research for sea-level adaptation on barrier islands in Florida. RSE Landscape is also currently working on a commission from the Robert Rauschenberg Foundation concerning landscape adaptation on Captiva Island, Florida, and a Harvard Climate Change Fund-supported project that documents climate-induced retreat case studies worldwide.

Elkin is the author of Tiny Taxonomy (Actar 2017), a publication which reflects on the scale of individual plants in practice through a reading of three design installations. With support from the Graham Foundation, Dutch Fonds BKVB, and Canada Council for the Arts, she is currently working on a monograph publication about the geo-political ambitions of continental tree planting programs. Elkin’s work has been exhibited at the Victory and Albert Museum, Les Jardins de Metis, Chelsea Festival, and the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, and featured in publications including Journal of Landscape Architecture, New Geographies, Harvard Design Magazine and Lotus International. Before joining the GSD as the Daniel Urban Kiley Fellow, she was a Senior Designer and Project Manager at Inside/Outside in Amsterdam and taught at the Academie Bouwkunst and the Gerrit Rietveld Academy.





  • Ocean State

    Rosetta S. Elkin, Curator

    NOV 3, 2014 – JAN 20, 2015