Welcome new staff member in the Department of Architecture: Dr Likai Wang

February 24, 2023

The Department of Architecture at XJTLU is excited to welcome new staff member Dr Likai Wang, whose research aims to leverage computational design and evolutionary optimization to promote human-computer collaboration.

Having him on board, the Department is able to further improve the teaching quality, expand the faculty capacity, and provide excellent education for our undergraduate and postgraduate programmes.

Dr Likai Wang
Assistant Professor


ARC102 Small Scale Architecture Design

ARC408 Dissertation


Prior to joining XJTLU, I conducted postdoctoral research at National University of Singapore and at Nanjing University. In these two universities, I worked with leading researchers in the evolutionary design and self-motivated students who also pushed my thinking and reflection. My Ph.D. work was awarded an Excellent Doctoral Dissertation of Jiangsu Province.

Applying computational techniques to architecture is an engaging but also challenging topic in research and design practice, which requires both enthusiasm for computation and a comprehensive understanding of architectural design, design abstraction, and representation. Thus, pursuing this field allows me to maintain parallel thoughts related to various design and technical aspects.

I developed a Grasshopper plugin called EvoMass, and it just passed ten thousand downloads last year on Food4Rhino.

EvoMass (Design variants with performance simulations)

Research interests

My research aims to leverage computational design and evolutionary optimization to promote human-computer collaboration and co-evolutionary processes for helping human designers to solve “wicked” and ill-defined architectural design problems, with a special focus on sustainable and energy-efficient building design. Other than that, I’m also interested in enhancing design cognition and creativity by computational design and evolutionary optimization.

I hope to create a pipeline bringing architectural design back to the computational design research for the academic and research community. For everyday people, I hope to offer practitioner designers a handy tool for building design optimization and exploration.

In the future, I hope to further explore the potential of integrating more advanced AI techniques in design exploration, design cognition, and design innovation.

Web-based evaluation server for architectural and urban design optimization and exploration

Reason to join XJTLU

The Department of Architecture at XJTLU provides a design-centered teaching and research environment that allows faculty members to integrate their expertise and interests into the design education process. In addition, the diverse professional and academic backgrounds of the faculty also create a unique platform that can promote various design-based research and research-based design opportunities. This is also the major motivation for me to choose XJTLU.

Advice for students

A good computational designer should be first a good architect, and one’s understanding of architecture determines how far he/she can go in the research and practice of computational design.

By Yi Qian

Images courtesy of Dr Likai Wang

February 24, 2023