Francesca Ammon is an historian of the built environment. Her teaching, research, and writing focus on the changing shapes and spaces of the twentieth-century American city. She grounds her interdisciplinary approach to this subject in the premise that the landscape materializes social relations, cultural values, and economic processes. In particular, Professor Ammon is interested in the ways that visual culture informs environmental understanding, the relationships between cities and nature, the politics of place and space, and the roles of business and the state in shaping the physical world.
Before joining the PennDesign faculty, Professor Ammon was a Visiting Scholar at the American Academy of Arts & Sciences. She has also held the Sally Kress Tompkins Fellowship at the Historic American Buildings Survey (HABS) and long-term fellowships as a Whiting Fellow in the Humanities, Ambrose Monell Foundation Fellow in Technology and Democracy at the Miller Center of Public Affairs, and John E. Rovensky Fellow with the Business History Conference. She is currently a member of the board of the Society for American City & Regional Planning History (SACRPH).