Meet Gabriela Fernandez

Gabriela Fernandez

Gabriela Fernandez is the Director and Founder of the Metabolism of Cities Living Lab under the Center for Human Dynamics in the Mobile Age at SDSU working to localize the U.N. SDGs in southern California, the Baja California, Mexico region, and globally. Fernandez serves as the United Nations Environmental Program delegate for the Major Group for Children & Youth - Microplastics and Marine Litter Working Group which serves as the formal engagement mechanism for young people to engage in the processes of UNEP and active member of the Sustainable Development Solutions Network-USA.

At SDSU, she is an adjunct faculty in the Department of Geography, College of Arts and Letters where she teaches graduate students in the Master of Science in Big Data Analytics Program. She teaches a course and studio on the UN SDGs ‘Smart Cities and Sustainability. Data Science Methods for Smart City Applications,’ where students develop practical applications, educational campaigns, apps, dashboards, and tools through the use of big data analytics when working with vulnerable populations in San Diego and Imperial County.

Fernandez received a Ph.D. in Urban Planning, Design, and Policy from the Department of Architecture and Urban Studies at the Politecnico di Milano in Milan, Italy. During her studies she was a Ph.D. Visiting Student at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Department of Architecture, Building Technology, and Urban Metabolism Group. She received a B.S. in Public Administration with an emphasis in City Planning and a Master of City Planning from the School of Public Affairs at SDSU. Her research interests include urban metabolism ideologies and material flow analysis of metropolitan cities. Identifying urban typologies and socioeconomic indicators in the urban context while promoting public policy, smart cities, data science, circular economy methods, United Nations Sustainable Development Goals , and underrepresented populations.

She is Co-Founder and Researcher at the Metabolism of Cities, a non-profit organization registered in Brussels, Belgium with data, tools, and publications related to urban metabolism studies.