The “rich and complex behavior” that is achieved through deployable structures has the opportunity to be more than simply fanciful elegance. Rather, due to the transformative nature of deployable structures, they can be designed to be easily transportable for rapid deployment from a small, packaged state to a large volume. In this manner, structural engineers can design deployable bridges and shelters that can be packaged small but deployed rapidly for emergency relief in the immediate aftermath of a large-scale natural or man-made disaster. Such disasters often result in the need to quickly provide shelters for large numbers of displaced people. Rapidly expandable shelters and bridges that are lightweight, inexpensive, and easy to deploy are critical to an effective humanitarian response. These structures can provide shelter and transportation infrastructure for displaced families as well as create an environment suitable for dispensing essential needs such as food and water. They can have an immediate impact on mortality and morbidity rates and foster an environment for healthy hygiene, thus limiting the spread of infectious diseases. Need for such shelters and bridges has been apparent in events both within the United States (e.g., Hurricanes Sandy and Katrina) and in events abroad (e.g., Haiti Earthquake and Indian Ocean Tsunami). It has been projected that there will be an increase in the number of such large-scale hazards by a factor of five within the next fifty years.  With this growing need, structural engineers must investigate this type of research to promote innovative solutions for disaster relief. By designing these structures with aesthetic intentions, the engineer also has the capability of providing a feeling of security and a sense of home that would be critical to the recovery of survivors. These social and aesthetic motivations served as both the impetus for my proposed SOM Foundation Structural Engineering Fellowship itinerary and for the research program that I am building as the John Cardinal O’Hara Assistant Professor of Civil & Environmental Engineering & Earth Sciences at the University of Notre Dame. More specifically, through this fellowship I investigated elegant, deployable structures for social sustainability by 1) visiting the site of a recent disaster, 2) meeting designers at research centers and design firms, and 3) evaluating deployable structures through site visits. These experiences have taught me about the need and context for deployable structures, the current state-of-the-art in design both in academia and industry, and challenges in building such structures. This experience has set the groundwork for my research program at the University of Notre Dame where I have started the Kinetic Structures Laboratory—a laboratory devoted to the design and optimization of deployable structures. Recent and current research projects include finding new forms for movable bridges, designing rapidly deployable shelters, and optimizing deployable bridges with applications for the military, the developing world, and disaster relief.