Habitat Unit

Chair on sabbatical

Prof. Dr. Philipp Misselwitz

Philipp Misselwitz neu


Room A 624
T + 49 – 30 – 314 – 21908 
F + 49 – 30 – 314 – 21907

Curriculum Vitae

Prof. Dr. Philipp Misselwitz (*Jena, 1974) is an architect and urban planner based in Berlin. He was educated at Cambridge University and the Architectural Association London and received his PhD from Stuttgart University for research on socio-spatial development within urbanised refugee camps. In 2008, he initiated the EU funded research project which led to the development and testing of a community-driven planning methodologies (CIP) conducted in Palestinian refugee camps across the Middle East. He worked for the German Development Cooperation (GIZ) and as a consultant for United Nations Relief and Works Agency before becoming the Chair of International Urbanism at University of Stuttgart (2010-2013).

In 2013, he was appointed Chair of Habitat Unit at the Institute for Architecture of the Technische Universität Berlin - a globally networked research and teaching centre focused on the study of urbanisation processes in the Global South. His current research focuses on user-driven urban development processes and co-production in housing in Europe and the Global South, rural urbanisation processes, translocal spatial production as well as transdisciplinary teaching methodologies in the urban design field.

He is a network partner at Urban Catalyst studio, a planning design consultancy group based in Berlin and curated exhibition projects such as 'Grenzgeografien' (Berlin, Zurich, Istanbul, 2007), 'Refuge' (Rotterdam Architecture Biennale, 2009), 'Open City' (Istanbul, 2010), 'Space, Time, Dignity, Rights' (World Urban Forum, 2012) and 'Folly' (Gwangju, 2013).


Doctorate of Engineering (Dr.-Ing.), University of Stuttgart
Thesis: Camp Cities - Strategies for the Rehabilitation of Palestinian Refugee Camps (Supervisors: Prof. Dr. Eckhart Ribbeck; Prof. Dr. Kosta Mathey)

AA Diploma in Architecture and R.I.B.A. Part 2
Full scholarship for 2-year Diploma studies at Architectural Association, London, UK

1993 – 1996
Bachelor of Arts (BA Honours), Cambridge University
First Class Honours Degree and R.I.B.A. Part 1, D. Roberts Memorial Prize 1996

Employment History+

Since 2013
Chair of International Urbanism and Design
Habitat Unit, Technical University Berlin

Full time professor within the Institute of Architecture and Urban Planning, Faculty of Built Environment of the Technische Universität Berlin, Academic positions: Head of Examination Commission for the interdisciplinary masters degree programme MSc. Urban Design; Chair of Academic Advisory Board for international English-speaking MSc. Programme Urban Management Studies; Responsible for Dual Degree TU Berlin-Tongji University Shanghai; Faculty Member of TU Berlin Campus El Gouna, Egypt; Founding Member of "Smart People" – a transdisciplinary dialogue platform within the TU Berlin's Smart City Initiative.

2010 – 2013
Chair of International Urbanism and Design
University of Stuttgart

Full time professor within the Institute of Urban Planning, Faculty of Architecture and Urban Planning at the Universität Stuttgart. Founder and first director of the international dual degree programme MSc. Integrated Urbanism and Sustainable Design IUSD in cooperation with Ain Shams University Cairo (funded by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) and the Egyptian Ministry of Higher Education (MoHE).

2008 – 2010
Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH

Training and capacity building for UN staff, country government representatives and community representatives in participatory planning methodologies commissioned by GIZ country offices of West Bank, Jordan, Syria and Lebanon; development of manuals and guidelines for community driven planning methodology for refugee camps (CIP).

2006 – 2008
Researcher and Technical Project Manager
University of Stuttgart, UNRWA (United Nations Relief Works Agency)

Research of spatial, socioeconomic, cultural aspects of Palestine refugee camps, development and testing of a new methodology for participatory need assessment and strategic planning funded by the European Commission.

2003 – 2004
Research Assistant (part time)
University of Cambridge

Ember of International research programme 'Conflict in Cities' (principal researcher: Fr. Wendy Pullan) funded by the ESRC (Programme: New Security Challenges): Coordination of Jerusalem field studies.

2002 – 2003
Researcher (part time)
German Cultural Foundation

Head of UK-based research team focusing onto the effects of population shrinkage in East German cities such as Leipzig in comparison with British cities including Manchester and Liverpool.

2001 – 2003
Founding Member and Researcher (part time)
Studio Urban Catalyst

Member of coordination team of EU funded programmes 'Urban Catalyst' (5th Framework Programme, Key action 4 'City of Tomorrow'), based at the Chair of Urban Planning (Prof. Kees Christiaanse) which examined new strategies for the development of urban residual areas in European metropolises.

2001 – 2002
Lecturer (part time)
London Metropolitan University, London

Member of teaching the research team at the Architecture Research Unit (Prof. Florian Beigel).

1996 – 1997
Architecture Research Unit, London Metropolitan University

Member of research team at the Architecture Research Unit (Prof. Florian Beigel) on two winning competitions for reuse of disused industrial site in the Leipzig region (East Germany), concept development and detail drawings for several projects in London, Barcelona, Leipzig and Berlin.

Research Projects+

Research activities at the Habitat Unit, TU Berlin

2016 – 2018
Transnational Production Spaces. Impacts of the clothing industry on urban spaces and urban planning at production locations in Western Turkey and Southern Bulgaria.

Position in the Project: Principal Investigator; Funded by Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft DFG. The research project explores the spatial effects of industrial production and the role of urban planning at different locations of a transnational production network of the clothing industry that connects Southeast European production sites with Western European fashion companies and markets. Project aim: to investigate the interplay of local and transnational forces in the spatial and physical development of these production locations.

2016 – 2018
Architecture, Planning and Foreign Policy: Israeli and GDR Development

Position in the Project: Principal Investigator; Funded by German-Israel Foundation for Scientific Research and Development GIF. Cooperation in sub-Saharan Africa 1950-1990. Cooperation with Ben-Gurion-University, Israel.

2015 – 2017
Simulizi Mijini - Urban Narratives

Position in the Project: Principal Investigator; Funded by the Federal Cultural Foundation of Germany (Bundeskulturstiftung) the project is a transdisciplinary investigation in different understandings and practices of urban heritage in the cities of Daressalaam (Tanzania) and Berlin.

2014 – 2015
Co-op City Network: Transnational Knowledge Network for the Promotion of User-driven Housing Solutions

Position in the Project: Principal Investigator
Won seed grant from International Social Science Council (ISSC) to set up a trans-disciplinary global network consisting of social science researchers, planning practitioners, NGOs and governmental bodies from Eastern Africa, Brazil, India and Europe. Project aim: to critically examine current housing delivery models, to understand potentials of local user-driven practices, to consider how residents can become more effective actors in the formal housing sector and, to consider which potentials of user-driven practices public administrations can incorporate into their delivery schemes.

2014 – 2015
Re-Figuration von Räumen

Position in the project: Co-director of proposed doctoral programme (with Prof. Dr. Martina Löw) as part of Sonderforschungsbereich; Member of an interdisciplinary consortium under the lead of sociologist Prof. Dr. Martina Löw, investigating changing concepts and perceptions of space as translocal, polycontextual constructs. The consortium is currently preparing an application to the German Research Fund (DFG) – Sonderforschungsbereich.

2014 – 2016
Development Priorities in Informal Areas: Planning, Realization and Local Perceptions

Position in the Project: Principal Investigator; Funded by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) and the Egyptian Ministry of Higher Education (MoHE) a German-Egyptian research team investigates local self-mobilisation patterns and tools in informal neighbourhoods and compares grass root development models with international development cooperation approaches.

2014 – 2017
PhD Fellowship programme: Mahalle Meets Stadtquartier

Position in the Project: Principal Investigator; International PhD Programme funded by the German Academic Exchange Network DAAD with partners in Berlin, Rabat, Tehran and Istanbul investigates socio-cultural traditions and concepts of "neighbourhood" in Europe and the MENA region.

2014 – 2016
DARCH! Dar es Salaam Centre for Architectural Heritage

Position in the Project: Principal Investigator; DARCH! is a joint initiative by the Habitat Unit and the Architects Association of Tanzania (AAT) in collaboration with the Department of Architecture at Ardhi University, Dar es Salaam. It is funded by the European Development Fund. The aim of DARCH! Is to develop the first architecture and urban heritage think tank in Eastern Africa, promoting academic research, policy advise and capacity building programmes.

2012 – 2015
International Network of Urban Laboratories (Urban Lab+)

Position in the project: Team member (financial responsibility) and Member of Steering Board; Funded by the Erasmus Mundus Programme Action 3 of the European Union, Habitat Unit coordinates a global network of eight universities including Delft School of Design (DSD), Bartlett School of Architecture of University College London London (UCL), École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL), Calabria University in Italy (UNICAL), the Pontificia, Universidad Catolica (PUC) in Santiago de Chile. Indian Institute of Science (IISc) in Bangalore, India, Wits University (WITS) in Johannesburg, South Africa and the Chinese University of Hong Kong (CUHK). The aim of the project is to develop practice-oriented transdisciplinary teaching modules (urban laboratories).

2010 – 2013
Interdisciplinary research platform "Housing-Manufacturing-Water" - Improving the living conditions of the urban poor

Position in the Project: Principal network coordinator in cooperation with Prof. em. P. Herrle; The Housing - Manufacturing - Water (HMW) program was initiated in 2009 as a collaboration between the Technische Universität Berlin (TUB) and six partner universities in Africa, Latin America and India and funded by the German Academic Exchange Network DAAD and the German Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ). Since its inception, HMW pursued the integration of multidisciplinary knowledge fields into yearly common learning projects and workshops. Urban designers and planers as well as manufacturing and water engineers jointly develop adequate strategies for the achievement of UN's Millennium Development Goals, especially those referring to the development of sustainable housing areas, supply of drinking water and generation of income sources.


Doctoral theses completed

Philipp Meuser: Ästhetik der Platte: Wohnungsbau in der Sowjetunion zwischen Stalin und Glasnost


Doctoral theses currently supervised

2015 – 2018
Ayham Dalal, Between Humanitarian and Socio-Cultural Order: Understanding Conflicts and Potentials Emerging from Refugee Camps Urbanisation (full scholarship of the German Academic Exchange Network - DAAD)

2015 – 2018
Chaghaf Howayek, Forced migration and displacement in Lebanon – Refugee Camps study (scholarship of the Centre of Metropolitan Studies, TU Berlin)

2014 – 2017
Millicent Awialie Akaateba, Ghana: Land Governance and basis services delivery in Peri-urban Areas in Northern Ghana: Implications on Planning (full scholarship of the German Academic Exchange Network - DAAD)

2014 – 2017
Huang Huang, China: The Next Decade of Post Rural Urbanization in China: From Urban Production Factors to Urban-Rural Consumption Places (full scholarship of the President of the TU Berlin)

2014 – 2017
Salma Khamis, Egypt: Housing the Egyptian Middle Classes (full scholarship of the German Academic Exchange Network - DAAD)

2014 – 2017
Ivan Rabodzeenko, Russian Federation: Strategic temporary use of vacant properties as a tool to deal with areas in decline (full scholarship of the German Academic Exchange Network - DAAD)

2014 – 2017
Yaman Hebbo, Syria: Integrated Transport Strategies for Syrian Cities (full scholarship of the European Commission)

2013 – 2016
Shaimaa Abouelmagd, Egypt: Slum Rehabilitation in Greater Cairo: Development and Evaluation Processes from a Livelihood Perspective (full scholarship of the German Academic Exchange Network - DAAD)

2013 – 2016
Vesta Nele Zareh, Germany: A City Under the Influence – Der Export westlicher Planungsmodelle am Fallbeispiel des Tehran Comprehensive Plan von Victor Gruen und Abdol-Aziz Farmanfarmaian (full scholarship of the Friedrich-Ebert-Foundation)

2012 – 2015
Yasar Adanali, Turkey: Spatial Democracy? Traditions of Cooperative Housing in Istanbul

2012 – 2015
Olivia Kummel, Germany: Emergence and Influence of Local Governance Structures within so-called 'Informal Settlementa': Comparative Investigation in Underprivileged Neighbourhoods in Cairo, Kathmandu, and Ulaanbaatar (partial scholarship of the Mongolian Academy of Science and Technology - MUST)

2011 – 2015
Karolin Stahl, Germany: Der öffentliche Wohnungsbau im südlichen Afrika seit der Unabhängigkeit am Beispiel Malawi – Erfolge, Scheitern, Zukunftsperspektiven (full scholarship of the Landesgraduiertenförderungsprogramm Baden-Württemberg)



with Ahlert, M. Becker, M. Kreisel, A., Pawlicki, N. Schrammek, T., eds. (2018) Moravia Manifiesto. Coding Strategies for Informal Neighborhoods, Jovis Berlin.

with Lee, R. Fenk, A. Barbe, D. (2018) Things Only Exist Once You Give Them a Name – Unpacking Urban Heritage, Mkuki na Nyota, Dar es Salaam.

with Gribat, N. and M. Görlich, eds. (2017)  Vergessene Schulen. Architekturlehre zwischen Reform und Revolte um 1968. Leipzig: Spectormag, 2017.

with Cordelia Polinna, Klaus Overmeyer (2016) New Urban Agenda Konkret – Fallbeispiele aus deutscher Sicht. Bundesinstitut für Bau-, Stadt- und Raumforschung (BBSR).

with Brück, A., Million, A., Schlaack, J., Schröder, C., Stollmann, J., (forthcoming 2016) Beware of Smart People! Re-defining the Smart City paradigm towards inclusive urbanism. Universitätsverlag der Technischen Universität Berlin (open access).

with Julia Hartmann, Pia Lorenz and Franziska Laue, eds. (2014) CampCities. Trialog, 1-2, 2013.

with Philipp Oswalt and Klaus Overmeyer, eds. (2013) Urban Catalyst – The Power of Temporary Use. DOM Publishers, Berlin.

with Nikolaus Hirsch and Eyun Chun, eds. (2013) Folly. Hatje Cantz, Berlin.

with Tim Rieniets (2010) Jerusalem and the Principles of Conflict Urbanism, in: Brand, R., ed. The Architecture of War and Peace. Journal of Urban Technology, Volume 16, Issue 2 & 3. Routledge Publishers, London.

with Nikolaus Hirsch, Markus Miessen, Matthias Görlich (2009) Building Institutions. Berlin/ New York, Sternberg Press.

with Tim Rieniets (2006) City of Collision – Jerusalem and the Principles of Conflict Urbanism. Birkhäuser Publishers, Basel/ New York.

with Hans-Ulrich Obrist and Philipp Oswalt, eds. (2005) Fun Palace 200X – Der Berliner Schloßplatz: Abriß, Neubau oder Grüne Wiese? Martin-Schmitz-Verlag, Berlin.


Book contributions

(2018) Rethinking Temporary Use in the Neoliberal City. Cupers, K. Miessen, M. Cupers, Spaces of Uncertainty – Berlin Revisited, Birkhäuser, Basel: 60-70.

(2017) Und täglich grüßt das Murmeltier – eine ursächliche Betrachtung des Ephemeren in der Stadtentwicklung. In: d’Alencon, P. Bauerfeind, B. Konrad, D. et. Handbuch und Planungshilfe: Ephemere Stadtentwicklung - Neue Handlungsspielräume in der Planungskultur. Wüstenrot Stiftung und DOM-Verlag Berlin: 20-26.


Refereed articles

with Gribat, Nina (forthcoming 2018). Temporary Uses of Space. The Wiley-Blackwell Encyclopedia of Urban and Regional Studies.

(2018) Koproduktive Ansätze zur Lösung der globalen Wohnraumkrise. Geographische Rundschau, GR-Themenheft, Zukunft der Städte 6: 10-15.

with Dalal, A. (2017) Architecturen als Verhandlungsräume - CampCities zwischen universalistischer humanitärer Ordnung und lokaler Handlungsmacht. Archplus 230. Architekturen der Globalisierung, pp. 32-41.

with Huchzermeyer, Marie (2016), Coproducing inclusive cities? Addressing knowledge gaps and conflicting rationalities between self-provisioned housing and state-led housing programmes, COSUST - Current Opinion in Environmental Sustainability, 73-79.

with Rieniets, Tim. (2010) Jerusalem and the Principles of Conflict Urbanism, in: Brand, R. Ed. The Architecture of War and Peace. Journal of Urban Technology, Volume 16, Issue 2 & 3. Routledge Publishers, London

with Haim Yacobi, Wendy Pullan and Rami Nasrallah (2007) Jerusalem's Road 1: An Inner City Frontier? City 11, (2).


Other articles and publications

(2017) Vom Camp zur Stadt. Hehl, R. Engel, L. (eds). Transtopia. Ruby Press, pp 85-93.
with Archer D. (2017) Understanding global agendas and their relevance for national and local governments. Discussion paper commissioned by the Cities Alliance - Habitat III JWP.

with Alfaro d’Alencon et. al. (2017) Und täglich grüßt das Murmeltier. Wüstenrot Stiftung. Ephemere Stadtentwicklung - Neue Handlungsspielräume in der Planungskultur; DOM-Verlag.

with M. Alfiky, L.Born, H. Elmouelhi, M. Salheen (2017) Development Priorities in Cairo's Informal Areas - Planing, Realisation, and Local Perceptions. Trialog 122.

with Dalal A., Meininghaus E., Zehner C., (2015) Stadt und Flüchtlinge. Hintergrundpapier. Erstellt im Auftrag der Gesellschaft für internationale Zusammenarbeit und dem Ministerium für wirtschaftliche Zusammenarbeit und Entwicklung.

with Salcedo, J. (2015) Discussion Paper Nr. 3: Sustainable Development Goals and Habitat III: Opportunities for a successful New Urban Agenda, Cities Alliance. Adelphi & Urban Catalyst.

with Muñoz, M R., Walter A.M., Salcedo, J. (2016) The Urban Dimension of the SDGs: Implications for the New Urban Agenda. Working Paper commissioned by GIZ. Eschborn / Berlin.

with Undine Giseke, Martina Löw, Angela Million (2015) Mastering Interdisziplinarität - Der Master Urban Design an der TU Berlin. PLANERIN 6/2015.

with Ulf Matthiesen, Robert Kaltenbrunner and Stefan Willinger (2014) IZur Bedeutung des Informellen in der Stadtentwicklung. Informationen zur Raumentwicklung. In: Informeller Urbanismus, edited by Bundesinstitut für Bau-, Stadt- und Raumforschung, 85-94.

with Julia Strutz (2012) Mischwohnen in der Türkei. In: T. Harlander and G. Kuhn, eds. Soziale Mischung in der Stadt. Krämer Verlag.

(2012) Space Time Dignity Rights. Berlin/ Amman: BMZ / UNRWA.

(2011) Refugees Plan the Future of Al Fawwar. In: A. Knudsen and S. Hanafi, eds. Palestinian Refugees: Identity, Space and Place in the Levant. London: Routledge.

with Nikolaus Hirsch (2011) Cultural Agencies. Trans-Local-Act: Cultural Practices Within and Across. Paris: AAA.

with Sari Hanafi (2010) Testing a New Paradigm – UNRWA's Camp Improvement Programme. Refugee Survey Quarterly 1, Oxford University Press.

(2010) Planners Face Urbanised Refugee Camps. In: Padilla Galicia, S.  and Redondo Gomez, M. eds. Urbanismo Informal. Mexico-City Universidad, Autonoma Metropolitana.

(2010) Palästinensische Flüchtlingslager neu denken: Von Abhängigkeit zu ziviler Selbstverwaltung. In: M. Misselwitz and K. Schlichte, eds. Politik der Unentschiedenheit - Die internationale Politik und ihr Umgang mit Kriegsflüchtlingen. Berlin: Transcript Verlag.

with Tim Rieniets (2010) Grenzgeografien. In: K. Kasböck, C. Leitner, A. Hagemann, D. Heißenbüttel, and I. Gunda, eds. Friedensschauplätze / Theater of Peace - Peace and Visibility in an Asymmetrical World. Berlin: NGBK.

with Can Altay (2009) Refuge – Five City Portfolio. Amsterdam: Sun Publishers.

with Nikolaus Hirsch (2009) Kulturagenten: Kultur zwischen Institution und Agency in Istanbul. archplus 195.

with Can Altay (2009) Refuge – Architectural Propositions for Unbound Spaces. In: Rieniets, T. Sigler, J. and Christiaanse, K. eds. Open City – Designing Coexistence. Sun Publishers: Amsterdam.

with Philipp Oswalt and Klaus Overmeyer (2008) Stadtentwicklung ohne Städtebau – Planerischer Alptraum oder Gelobtes Land? In: G. Schmitt, and K. Selle, eds. Bestand? Perspektiven für das Wohnen in der Stadt. Edition Stadtentwicklung. Dortmund: Verlag Dorothea Rohn, 628-638.

(2007) Symbolic Boundaries. In: S. Basar, A. Carver, and M. Miessen, eds. With/ Without – Spatial Products, Practices and Politics in the Middle East. Bidoun/ Moutamarat, Dubai.

with Philipp Oswalt and Klaus Overmeyer (2007) Open-Source Urbanismus - Vom Inselurbanismus zur Urbanität der Zwischenräume. archplus 183.

with Philipp Oswalt and Klaus Overmeyer (2006) Patterns of the Unplanned. In: Q. Stevens and K. Franck, eds. Loose Space - Possibility and Diversity in Urban Life. London: Routledge, 271-288.

with Stefan Rethfeld (2006) Funpalace 200X. In: A. Deuflhard and S. Krempl-Klieeeisen, eds. Volkspalast. Berlin: Verlag Theater der Zeit.

with Philipp Oswalt (2004) Architects as Agents. Verb. Barcelona: Actar Publications.

with Tim Rieniets (2004) Jerusalem – Dialogues Du Silence. Faces (Zeitschrift für Kunst, Architektur und Städtebau), University of Geneva.

with Tim Rieniets (2004) Silent Conversations – Architecture and Spatial Conflict at Jerusalem's Periphery. In: Scroope – Magazine for Architecture and Urbanism. University of Cambridge.

(2004) Die Schnellste, Schrumpfende Region Großbritanniens – ein Gespräch mit Patrick Keiller. In: Philipp Oswalt, ed. Schrumpfende Städte. Munich: Prestel Publishers.

(2003-2004) Urban Warfare – a conversation with Eyal Weizman. archplus (2003) Exhibition catalogue "Territories", KW Berlin (2003) Tank Magazine (2004) mute magazine (2004) UmBauPresse, University of Kassel (2004).


Peer reviewed

with Huang, H., Guiqing, Y., Langguth, H. (2017). Post-Rural Urbanization: Enlightenment on Exploratory Practice in Rural Germany, China City Planning Review, in press.

Professional and Academic Affiliations+

Since 2015
Member of the extended Academic Senate of TU Berlin

Member of Executive Board of Institute for Architecture, TU Berlin (Institutsrat)

Since 2014
Member of Advisory Board of sub\urban. zeitschrift für kritische stadtforschung (peer-reviewed, open-access journal)

Head of the Academic Board of a postgraduate interdisciplinary master program MSc. Urban Management Studies, TU Berlin

Member of the Examination Board of MSc. Architecture, TU Berlin

Since 2013
Director of Studies of international Dual Degree Programme MSc. Urban Design, TU Berlin – Tongji University Shanghai

Head of Examination Board of MSc. Urban Design, TU Berlin

Since 2012
Member of Advisory Board of TRIALOG (peer-reviewed journal)

2010 – 2013
Founding director of the international Dual Degree programme MSc. Integrated Urbanism and Sustainable Design (MSc. IUSD) in cooperation with Ain Shams University Cairo (funded by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) and the Egyptian Ministry of Higher Education (MoHE).