Interdisciplinary Research Program – TUDelft Faculty of Architecture and the Built Environment
Lines of Flight—DU PhD Seminar # 2

Delta Urbanism PhD Seminar # 2

15 October 2021
2 pm — 6 pm CET


For registration and details, please send an email to: t.bacchin[at]
In the email, please state your research affiliation (institution) and topic.

After registering, you will receive a confirmation e-mail containing information about joining the meeting (link to Zoom session), reading and video material.


Program curated by

Michaela Büsse

Associate Researcher
Humboldt University Berlin
Institute for Cultural History and Theory

Faculty of Architecture and the Built Environment
Section of Urban Design
Delta Urbanism Research Group


Taneha Kuzniecow Bacchin and Fransje Hooimeijer

Under the framework of Delta Urbanism Research Group, Department of Urbanism,
TU Delft Faculty of Architecture and the Built Environment.

The PhD seminar introduces recent works at the intersections of social science, humanities, arts and design that enrich and challenge premises in urban design and landscape architecture. The seminar is two-fold focusing on emerging discourses as well as interdisciplinary methodologies. PhD students are encouraged to reflect on their own research trajectories in dialogue with invited guests as well as each other’s projects.

2:00 – 2:30 PM
Getting to know each other and the scope of the seminar
2:30 – 4:00 PM
The Devil’s in the Details
Lecture by Charlotte Malterre-Barthes, Harvard Graduate School of Design
Every decision planners make in a design process has an impact when implemented, not only on the site of construction, but also on the site of extraction and of production. From the window frames of a house to the concrete pillars of a highway bridge, from the wood flooring of a living room to the asphalt of our streets, and from the steel bolts of a door to the trees species of a park, choices about the materiality of the built environment have a global knock-on effect. In this discussion, the author argues it is necessary to politicize details and components in order to connect them to contemporary forms of resource extraction and appropriation, as well as, ultimately, to rethink the production of our infrastructure, our cities, our homes and our lives.
Charlotte Malterre-Barthes is an architect, urban designer, and Assistant Professor of Urban Design at the Harvard Graduate School of Design. Malterre-Barthes’ teaching and research interests are related to how design disciplines can critically engage with issues of resources, the mainstream economy, governance, and ecological/social justice. Principal of the urban design agency OMNIBUS, she holds a PhD from ETH Zürich on the effects of the political economy of food on the built environment. As guest professor at TU Berlin (2018-2019) she investigated and challenged the predatorily modus operandi of real estate in the German capital, and as program director of the Master of Advanced Studies in Urban Design at the chair of Marc Angélil (2014-2019) focused on informal housing, migration and inclusivity in Mediterranean cities, co-publishing Housing Cairo: The Informal Response (2017) and Migrant Marseille: Architectures of Social Segregation and Urban Inclusivity (2020). Co-curator of the 12th International Architecture Biennale of São Paulo (2019), she also co-authored Some Haunted Spaces in Singapore (Edition Patrick Frey) and Eileen Gray: A House under the Sun. Charlotte is a founding member of the Parity Group and Front, activist networks dedicated to improving gender equality and equity in architecture.
4:30 – 6:00 PM
4An Eviscerated Goldfinch and Other Examples
Lecture by Cameron Hu, Konrad Lorenz Institute
Writers concerned with the architecture of collective life lately fashion “material” things into examples. What goes on in making an example of something? This is a metatheoretical talk about the fabrication of examples, and about the (political) logics of exemplification that control what we talk about and decline to talk about when we talk about “materiality.” I consider what we are doing with our examples of “material” life, what we are presupposing through them, and the compulsions and entailments of doing and presupposing like so; examined, these compulsions and entailments invite reconsideration of disreputable concepts of fate, tragedy, and necessity; that invitation leads, in turn, to an uncomfortable idea about the intimacy of knowledge and destruction. I dramatize this consideration of conceptual practice through a series of examples real and fictional, ethnographic and canonical, drawn from past and future work—the first of which is a poor joke about an ill-fated goldfinch.
Cameron Hu is an anthropologist of technoscientific capitalism and liberal empire. His ethnographic and historical research focuses on the multinational oil corporation, the disciplines of the earth sciences, and liberal grammars of historicity, futurity, and action; his theoretical work considers the provocations of ordinary language philosophy and psychoanalysis for social thought. He has published widely in forums for critical theory, science studies, art criticism, and literary nonfiction. With the LiCo collective he produces fictions and films, most lately the video “This Extraordinary Rock,” shown at Het Nieuw Instituut in Rotterdam. Cameron received a PhD in Anthropology from the University of Chicago in 2021, and is currently postdoctoral fellow at the Konrad Lorenz Institute (Austria). He is at work on an ethnography, Knowing Destroying: The Geopolitics of Fracking and the Metaphysics of Imperialism.

For additional information, please contact:

Michaela Büsse

Associate Researcher
Humboldt University Berlin
Institute for Cultural History and Theory
Visiting Researcher
TU Delft, Faculty of Architecture and the Built Environment
Delta Urbanism Research Group


Taneha Kuzniecow Bacchin
Assistant Professor Urban Design Theory and Methods
TU Delft, Faculty of Architecture and the Built Environment
Delta Urbanism Research Group

Online Session:
Join Zoom Meeting: Please register with an email to t.bacchin[at]