Complex Cities Supervisors 2018/19

(in alphabetical order)

Akkelies van Nes

Akkelies-van-NesDr. Akkelies van Nes is part of the Metropolitan spatial structures and Urban fabrics research theme groups. She develops and applies various tools for analyzing spatial structures, from the neighbourhood scale level up to the metropolitan level. Her research focuses on the relationship between space, crime and anti-social behavior in urban areas.  She is also interested in economic development, the identity of places, sustainable mobility and the role of various involved actors in planning and urban transformation processes.

Students Akkelies has supervised:

Arie Romein


Dr. Arie Romein is part of the section Urban and Regional Development of OTB. He did his MSc and PhD in the academic field of urban geography of developing countries (the Global South), based  on field research in West Africa and Central America. His current main field of interest is the ‘production’ of urban space, both physical, economic and social space and how these are interconnected. This includes the question how the production of space (spatial structures) is influenced by urban policies and planning. The currently dominant neo-liberal type of policies and planning across the globe have led to trends in cities like skyrocketing social inequality cum socio-spatial dislocation and emerging new clusters of economic accumulation. Arie is not only interested in these trends, but also how to counterbalance these trends, including the potentials in this respect of planning and design. He has in particular a track record in research of creative and cultural industries, including the re-use of obsolete low-value real estate by entrepreneurs in these industries. Besides, Arie is an experienced lecturer in methodology, both qualitative and quantitative, of empirical research in social sciences, an integral part of graduation projects indeed.

Students Arie has supervised:

Diego Andres Sepulveda Carmona

Diego-SepulvedaDr. Diego Sepulveda is a designer and a regional planner. He works as teacher and senior researcher at the department of Urbanism at Delft University of Technology. Diego is an active researcher in the Complex cities and Delta urbanism research groups. He also works as guest professor at several institutions, among them Buenos Aires University, Stuttgart University, SLU Malmo, Pontifical Universidad Católica de Chile and SPA University in Delhi, India. His main research topics are strategies to integrate the development of marginalized areas into metropolisation processes, with an emphasis on design and planning perspectives and tools. His main interest is the relation between societal processes and spatial planning, particularly in emerging and fast development regions. Diego is experienced in infrastructural development, socio spatial integration (with special interest into fast transformative economies and the integration of the changing social dynamics) and interrelation between planning and spatial structures. Lately his work focuses on how to integrate climate change adaptation and mitigation strategies within a developing context.
Diego’s work has been part of several studies, conducted by academia, multilateral agencies (such as the World Bank and the Inter-American Developing Bank) and governmental institutions (Diego is an active consultant for ministry of Infrastructure and the Environmental in The Nederland on issues of Mega cities-India-China-Brazil). His publications are diverse. The New Urban Questions (IFOU 2010) is among the most significant ones. Currently he coordinates the Urbanism Master Lab at the faculty of Architecture and the Build Environment, Delft University of Technology.

Dominic Stead

Dominic-SteadDr. Dominic Stead has expertise in urban and regional policies and their governance, particularly in relation to urban transport issues and climate change. He is interested in processes of policy transfer and learning between administrations, and in comparing and understanding the reasons why urban and regional policies and governance arrangements differ between territories.


Students Dominic has supervised:

Evert Meijers

Evert-MeijersDr. Evert Meijers studies urban and regional development from a multidisciplinary perspective, combining insights from economic and urban geography, urban planning, environmental studies, regional science, cultural geography and policy sciences. He believes that this multi-disciplinarity is key to innovation and essential to fully understand the evolution of cities and regions, their spatial layout and spatial structure, as well as how these cities relate to each other. Moreover, he considers it essential to establish a link between the way we spatially organize our cities and territory and their performance in terms of economic competitiveness, environmental sustainability and social well-being. Much of his research aims to provide empirical findings addressing this link and to translate these findings into empirically underpinned development strategies and spatial designs with a focus on promoting more competitive and attractive urban regions.

Gregory Bracken

BRACKEN-290x290_CCDr. Ir. Gregory Bracken is an assistant professor at the chair of Spatial Planning and Strategy. He got his Dip.Arch. and B.Sc.Arch. at the Dublin Institute of Technology. He then worked in Southeast Asia for 10 years before coming to TU Delft to do an M.Sc.Arch. (with a specialisation in urbanism). He then went on to do a Ph.D. in TU Delft, subsequently working at the Architecture Theory section before moving to Urbanism in 2016. While at TU Delft he co-founded the Footprint journal, and from 2009-2015 he was a research fellow at the International Institute for Asian Studies (IIAS) Leiden where he set up (with Dr. Manon Ossewijer) the Urban Knowledge Network Asia (UKNA) with a 1.2 million grant from Marie Curie Actions. Gregory is author or editor of 16 books, including the popular Walking Tour series of architectural guides to Asian cities, as well as The Shanghai Alleyway House: A Vanishing Urban Vernacular (translated into Chinese), Asian Cities: Colonial to Global, and Aspects of Urbanization in China: Shanghai, Hong Kong, Guangzhou.

Students Gregory has supervised:

Qu Lei

Qu-LeiDr QU Lei is part of the International planning and developing regions research theme group. Her expertise is in urban regeneration strategies, especially on revitalisation of decaying neighbourhoods in historical inner city or post-war districts, where housing and public space could be used as tools to reinforce socio-spatial integration. She is also interested in urban analysis on socio-economic transformation processes of the cities and institutional design that could facilitate new ways of planning, which are both related to a thorough understanding of the development modes.

Students Lei has supervised:

Marcin Dabrowski

Marcin-Dabrowsky-ROUNDDr. Marcin Dąbrowski is a post-doctoral research fellow at the Chair of Spatial Planning and Strategy. He has a background in political science and regional studies, while his research interests range from urban and regional development policies, multi-level and regional governance, stakeholder participation, to urban climate change adaptation and energy transition. His current research focuses on two themes: (1) climate change adaptation in delta cities in the Netherlands and China, and (2) the social acceptance of renewable energy infrastructure in European regions.

Students Marcin has supervised:

Rachel Keeton

Rachel_Keeton_webRachel Keeton is a PhD candidate in the Design as Politics chair. An architect by training, her expertise is in contemporary New Towns (planned cities) in Asia and Africa. She is the author of Rising in the East: Contemporary New Towns in Asia(SUN 2011), and co-editor of To Build a City in Africa: A History and Manual(nai010 forthcoming 2018). Her current research focuses on the development and application of adaptive planning principles for future New Towns in Africa. She is interested in questions related to postcolonial urbanization processes and the exploration of alternative methods that reflect the complexity of urban development in low-resource settings.

Students Rachel has supervised:

Peiran Yu (2018) Controllable territory: Young professional friendly liveable neighbourhood

Roberto Rocco

roberto-rocco-green-shirt-2-2016-roundDr. Roberto Rocco  is a spatial planner, designer and researcher in planning theory, governance and sustainability at the Section of Spatial Planning and Strategy of the Delft University of Technology (TU Delft). He has a diploma in architecture and planning by the University of São Paulo, a Master in spatial planning by the same university and holds a PhD by TU Delft. He has also a specialisation in spatial planning in developing countries by the Institut Français d’Urbanisme. Roberto has worked as a researcher at the University of Hertfordshire (UK) on a project investigating the relationship between design practice and academic research. His research interests include multi-level governance issues in regional planning and the emergence of complex networked city-regions, sustainability and spatial justice. A special focus lies on studies of metropolitan and regional governance of energy and water resources and the sustainability of these governance structures. Roberto is interested in concepts of spatial justice and the right to the city as crucial concepts that allow for a broader definition of planning tasks and for the emergence of new roles for planners in networked governance structures.

The study of urbanisation processes in the Global South has led to interest in informal urbanisation and the organisation of several events, including the URBAN THINKERS CAMPUS Education for the City We Need and the CONFRONTING INFORMALITY Symposium. Roberto is also one of the leaders of the AFRICA INITIATIVE at Bouwkunde.

He is responsible for courses on research methodology and planning and design studios and has published several articles on the subjects enumerated above. More information can be found here.

Students Roberto has supervised:

Rodrigo Viseu Cardoso


Dr. Rodrigo Cardoso is an architect and planner (BSc Porto, MSc Barcelona) and currently a post-doctoral researcher in the Urban and Regional Development programme at TU Delft. He co-developed and co-directs the faculty’s MSc Urban Geography elective course. Rodrigo completed his PhD at the Bartlett School of Planning in London on the topic of metropolisation processes in second-tier urban regions in Europe. Building on his diverse background, he pursues an interdisciplinary approach in his research, gathering insights from planning, design, policy, governance and various fields of geography. His research interests include the spatial, functional, cultural and political dimensions of the metropolisation processes as cities are reshaped into urban regions; the distinctive history, spatial and socioeconomic structures and development strategies of European urban regions within a densely networked, polycentric urban system; and the links between the processes of agglomeration and urbanisation and the human cognitive and cultural features shaping our understanding of urban space and the attractiveness of cities.

Rodrigo can be involved as a 2nd mentor of Complex cities graduations.

Remon Rooij

remon_rooijDr.ir. Remon Rooij is associate professor Spatial Planning & Strategy and he is the faculty of Architecture & the Built Environment bachelor programme leader. Remon has a strong interdisciplinary background: a doctorate in spatial planning within the TRAIL research school for Transport, Infrastructure and Logistics and an MSc degree in Urban Design & Planning and Real Estate & Construction Management. His interests focus on (strategic) spatial planning in urban development and transformation from a multimodal mobility, transport and infrastructure point of view, including health and sports.

Students Remon has supervised:

Stephen Read

Stephen-Read-2011Dr. Stephen Read is interested in appropriate (local) development ideas in the context of the current convergence of environmental and equity crises. He pursues this through authors (Samir Amin; Arturo Escobar; Walter Mignolo) who discuss the de-colonisation and de-westernisation of development theory. He emphasises region and place specific solutions and the ‘indigenous’ development literatures of Africa, South America, India and China. He brings to the task a historical-material and urban theory of space and development and an eco-marxist (Jason Moore; John Bellamy Foster) consideration of the metabolic and entropy effects of development. He is interested also in equivalent problems in Europe as well as in the ‘world citification’ of cities the world over with associated problems of gentrification, public space privatisation, inequality and dispossession.

Students Stephen has supervised:

Verena Balz

Verena-Balzir. Verena Balz is part of the research theme group Regional Planning, Governance and Design. Her expertise is in regional design. She is interested in the role and use of ideas about spatial organisation in the context of regional governance, specifically in the Randstad Holland and North West Europe. In her PhD research she investigates how ideas change when they are taken up for political and managerial purposes.

Students Verena has supervised:

Vincent Nadin

Vincent-Nadin-ROUNDProfessor Vincent Nadin is Professor of Spatial Planning and Strategy, Chair of the Spatial Planning Section in Urbanism and Visiting Distinguished Professor at the School of Architecture, South China University of Technology. Vincent is keen to understand and make international comparisons of how planning systems contribute to shaping cities and urban form; and on comparative tools for urban planning and citizen engagement. He is leading international research projects on the changing role of urban planning in heritage conservation and place identity.

Students Vincent has supervised:

Wil Zonneveld


Professor Wil Zonneveld is Professor of Urban and Regional Planning and member of the Spatial Planning group of urbanism. Wil is highly interested in planning at regional and national scales and within metropolitan areas. How do governmental agencies, societal actors and civil society in general work together to develop integrated strategies and what is their performance? What role is played by spatial concepts as normative interpretations of spatial and urban structures and how are such concepts used to bring actors together? Wil is particularly interested in planning for metropolitan regions which do not match administrative boundaries, like the metropolitan region Rotterdam-The Hague in the Netherlands and many other regions across the globe.

Students Vincent has supervised:


One thought on “Mentors

  1. Pingback: Graduation orientation – Spring 2017. | Planning Change: Complex Cities TU Delft

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