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Personal profile

Personal profile

I am a geographer and holding a chair in Infrastructuring Urban Futures at the Urban and Regional Planning and Geo-Information Management department at the Faculty of Geo-Information Science and Earth Observation. Prior to my appointment at ITC in 2017 I worked at the Department of Human Geography, Planning and International Development Studies of the University of Amsterdam (the NL) in various positions, ranging from postdoctoral researcher to Associate Professor. I obtained my PhD in Physical Geography from Utrecht University, the Netherlands.

Research interests

I am holding the chair Infrastructuring Urban Futures in the Research theme PLUS – People, Land and Urban Systems. 

The chair analyses past and present developments of urban processes, and develops scientific methods, approaches and tools to sketch, simulate and analyse urban futures in a collaborative planning environment. The term infrastructuring emphasizes the important relationship between urban development, infrastructures and services (e.g. transport, energy, water, telecommunication, etc.), and it expresses the need to rethink and innovate the way cities are managed and developed. The pressure on urban planners to re-invent their practices raises the question of how research can engage with, and participate in, the development of new urban planning practices which address issues of urban sustainability and the tension between efficiency and inequality. Therefore, the chair investigates how urban governance actors (state, corporates, citizens, academia) develop, organize and practice access to urban infrastructure (transport, energy, water, sewage, etc) and how Geo-T can enhance the planning of and access to urban infrastructures balancing sectorial and social priorities. It combines quantitative, spatial (GIS and Remote Sensing techniques) and qualitative methods and employs a multi-stakeholder perspective to generate information and knowledge from different data sources in urban areas and investigate its use in urban governance and planning processes. 

My specific research topics are:

  • Urban infrastructures and infrastructuring
  • Urban planning support
  • Urban poverty and spatial inequalities
  • Mapping and analyzing urban deprivations / slum areas
  • Urbanisation patterns and processes
  • Sensorial environment of urban public spaces
  • Smart urbanism and urban lifestyles
  • Urban remote sensing
  • Geo-technologies and digital technologies
  • Geographic information analysis and spatial knowledge
  • Participatory mapping / qualitative GIS

 

Projects

Currently I am involved in the following research projects:

 

2019-2022 INECIS Informal Economies and Creative Industry strategies - Governance arrangements, socio-spatial dynamics and informal economies in urban kampongs in Indonesia

INECIS investigates the relationship between the informal economies of kampongs and formal creative industries strategies, and how these impact the spatial, social and economic development of kampongs. It is funded by NWO-wotro (Indonesia-The Netherlands Cooperation).

2016-2020 A New Urban Epoch? Alternative ways to measure urbanization using VHR remote sensing data

This PhD project explores the potential of Very High Resolution satellite images to research urbanization processes and patterns of small towns at the rural-urban transition and provide alternative measures and conceptualizations of contemporary urbanization. 

2016-2019: CODALoop - Community Data-Loops for energy-efficient urban lifestyles

CODALoop aims at enabling behavioural change in energy use through the design, implementation and assessment of learning and behavioural adaptation feedback loops, supported by a web-based platform through which qualitative and quantitative data are shared.

More information at: http://aissr.uva.nl/research/externally-funded-projects/sites/content13/codaloop/codaloop.html 

2016-2019: DynaSlum: Data Driven Modelling and Decision Support for Slums

DynaSlum processes very high-resolution remote sensing images and builds high-resolution agent-based models that can describe the growth dynamics of slums in Bangalore. – More information at: http://www.dynaslum.com 

2014-2018: Inclusive partnerships and innovation platforms for sustainable landscapes and greater food sovereignty among tree crop farmers in Ghana and South Africa

The related PhD project that I supervise within this project focuses on the effects of tree-crop farming on the mosaic landscape employing remote-sensing based land use change detection as well as participatory GIS. More information at: https://inclusivevcc.wordpress.com

2014-2018: Sound and the city: The nature of the interaction between patterns of human activity and sound in public spaces

This PhD project investigates how activity influences the way how people interpret and evaluate the auditory environment of urban public spaces and how the auditory environment of an urban public spaces affords particular activities in these spaces.

 

Before I was involved in:

  • Co-editing the book on Geographies of Urban Governance: http://www.springer.com/us/book/9783319212715
  • SIM-City project on agent-based complex network system to interactively explore socio-economic scenarios that can support decision makers of large urban areas, notably Bangalore in India. This project is closely related to Dynaslum.
  • The European project chance2sustain researching how governments and citizens in cities with differing patterns of urban economic growth make use of participatory (or integrated) spatial knowledge management to direct urban governance towards more sustainable development. http://www.chance2sustain.eu
  • Investigating the role of spatial information infrastructures for tackling urban poverty in Indian cities
  • Setting up a regional monitoring system for the region of Amsterdam
  • A European research network for the application of Geomorphology and Environmental Impact Assessment to Transport Systems.

 

I am supervising the following PhD projects

  • Sergio Alvarado Vazquez, Infrastructuring public spaces through social participation and PGIS technologies in local communities
  • Mark Brussel, Measuring socio-spatial equity in transport
  • Fenna Hoefsloot, The politics of ‘smart’ infrastructuring: water distribution in Lima, Peru 
  • Rosa Aguilar, Supporting inclusive and collaborative planning: toward community engagement
  • Robbin-Jan van Duijne, A New Urban Epoch? Alternative ways to measure urbanization using VHR remote sensing data
  • Beatrix Revilla Pineda, Enabling Sustainable Energy Lifestyles through ‘Learning and Behaviour Adaptation’ Feedback Loops in urban communities
  • Edda Bild, Sound and the city: The nature of the interaction between patterns of human activity and sound in public spaces
  • Guowei Lyu, The impacts of different types of Transit Oriented Developments (TODs) on land use, spatial accessibility, and commuting time in the Chinese context
  • Kwabena Asuboteng, The impacts of different types of Transit Oriented Developments (TODs) on land use, spatial accessibility, and commuting time in the Chinese context
  • Julius Muchemi, Domestication of International Environmental Policy in Developing Countries: Linking Community and National Monitoring of UNFCCC REDD+ Policy Mechanism in Kenya
  • Liliana Miranda Sara, Knowledge building in configuring metropolitan water governance

 

Earlier, I have supervised the following PhD projects

  • Christine Richter (2014), Digital transformations in Indian cities: between paper list and GIS map
  • Tara van Dijk (2014), Sub-altern Urbanism in India Beyond the Mega-City slum
  • Monika Kuffer (2017), Spatial patterns of deprivation in cities of the global south in very high-resolution imagery
  • Kirstin Conti (2017), Norms in multi-level groundwater governance and sustainable development
  • Tara Saharan (2018), Livelihood trajectories in sub-standard settlements in Durban, South Africa and Chennai, India

External positions

20092016

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics where Karin Pfeffer is active. These topic labels come from the works of this person. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • 12 Similar Profiles
slum Social Sciences
poverty Earth & Environmental Sciences
livelihood Social Sciences
governance Social Sciences
megacity Social Sciences
informal settlement Earth & Environmental Sciences
accessibility Earth & Environmental Sciences
India Social Sciences

Network Recent external collaboration on country level. Dive into details by clicking on the dots.

Research Output 2000 2019

2 Citations (Scopus)
9 Downloads (Pure)

Access or Accessibility? A Critique of the Urban Transport SDG Indicator

Brussel, M. J. G., Zuidgeest, M., Pfeffer, K. & Van Maarseveen, M. F. A. M., 30 Jan 2019, In : ISPRS international journal of geo-information. 8, 2, p. 67-90 67.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Open Access
File
urban transport
accessibility
Sustainable development
sustainable development
Urban transportation

An Exploratory Study on the Influence of Activities on Public Space Users' Descriptions of Their Auditory Environments on Site: The Case of Amsterdam

Bild, E., Pfeffer, K., Coler, M. & Bertolini, L., 1 May 2019, In : Acta Acustica United with Acustica. 105, 3, p. 449-463 15 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

semantics
psycholinguistics
coding
Amsterdam
Hearing
1 Citation (Scopus)

Comparing governance and bargaining of livelihoods in informal settlements in Chennai and eThekwini

Saharan, T., Pfeffer, K., Baud, I. & Scott, D., 2 Mar 2019, (Accepted/In press) In : Cities. 8 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

informal settlement
bargaining
livelihood
governance
trajectory
25 Downloads (Pure)

Contextualizing Planning Support (Systems): Co-designing to fit the dynamics of spatial strategy making

Champlin, C. J., 21 Aug 2019, Enschede: Universiteit Twente. 172 p.

Research output: ThesisPhD Thesis - Research UT, graduation UTAcademic

Open Access
File
spatial planning
facilitation
communication
thesis
planning

Do we underestimate the global slum population?

Kuffer, M., Persello, C., Pfeffer, K., Sliuzas, R. & Rao, V., 1 May 2019, 2019 Joint Urban Remote Sensing Event, JURSE 2019. IEEE, p. 1-4 4 p. 8809066. (2019 Joint Urban Remote Sensing Event, JURSE 2019).

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionAcademicpeer-review

slum
Remote sensing
estimates
Unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV)
remote sensing