Professor Karin Pfeffer

Trustee tenure: 2024-Present

University of Twente,
Faculty Geo-Information and Earth Observation,
Department of Urban and Regional Planning and Geo-Information Management,
Hallenweg 8,
7522 NH Enschede,
Netherlands | Profile at University of Twente

Profile of Professor Karin Pfeffer

Karin Pfeffer is a geographer by training and has been working in the field of urban studies since 2003. She obtained her PhD degree in Physical Geography from Utrecht University, the NL, in 2003, after which she joined the Human Geography department at the University of Amsterdam till 2017. In May 2017, she was appointed Chair of Infrastructuring Urban Futures at the University of Twente. Her chair investigates how urban governance actors develop, organize and practice access to urban infrastructure (transport, water, public space, etc) and how geo-spatial data, methods and tools can enhance the planning of and access to urban infrastructures, balancing sectorial and social priorities. It combines quantitative, spatial 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 (interactive) planning processes.

Over the years, she has developed and worked on various national and international research projects. She was involved in setting up a regional monitoring system for the metropolitan region of Amsterdam; investigated the role of spatial information infrastructures for tackling urban poverty in Indian cities; analysed how governments and citizens in cities with differing patterns of urban economic growth make use of spatial knowledge management to direct urban governance towards more sustainable development; and contributed to mapping deprived urban settlements using remote sensing based approaches. In the past few years, projects have focused on processes and practices of (co-) developing urban infrastructures, including public spaces, through collaborative knowledge production and participatory geo-spatial methods and planning support tools.

She has supervised and supervises MSc students, PhD candidates and postdoc researchers on urbanization, mapping, modelling and analysis of different types of urban settlements, urban participatory research (auditory environment, energy needs, water provision, public space), (peri-) urban resilience, water governance and knowledge building processes, and transportation. Currently, she teaches in the Master of Geo-Information and Earth Observation and Spatial Engineering on topics of urbanization, infrastructure planning and spatial knowledge management.