Iman Charara

Iman Charara


Iman Charara joined URBANgrad in 2017. She studied architecture at the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology and trained in architecture offices in Switzerland, before pursuing her Master’s degree in architecture and urban planning at the TU Berlin. In Berlin, she was part of several social initiatives working towards facilitating living conditions for asylum seekers, including hands-on participatory building projects. With an extensive focus on the socio-political dimension of spatial planning, she worked on different collaborative research projects with international academic partners in Egypt, Tunisia, Jordan and Iran. Her research topics of interest are: urban transformation in crisis and conflict situations, collective urban design, informal development of urban spaces, arrival cities, alternative housing forms and affordable housing. She currently teaches at the Chair of Design and Urbanism (Prof. Dr. Nina Gribat) at the TU Darmstadt.

PhD project

Building upon the research she conducted on emergent socio-spatial patterns in the aftermath of post-war bomb attacks in Greater Beirut, Iman Charara is examining in her PhD research the urban impacts of proliferating long-term urban securitization following the recent terror attacks in European cities.

Professional experience (Selection)

2017 – today Researcher and Lecturer at the Chair of Design & Urbanism at the Faculty of Architecture of the TU Darmstadt, Germany.
2016 – 2017 Teaching and Coordination Assistant in the project “RealCityLab: Building Communities through Cooperative Housing in Cairo” at the TU Berlin and Helwan University in Cairo, Egypt. Funded by the DAAD and BMZ.
2016 Coordination and Teaching Assistant in the project “Informal Settlements: From Ashwaeyat in Cairo to Habitat Spontané in Tunis” at the TU Berlin in collaboration with IUSD Ain-Shams University Cairo and École Supérieure d’Audiovisuel et de Design Tunis, Tunisia. Funded by the DAAD Transformationspartnerschaften Program.
2016 – today Freelancer in Architecture, Research and Design. Based in Berlin, Germany.
2015 – 2017 Student Research Assistant (with teaching tasks) at the Habitat Unit, Chair of International Urbanism and Design at the Architecture Faculty of the TU Berlin, Germany
2014 Coordination Assistant in the project “Community Mapping and Urban Regeneration in Tehran”. TU Berlin in collaboration with Iran University of Science and Technology in Tehran, Iran. Funded by the DAAD Program: Hochschuldialog mit der islamischen Welt.
2013 Architectural Traineeship at Herzog & de Meuron Basel Ltd., Basel, Switzerland.
2012 Architectural Internship at Max Dudlder AG, Zurich, Switzerland.

University Studies

2013 –2016 Master of Sciences in Architecture & Urban Planning at the Technical University Berlin, Germany. Thesis project: „Casual Bombs in Beirut: Emergent Socio-Spatial Patterns in the Aftermath of Post-war Bomb Attacks in Greater Beirut”. Supervised by Prof. Dr. Philipp Misselwitz and Prof. Dr. Martina Löw.
2014 – 2015 DesignBuild Studio Cairo, Pilot Project of the European DesignBuild Knowledge Network in with collaboration with the German University in Cairo, Egypt.
2009 –2012 Bachelor of Sciences in Architecture at the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, Germany.


2016 DAAD Award 2016 for outstanding foreign students at the TU Berlin
2013-2016 Heinrich Böll Stiftung Full scholarship for the Master’s studies
2013 Kölner Gymnasial- & Stiftungsfonds Financial aid for university studies


• With Philipp Misselwitz (2018) Beirut Potato Plan. In: Christiaanse, Kees and Züger, Mirjam (eds.) The Potato Plan Collection; 40 Cities Through the Lens of Patrick Abercombie. Nai010 Publishers, Rotterdam.

• Arrival City from Dhaka, Bangladesh to Berlin, Germany (2015). In: Engel, Ludwig and Hehl, Rainer (eds.) Berlin-Transfer: Learning from the Global South. Ruby Press Berlin