Somayeh Chitchian, 2015-2019
Somayeh Chitchian was a doctoral fellow at the Department of Socio-Cultural Diversity. She is also a doctoral student at Harvard University, Graduate School of Design and a research fellow at the Urban Theory Lab (Harvard GSD). Her research focuses on the extended corridors of migratory circulation and uses a logistical lens as both a material and theoretical tool towards a respatialized approach to migration research beyond its inherent methodological nationalism. Chitchian’s work lies at the intersection of critical urban theory, migration research, border- and logistics studies, and is guided by de/postcolonial thought, critical race theory, and radical cartography as its overarching framework of analysis. The central question guiding her doctoral work is: How does the contemporary logistics space (re)produce its political figure on-the-move—i.e., “the migrant”?
Chitchian is a trained architect (B.Arch and M.Arch) from Delft University of Technology in the Netherland and holds a Master in Design Studies degree (MDes) in Critical Conservation (with distinction) from Harvard University Graduate School of Design. Her masters thesis research “Middle Eastern Immigration Landscape in America” won Harvard ESRI Development Center’s Student of the Year Award in 2014. During her years in the Netherlands, she practiced as an architect at several firms in both Amsterdam and The Hague, where she collaborated on various residential and cultural projects, as well as the design of advanced building envelopes. At Harvard, she has held various appointments as teaching and research fellow.
Currently, she is working on her doctoral thesis as a research fellow at the Max Planck Institute.
At the Max Planck Institute, she has been one of the organizers of the workshop:
Inside Out – Outside In: Shifting Architectures of Refugee Inhabitation