Birgit Hausleitner

Being educated as urbanist and architect, I place great emphasis on working through the scales, from the building to the city region. In research and education, I work on the interrelation between urban structure and urban programme, with a particular focus on the economic layer of cities, mixed-use, and urban diversity. From a metropolitan (spatial) perspective, my research concerns the systemic understanding and reinterpretation of centralities and borders and their local manifestation and (changing) societal meaning. In all topics, integrating a systemic and place-based understanding is crucial for addressing urban complexity. I am concerned with developing multi-scalar and multi-actor analytic and design instruments needed to work in complex conditions, such as urban environments. Preparing adaptable urban conditions, last but not least, is crucial to accommodate emerging, including unforeseen, urban activities embedded in the dynamics of changing economies and demographic shifts.

Central topics which link graduation projects I supervise to research I am concerned with:

  • (shifting) Local centres in changing metropolitan regions – You can think about metropolitan growth or transformation projects or the concept of the 15-minute city, which I currently address in two running research projects.
  • Emerging new forms of how we live and work based upon new forms of work/economy/climate transition
  • Density-driven projects: built density linked to different performances such as: environmental (heat island effect or balancing space for water and the housing demand) or societal (inclusive cities, shifting locations of settlements). In all cases, densification is seen as an opportunity to enhance/enable other aspects of urban life.

Fieldwork and design explorations, driven by trends and looking into extremes, are used to envision different possible future evolutions of the city. In all projects, I see it relevant to address multiple scales – from the region to the local street and time, to understand and work with system dynamics.

Main methods: Design is always approached multi-scalar. In the analytic aspect, qualitative fieldwork, design testing, as well as advanced spatial analysis, including Space Syntax analyses, are integrated. Design and analysis are blending in scenario-driven spatial analyses, design pattern development and evidence-informed design. Tools used: urban spatial morphology analysis (primarily spatial network and density analysis, including space syntax), spatial statistics to discover regularities in space-activity relations, fieldwork observations for people’s behaviour, and place characteristics.

Exemplary thesis projects:

These projects are representative in their application of methods I encourage students I mentor to work with.

Metropolitan structure, shifting centralities, 15-minute city

Emerging spaces of working-living, circularity

Social diversity, inclusive cities, communities, multi-scalar 

Environmental resilience and metropolization, heat island, flooding, built density

  • For a wider range of projects, please consult the library repository.

Relevant projects and publications of my own research relating to mixed-use and understanding and designing cities from a performative perspective:

(for further projects/publications, take a look at my profile at

Everyday Streets.  Research on the reading, interpreting and designing of inclusive urban environments in a variety of cities (2020-2022). You can download the open-access book for free here: Everyday Streets. Inclusive approaches to understanding and designing streets. Edited by Agustina Martire, Birgit Hausleitner, and Jane Clossick. London: UCL Press (2023)

Cities of Making JPI Urban Europe Project – Project concerned with building up an understanding of and developing (design) guidelines for urban conditions to facilitate manufacturing in European cities. (2017-2020)


Martire, A., Hausleitner B., Clossick, J. (eds.) (2023)  Everyday Streets. Inclusive approaches to
understanding and designing streets. London: UCL Press.

Hausleitner B., Hill A., Domenech T., Muñoz Sanz V. (2022) Urban Manufacturing for Circularity: Three Pathways to Move from Linear to Circular Cities. In: Amenta L., Russo M., van Timmeren A. (eds) Regenerative Territories. GeoJournal Library, vol 128. Springer, Cham.

Wandl, A, Hausleitner, B. (2021) Investigating functional mix in Europe’s dispersed urban areas. Environment and Planning B. Urban Analytics and City Science.

Unceta, P., Hausleitner, B., & Dąbrowski, M. (2020). Socio-Spatial Segregation and the Spatial Structure of ‘Ordinary’ Activities in the Global South. Urban Planning, 5(3), 303-318. doi:

Hill, Adrian V (ed.). (2020) Foundries of the Future: a Guide to 21st Century Cities of Making. With contributions by: Ben Croxford, Teresa Domenech, Birgit Hausleitner, Adrian Vickery Hill, Han Meyer, Alexandre Orban, Victor Muñoz Sanz, Fabio Vanin and Josie Warden. Delft. TU Delft Open, 2020. Download it here

Hausleitner, B. (2019) Mixed-Use City: Configurations from Street Network to Building Plot. in: DASH Home Work City. Publisher: Nai010 publishers. You can access it here

Hausleitner, B., Berghauser Pont, M. (2017). Development of a configurational typology for micro-businesses integrating geometric and configurational variables. Proceedings XI space syntax conference, Lisbon. You can access it here

Berghauser Pont, Stavroulaki, Gil, Marcus, Serra, Hausleitner, Olsson, Abshirini, Dhanani (2017). Quantitative comparison of cities: Distribution of street and building types based on density and centrality measures.  Proceedings XI space syntax conference, Lisbon. You can access it here

Hausleitner, B. (2014) ‘Kleinschalige bedrijvigheid als component van vitale steden’, in Meyer, H., Westrik, J., and Hoekstra, M. (eds) Het programma en ruimtegebruik van de stad. Uitgeverij Bom, pp. 108–125

Hausleitner, B. (2012) Re-Using the built material. In book: Recycling City: lifecycles, embodied energy, inclusion, Chapter: PART 3: RECYCLING TERRITORIES, Publisher: Giavedoni editore, Pordenone, Editors: Fabian L, Giannotti E., Vigano P., pp.p. 258-267