Founded in 2007, the Georg-Simmel-Centre for Metropolitan Studies engages an interdisciplinary perspective to investigate the complexity of cities. Therefore, research activities and projects within the Georg-Simmel-Centre are based in different academic disciplines and use inter- and transdisciplinary approaches including co-operation with partners outside academia, both locally and internationally. Research fields include Cultural Heritage and Transformation of Industrial Sites, Community Building and Urban Commons, New Urban Tourism, Public Urban Space and Interventions, Gentrification, as well as Social and Institutional Innovation. The Centre is supported by the Geography Department, the Institute for European Ethnology and the Institute of Sociology at the Humboldt University. At OpenHeritage, the Georg-Simmel-Centre focuses as a work package leader on developing the transferability of project insights to be usefully applied elsewhere. It also studies the current regulatory framework guiding the adaptive re-use of heritage assets and works on policy recommendations.
Dr. Heike Oevermann studied Architecture (Dipl.-Ing.) and World Heritage Studies (MA), worked for several years as architect and planner, her PhD was awarded 2012, acknowledging the research work “Using industrial heritage”, and she is now vice-director at the GSZ for Metropolitan Studies. She has conducted research on the transformation of industrial heritage sites throughout Europe, focusing on heritage conservation, urban transformation, policies and planning processes. Case studies were from UK, Norway, Italy, France, Switzerland, Hungary, Ukraine, Russia, India and Germany. Currently, she works on a transfer of knowledge-project on urban development and industrial UNESCO World Heritage sites, developing criteria and evaluation on good practice in heritage management.
Markus Kip completed his PhD in sociology as well as a graduate diploma in German and European Studies at York University, Toronto (2016), a MA in sociology at the New School for Social Research, New York City (2004) and a BA in philosophy and theology at the Munich School of Philosophy, SJ. Since July 2018, he works as a researcher at the Georg-Simmel-Centre. He is the co-editor of “Urban Commons. Moving beyond State and Market” published in 2015 (Bauwelt Fundamente). His main areas of interest include architectural sociology, commons, urban heritage, migration and work, solidarity.