Nathalie Jean-Baptiste (Germany / Tanzania)

With great enthusiasm, I am applying for the position of IAPS Board Member 2016. I am keen to contribute more actively to the Board’s activities. My research focuses on vulnerability assessment and climate related risks in low-income countries and the relationship between infrastructure, people and the environment. One stream of research investigates waste and sanitation behaviour through the lens on everyday experiences of solid waste and waste water management in places with infrastructure deficiencies. My current project ACTUS ( aims at expending our understanding on multiple spheres of livelihoods, risk reduction and people’s initiatives that act as a stimulus for sustainable growth.

As a member of IAPS for some years, I place a particular focus on people ability to cope with adverse situations and to recover despite disadvantageous socio-economic settings. This implies a new form of normality framed outside traditional city development models. My work therefore addresses human settlement development in all its complexity, which echoes the core objective of IAPS.

My contribution is to bring a different set of competence and expertise to the board. I am an architect graduated in Mexico City. I hold a Master of Science and a Doctorate in Urban Studies from the Bauhaus University in Weimar. I worked at the Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research (UFZ) in Leipzig closely with sociologists, ecologists, economists, lawyers, geographers and political scientists for the last 5 years. I recently joined the Technical University of Darmstadt and Ardhi University in Dar es Salaam within the frame of a Marie Curie Global Fellowship to investigate African Cities in transition. Hence my multidisciplinary and international background relates to the diverse forum of scholars in IAPS. For more details on my research experience please go to the following link:

More concretely, the areas of expertise I could contribute to the IAPS board are:

  • Knowledge of and experience in urban studies and the interrelations between people and their built and natural habitat.
  • Expertise in building networks with the industry, stakeholders, government bodies, funding agencies and maintaining presence of IAPS in international forums
  • Practice in dealing with lack of or limited financial/human resources. This is particularly relevant when reaching to emerging contexts (e.g. Africa, and Latin America) and exploring opportunities for expanding IAPS
  • Capacity in dissemination, network and outreach activities (e.g conceptualisation, preparation and participation of international events, conferences, symposiums, workshops).
  • Fluency in French, Creole, Spanish, English and a good level of German and basic Swahili. These languages are a great tool for communication and making a case for a more prominent presence of IAPS

Finally, I focus on how things work. In the case of IAPS, my motivation lies in making the Association Bolder and Better. I think it is Big enough. I believe my energy and grit can be put to good use within the IAPS board.


Dr. Nathalie Jean-Baptiste is an active and dynamic researcher who is currently based in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania as a holder of the prestigious Marie Curie Global Fellowship. Since she took the role of conveyor of housing network in 2013, she had brought a new momentum in the discussion on housing bringing her expertise in vulnerability assessment and promoting resilience of the housing sector in time of global environmental change.

Her extensive international experience and network (Australia, Germany, Mexico and Tanzania) is just what we need in the board, in a time where we have to deal with complex goals to interact with policymakers, put people-environment studies in the international agendas, and reinforce the research work of many disciplines within IAPS.


Dr .Nathalie Jean-Baptisste Succeede dr Roderick Lawrence and myself as coordinator FOR THE IAPS HOUISNG NETOWRK a few years ago. In this role she has taken many initiatives to develop network activites, including plans for a network symposium in 2017. She is now affiliated to Ardhi

Universitiy in Dares Salaam where she is doing research on a European Union Scholarship. Sub-Saharan Africa is experiencing the world’s fastest urban growth and her contacts in this region has the potential to bring new perspectives to the IAPS community.