Charlotte Malterre-Barthes


Charlotte Malterre-Barthes is an architect and urban designer. She is Director of Studies of the MAS in Urban Design, investigating formal and informal urban dynamics of Cairo, and is involved in research and teaching at the chair of Prof. Dr. Marc Angélil since 2011. She studied at the ENSA in Marseille, at the TU Vienna and at ETHZ. A student of Marc Barani, Erich Raith and Françoise-Héléne Jourda, she interned with Coop Himmelb(l)au in Vienna. Her diploma ‘a Women Social Centre in Baghdad’ obtained magna cum laude tackled political and social involvements of architecture. She collaborated with Rudy Ricciotti, Dipol Landscape Architects and OOS. In India, Charlotte worked with Balkrishna Doshi at Sangath. Apart from her architectural practice, Charlotte co-funded with Noboru Kawagishi OMNIBUS, an urban research laboratory focused on trans-disciplinary metropolitan explorations. She has lectured and taught at the Architectural Foundation in London, the Storefront for Art and Architecture in New York, the University of Ss. Cyrill and Methodius in Skopje and with the AA Visiting School in Alexandria, Egypt.

Recently, she has been a jury member of the Vlora Waterfront Competition (Albania), along with Stefano Boeri, Johan Anrys and Andreas Ruby. She is co-editor of The Book, The School, The Town, with Prof. Dr. Marc Angéli and Something Fantastic (2013, Ruby Press), and published numerous articles in various magazines (San Rocco, TRANS, MAS Context, Horizonte, etc.)


Charlotte Malterre-Barthes is currently working towards a doctoral degree on Food and Territories. She investigates the relationships between food systems and the built environment through the lens of political economy, focusing on the case of Egypt. It is based on the belief that food systems and the factors that influence them at social, economical, and political levels affect architecture, urban form, and territorial organization. To test this premise, the project focuses on Egypt as a paradigmatic case to examine how the food system transforms and is transformed by territory. Aspects of territorial change, which the research address, comprise a series of interrelated issues that serve as examples of acute conditions of spatial transformation. Specifically, three scales of urban and rural transformations related to sub-structures of food supply in Egypt within the last few decades are examined: state-run bakeries in a neighborhood of central Alexandria, informal urban development on agricultural plots in Greater Cairo and the large-scale infrastructure project ‘Toshka’ in Upper Egypt.




(2016) Housing Cairo.The Informal response. Co edited with Marc Angélil. Berlin: Ruby Press.


(2013). The School, the Book, the Town. Co-editor with Marc Angélil, Cary Siress with Something Fantastic. Berlin: Ruby Press


(2011). Hardbrücke- The shadow of the city. In: Hauck, Thomas and Kleinekort, Volker Infrastructural Urbanism. Berlin: DOM publishers.


Refereed publications


(11-2014) Urban informal growth versus agrarian land:  Investigating the built environment at Cairo’s periphery & rethinking the response of design professionals. Conference Paper:  UNHabitat Regional Conference ARCHCAIRO 2014: Responsive Urbanism in Informal Areas, Towards a Regional Agenda for Habitat III, Cairo.



(09-2014) The Alexandria Diaries In: Spaces of Change- Edited by Future Cities Laboratory & Prof. Marc Angélil- Module Territorial Organisation


(09-2014) Cairo: Urbanisation Versus Food Production

In: Spaces of Change- Edited by Future Cities Laboratory & Prof. Marc Angélil- Module Territorial Organisation


(09-2013) The Limits of Control. Informal city versus agricultural land at Cairo’s fringes In: TRANS 23. Zurich: ETHZ


(03-2013) The inexorable finitude of human life (architecture of) In: Horizonte Zeitschrift für Architekturdiskurs. (Ausgabe 6) Weimar: Horizonte


(09-2012). Architecture, gender, disaster In: San Rocco Magazine. Milan: San Rocco.


(09-2012). Skopje, Visibility of the Master Plan In: Gil, Iker. MAS Context. Chicago: MAS Studio. co-authored with Bürgi, Lorenz (OMNIBUS)


(06-2012). Skopje, or How Context Fucked Concepts and Vice Versa" In: San Rocco Magazine. Milan: San Rocco.


(2011). Prostitution, migration, urban territory- case study Zurich. In: Gil, Iker. MAS Context. Chicago: MAS Studio. co-authored with Genini, Valentina (OMNIBUS)


 (2011). Analogies of composition. In: TRANS 19. Zurich: ETHZ. co-authored with Kawagishi, Noboru (OMNIBUS)


 (2010). Prostitution, migration, urban space- case study Zurich’. In: Camenzind. Zurich: Camenzind. co-authored with Genini, Valentina (OMNIBUS)


 (2010). Allotment gardens in Zurich- The Joker of Participation. In: - TRANS 17. Zurich: ETHZ. co-authored with Kawagishi, Noboru (OMNIBUS)


Projects in publications


(2009) In: Cities of Change Addis Ababa, Transformation Strategies for Urban Territories in the 21st Century, ed. by Marc Angélil and Dirk Hebel, Birkhäuser Verlag


(2008) In: Catalogue XI Architecture Biennale Venice. Swiss pavilion Explorations in Architecture: Teaching, Design, Research. Basel : Birkhäuser Verlag für Architektur


(2004) In: Erich Raith (ed.), Lernen von Allentsteig. Konfrontationen mit einer anderen Stadt. Wien, New York: Springer

Contact Information

Neunbrunnenstrasse 50
8050 Zurich


Current position:
Director of Studies, Phd Candidate
Architecture/Institute of Urban Design
Academic Institution: