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Irit Katz


Educational Background and Experience:

Irit Katz obtained her B.Arch degree (Cum Laude) in Architecture from Bezalel Academy for Art and Design, Jerusalem, and her MA (Magna Cum Laude) in Hermeneutics and Cultural Studies from Bar Ilan University. She has worked as an architect in Tel Aviv from 2002-2006 and in London from 2006-2011, specializing in urban planning and housing schemes. She is currently s a PhD candidate at the Department of Architecture, University of Cambridge as a Girton College Scholar, affiliated to Conflict in Cities Research Programme. Her PhD research examines camps in Israel as a spatio-political instrument used in order to achieve political objectives both by the state and by its subjects.

Working Title of Thesis:

The Common Camp – Temporary Settlements as a Spatio-Political Instrument in Israel


This research will critically examine the idea of the camp in relation to temporary settlements in Israel. Through theoretical explorations coupled with fieldwork this research will analyze how temporary environments were and still are being used by Israel as a flexible means of controlling land and population to pursue the government’s territorial interests, while on the other hand camp residents are actively using their status as a platform for their ongoing spatio-political struggle. This dissertation argues that temporary living formed in various types of camps is a long-term part of Israeli policy on all sides of the political spectrum and that the camp is a central paradigm in the way the Israeli space is organized, managed and negotiated.

Other Activities:

Irit was the curator of a photography exhibition in Spiro Ark gallery, London, displaying the work of Bedouin children from Wadi Elnea’am unrecognized village (with Dukium – The Negev Coexistence forum).

Irit serves as a supervisor for the following BA Tripos (ARB/RIBA Part I) Courses:

Theories in Twentieth-Century Architecture

Housing and Urban Form: developments in Britain 1840-2012

Gardens and Landscape Design

Irit is currently one of the conveners of the History and Theory Research Seminar. This seminar offers a forum for intellectual exchange and the dissemination of research in the field of History and Theory of Architecture.

‘Hibernating’, Irit’s first poetry book, was published in summer 2012 by Hakkibutz-Hameuhad publishing house, Israel, with ‘Kesset’ publishing grant.

Girton College

Wendy Pullan


[1] Levi Eshcol, then head of the Jewish Agency’s Settlement Department, to Prime Minister David Ben Gurion, the Zionist Management Meeting 29 April 1949 (quoted in Segev 1984:143).

Research Interests

Camps, Temporary Architecture, Urban Informalities

Key Publications

Katz, Irit. 2012. “No Way Out or What is a Minor Architecture?”, Protocols – History & Theory, Issue No.26, Conflict: Antagonism and Creation, Fall 2012, Bezalel Academy for Art and Design, Jerusalem

Katz Feigis, Irit. 2010. “Spaces Stretch Inwards: Interactions between Architecture and Minor Literature “, Public Culture, Volume 22/3 (62) Fall 2010, (425-432) Duke University Press, NY

Katz Feigis, Irit. 2007. “Spaces Stretch Inwards”, Theory and Criticism, Volume 30, Summer 2007, (231-236) Van-Lir Institute, Jerusalem (Hebrew)



2013               The James Morris Prize, The Society of Architectural Historians of Great Britain, for the article: 

                       'Camps in Mandatory Palestine: The Emergence of Temporary Architectureas a Spatio-Political Instrument'.

2013               The Pillman Fund, Girton College, Cambridge

2013               Pfeiffer Scholarship, Girton College, Cambridge

2012, 2013     Ida and Isidore Cohen Scholarship, Girton College, Cambridge

2013, 2012     Kettle’s Yard Travel Award, University of Cambridge

2012               Ruth Whaley Scholarship, Girton College, Cambridge

2012               Kythe Waldram Travel Award, Girton College, Cambridge

2011-13          Kenneth-Lindsay Scholarship Award, The Anglo – Israel Association, London

2005               Departmental Bursary, the Program for Hermeneutics, Bar Ilan University

2003               First prize in the Yitzhaki Netzer research papers competition, Ben Gurion University

2000, 1999     Awards for academic achievements, Dept. of Architecture, Bezalel

1999               Award for excellence in design, Dept. of Architecture, Bezalel