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Dr Elizabeth Wagemann

Dr Elizabeth Wagemann

Research Associate

Natural Materials and Structures Group

Office Phone: +44 (0) 1223 760 129


Elizabeth Wagemann is a trained architect that conducts research on housing in extreme situations using prefabricated and modular designs. She graduated from Universidad Católica de Chile with a Bachelor of Architecture (2001) and a Master in Architecture (2005). She received an MPhil in Architecture (2012) and a PhD (2016) from the University of Cambridge and is currently a Research Associate in the Department of Architecture.
Before starting her studies at the University of Cambridge, she worked at Universidad Católica de Chile as an instructor and lecturer (Thesis, 2nd year Studio, Experimental Prototypes) and coordinator of the master programmes (Architecture, Urban Design and Landscape). She also worked as an architect in small and medium scale projects. Her M.Arch Thesis was exhibited at the Architecture Biennial of Chile 2010, and was presented in different conferences. Her PhD was funded by Becas Chile Scholarship.

Research Interests

In her MPhil in Architecture at Cambridge she carried out a research called "Transitional accommodation after disasters. The gap between transitional and permanent housing". The research presents a comparison of shelters built in the past decade, showing a tendency to develop universal prototypes centred on the short-term product, when long-term projects are needed.

Her PhD research was based on the flexibility and adaptation of shelters after disasters. Modifications done by users on prefabricated solutions are studied, with the aim to define a set of design suggestions for future additions and changes.

Her current research is focused on bamboo construction in Pakistan for post-disaster housing and is funded by the EPSRC Global Challenges Research Fund. 

Current affiliations

  • Eco-house Research. Researcher in transitional housing and disaster recovery.
  • RIBA Associate Member


Key Publications



  • 2014. E. Wagemann, B. Devilat, D. Bralec, M. Stuardo, C. Soza (Eds). ChileGlobal Seminars UK 2013-2014. ChileGlobal Seminars UK, United Kingdom, 2014. ISBN: 978-956-358-346-5
  • 2014. A. Gatoo, E. Wagemann. M. Bock (Eds). ‘The challenge of slum research, Briefing Notes’, University of Cambridge, Ecohouse Initiative, UK (2014) 
  • 2013 L. Heykoop, F. Killing, B. Devilat, K. Shute, E. Wagemann (Eds). ‘13th UK Shelter Forum, briefing Notes’, UK (2013) 
  • 2011-14. Editorial Board Member. Scroope: The Cambridge Architecture Journal, UK. ISSN: 0966-1026 
  • 2007-09. Editorial Board Member. MARQ journal: Master in Architecture. Universidad Catolica, Chile. ISSN: 0718-6630


Disasters, Shelters, and Latin American Studies

Department of Architecture, University of Cambridge

  • 2016. Festival of Ideas: 'From architecture that evolves to architecture that deploys'.
  • 2014. Symposium: ‘The challenge of designing for uncertainties. Flexibility and adaptation in transitional shelters after disasters’ 
  • 2013. Graduate Colloquium: ‘The flexible shelter. From transitional to permanent house’ (Poster)
  • 2012. Centenary Symposium: ‘Transitional accommodation after disaster’ (Poster)

Churchill College, University of Cambridge