Documenting the Spatial Practices of Global Migration

Dezeen Interview with former “Mayor” of Zaatari

Category : BRIEFLY NOTED 11/27/2015

Kilian Kleinschmidt left his post working for UNHCR after 25 years to be “as disruptive as possible. In this interview with dezeen, he discusses the need to empower refugees to create their own environment, recognizing that the average stay in a camp is now 17 years.


Regions in Europe should see this force as an opportunity, he thinks. Read the entire interview here.

more on the the Zaatari camp can also be found in this report: Zaatari: The Instant City by the Affordable Housing Institute. Though considered to be a temporary settlement, Zaatari is one of the largest and fastest-growing cities in Jordan, housing more than 120,000 Syrian refugees on a 2-square-mile plot of desert and costing $500,000 a day to run. Instant cities like Zaatari are not acknowledged as such, even though they last an average of 17 years and currently house 45 million people worldwide.