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Emine Kayim

Ph.D. Student in Architecture
Dissertation: Stasi as Architectural Producer: Surveillance and Scientific Management in the East German Built Environment 1961-1989

Seda has received her B.Arch and M.Sc. degrees in Istanbul, Turkey, where she worked as an architectural journalist, writer and media producer. Her documentaries and installations have been exhibited at events such as the Istanbul Design Biennial, DocumentarIST Festival and Prague Architecture Week, and she has been published in numerous Turkish journals, magazines, and newspapers. As an architect and multi-media designer, Seda’s academic studies are broadly motivated by her interest in mobilizing media theory to understand architectural production and use.

Seda’s dissertation research focuses on the German Democratic Republic’s (GDR) Ministry of State Security (Ministerium für Staatssicherheit – MfS)—known as the Stasi— as an architectural producer. Taking architecture and surveillance as ‘regimes of knowledge’ operating across scientific management, Seda’s project includes agents of surveillance within the constellation of architectural experts and policy-makers. This project examines how methods and conditions of surveillance have shaped the design, production and use of East German architecture and how, in turn, architectural objects and practices affected the techniques of surveillance. By understanding ‘architecture as a technology of surveillance,’ Seda is trying to develop a theoretical approach to understand the spatialization of surveillance that challenges Foucault’s panoptic model.

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