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University of California Berkeley

Bucerius Ph.D. Fellow

Experiencing the Post-revolution State: Municipal Encounters, Land Commodification and Regional Inequalities in Tunisia


What happens to real-estate markets when we create municipalities from scratch in places where they were previously non-existent, and what do we learn about the concept of the state by examining land-based transactions at the municipal level? To answer these questions, Lana takes into account Tunisia’s territorial inequalities and their corollary of urban upgrading programs, as well as the current political decentralization program stipulated in article VII of the Constitution. She focuses on what she calls “municipal encounters” in post-revolution Tunisia, the everyday interactions between citizens and municipal planners centered on land. Against a predominantly labor-based account of the Arab revolutions and their aftermath, Lana articulates a land-based history of the present juncture.

Lana is a Ph.D. candidate in City and Regional Planning at the University of California Berkeley. Her training is trans-disciplinary and draws on works in anthropology, geography and political theory. In addition to her regional focus on the Middle East & North Africa, her interests fall broadly within urban studies and development studies. Lana holds a Master of Urban Planning and Policy and a Bachelor of Economics from the American University of Beirut. Before pursuing her graduate studies, she worked as an urban specialist at the World Bank and consulted for the Lebanese Prime Ministry. Lana´s research agenda is inspired by these professional experiences.

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