Doris Kleilein on Changing Definitions of Urban Architecture

September 22, 2022

What makes a city a home for people with different backgrounds? How has the pandemic impacted city planning and urban architecture? In this episode, the 2022 Thomas Mann Fellow, architect and author Doris Kleilein looks at the benefits of L.A.’s ‘laissez-faire urbanism’ compared to more regulated approaches in Europe. She argues that “the built visibility of a culture or minority is key to becoming part of society.” Kleilein’s research focuses on how city planning can propose new forms of living together in a changing heterogenous societies. Kleilein heads the architectural book publishing house JOVIS in Berlin, and co-edited the book “Post-Pandemic Urbanism” in 2021.




Tom Zoellner (host) is the New York Times bestselling author of eight nonfiction books, including Island on Fire, Uranium Train, and The Heartless Stone. He teaches at Chapman University and Dartmouth College. A former reporter for the San Francisco Chronicle, he is the politics editor at the Los Angeles Review of Books.


Aida Baghernejad (co-host) is an award-winning journalist and culture critic based in Berlin. Her work appears in national and international media outlets, among them the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, the San Francisco Chronicle, the TagesspiegelZeit Online and Deutschlandfunk Kultur, as well as the German podcast series Pasta & Politik, featuring leading female politicians and thinkers in Germany. In 2021, she received the International Music Journalism Award as Music Journalist of the Year. She has previously taught at King’s College London and the Humboldt University Berlin.


Lisa Bartfai (producer) is an award-winning independent radio journalist, podcast producer, and translator. She is the producer and editor of the Los Angeles Review of Books podcast 55 Voices for Democracy, and the producer, editor, and host of Bowdoin Presents, a podcast by Bowdoin College. Bartfai’s own reporting was included in the Columbia Review of Journalism’s “Best journalism of 2020: Covering racial justice,” and has been awarded second place in the Society for Features Journalism 2021 Excellence-in-Features, in the Best Podcast category. Bartfai is a mentor with Report for America, and a proud alumni of the KALW Audio Academy.