Michaela Büsse

Dr. Michaela Büsse


On Social Media
michaela [dot] buesse [at] rifs-potsdam [dot] de

Michaela Büsse is a postdoctoral researcher at Technische Universität Dresden at the chair of Digital Cultures and Societal Change and Associated Investigator at the cluster of excellence "Matters of Activity. Image Space Material" at Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin. Between 2023-25 she is a fellow at Research Institute for Sustainability Helmholtz Centre Potsdam. In her research she focuses on sociomaterial transformations in the context of speculative urbanism, climate change mitigation, and energy transition. Drawing on elemental anthropology and feminist science and technology studies, she investigates how design practices and technologies govern environments and define who and what is being rendered inhuman.

  • 2023 - Fellow Research Institute for Sustainability Helmholtz Centre Potsdam
  • 2021 - Associated Investigator Cluster of Excellence "Matters of Activity. Image Space Material", Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin
  • 2021 - 2023 Research Associate, Institute of Cultural History and Theory, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin
  • 2020 - 2021 Visiting Researcher, Faculty of Architecture and the Built Environment, TU Delft
  • 2017- 2021 Junior Researcher, Critical Media Lab/ Institute of Experimental Design and Media Cultures, Basel Academy of Art and Design FHNW
  • 2017 Fellow Strelka Institute for Media, Architecture and Design, Moscow
  • Postnatural Landscapes
  • Design and Material Cultures
  • Critical Infrastructure Studies
  • Anthropology of the Built Environment
  • Human Geography
  • Political Ecology
  • Energy Anthropology
  • Experimental Documentary Film

Publications prior to joining the RIFS

  • Büsse, Michaela (forthcoming). "Shifting Sands" In: Turpin, Etienne and Springer, Anna-Sophie, Intercalations 5: Decapitated Economies. K Verlag: Berlin
  • Büsse, Michaela (forthcoming). "Critical Standpoints that are Careful" In: Mareis, Claudia/ Perraudin, Léa/ Winkler, Clemens. Material Trajectories. Designing with Care. Lüneburg: meson press.
  • Büsse, Michaela/ Mitrokhov, Konstantin (forthcoming). "Designed to Disappear: Dynamic Coastal Engineering as an Intra-Active Event" In: Majaca, Antonia. Incomputable Earth-Digital Technologies and the Anthropocene. London: Bloomsbury.
  • Büsse, Michaela (2022). "What are the politics of ontological design? A critical reflection on the mutual becoming of 'the human' and 'the world'" In: Mareis, Claudia/ Greiner-Petter, Moritz/ Renner, Michael (eds.). Critical By Design? Cultures, Epistemologies, Practices, Bielefeld: Transcript, pp- 80-92.
  • Büsse, Michaela (2020). "(Re)thinking Design with New Materialism - Towards a Critical Anthropology of Design." Somatechnics: Journal of Bodies - Technologies - Power, 10(3), pp. 355-373.
  • Büsse, Michaela. "From Military Base to Solar Park. The Role of Conversion Sites for Germany's Energy Transition", An Unwell World? Anthropology in a Speculative Mode, Association of Social Anthropologists Annual Conference, SOAS London, 2023.
  • Büsse, Michaela. "Design as Infrastructuring Practice: Speculative Urbanism and Material Transformation in Southeast Asia", Association of American Geographers Annual Meeting, Denver, Colorado, 2023.
  • Büsse, Michaela. "From Military Site to Solar Park. The Role of Conversion Sites for Renewable Energy Futures", Reunion, Recuperation, Reconfiguration. Knowledges and Technosciences for Living Together. Annual Conference Society of the Social Studies of the Science, Cholula, Mexico. 2022.
  • Büsse, Michaela; Bruder, Johannes; Bazdyrieva, Asia; Kubrack, Anastasia. "Zones of Sustainability. A Conversation on Situating the Politics of Global Energy Transitions", Situiert im Globalen: Konflikte, Kosten, Atmosphären, International Research Center for Cultural Studies & Academy of Art and Design Linz, 2022.
  • Büsse, Michaela. "Building with Nature", Lecture Performance during Shifting Sands, Sonic Acts Night Air Series, Amsterdam, 2022.
  • Büsse, Michaela; Keshavarz, Mahmoud; Musleh, Ali. "Designing in Real Worlds - Weaving Shared Histories through Design Anthropology". Memory Full? Reimagining the Relations Between Design and History, Design History Society, FHNW, 2021.
  • Büsse, Michaela. "Granular Grammar", Toward an Elemental Anthropology: Working through Sand, Breaking the Rules? Power, Participation and Transgression, International Society for Ethnology and Folklore, University of Helsinki, 2021.
  • Büsse, Michaela. "Gestaltete Umwelt als Gegenstand von Designforschung", Lecture Series BA Design, Zurich University of the Arts ZHdK, 2021.
  • Büsse, Michaela. "Analysing Design Through the Lens of Human-Material Entanglements", COOP Design Research, Bauhaus Dessau/Hochschule Anhalt, 2021.
  • Büsse, Michaela. "Speculating on the Nation-State Scale", Logistical Power, Infrastructures and State Formation Beyond the Nation State, Munich Center for Technology in Society, 2020.
  • Büsse, Michaela. "Cheap, Precious, Risky. Singapore's Nation-Building and its Relation to Sand", Transdisciplinary Lecture Series, TU Delft, 2020.
  • Büsse, Michaela. "Land Reclamation as a Speculative Material Practice", Radical Flows. FIBER Festival/Instability. Amsteram/online, 2020.
  • Büsse, Michaela. "Speculation on the Nation-State Scale", EASST/4S conference, 2020.
  • Büsse, Michaela. "Granular Grounds", Architectures of Nature, VI PER Gallery Prague, 2020.
  • Büsse, Michaela. "Sand Stories." After Agency, HAT Research Centre, Poznan, Poland 2019.
  • 2023-25 Research fellowship, Research Institute for Sustainability Helmholtz Centre Potsdam
  • 2024 Research residency, Villa Kamogawa Goethe Institute Kyoto, Japan
  • 2020/21 Mobility Grant (TU Delft), Swiss National Science Foundation
  • 2018 Research fellowship, "Acts of Life" - On Nature & Urbanity, an interdisciplinary collaboration between NTU CCA Singapore, MCAD Manila, Goethe Institute
  • 2018-2022 PhD grant, Swiss National Science Foundation (SNFS No.175913)