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Orna Rosenfeld

Global Advisor on Housing, Housing Inclusive Urban Futures, Global Social Impact Award Winner 2021

Dr. Orna Rosenfeld B.Arch. (Hons) M.A. PhD is a housing expert, advisor, research scientist and author with global reach and presence. Her expertise lies in international comparative housing policy, knowledge and investment, housing inclusion, urban governance and strategy as prerequisites for inclusive urban development, social and territorial cohesion.  

Her work covers 59 countries, where she supports leaders of governments, cities and international organisations such as the European Commission, the European Investment Bank (EIB), the World Bank, the Council of Europe Development Bank and the United Nations to shape the visions of the national, global and European housing policies.  

In her recent role as the advisor for the EIB, Dr Rosenfeld examined the impact of the COVID-19 crisis on the housing sector in the European Union, advised on the future investment in the sector and the design of the first social impact bond to support affordable housing.  

As a key expert for the European Commission, Dr Rosenfeld advised the DG REGIO on matters related to housing policy, funding, and regulation and was instrumental in the implementation of the EU Urban Agenda Partnership for Housing particularly its governance strategy and the development of the Housing Partnership action plan.  

Most recently, she designed a pioneering methodology linking and assessing the contribution of all 14 EU Urban Agenda Partnerships and their 132 actions to the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals and the New Urban Agenda in Europe.  

At the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (2013-17), Dr Rosenfeld supported the Committee on Urban Development, Housing and Land Management by researching the housing trends and challenges in the Global North. In that capacity, she contributed to Habitat III New Urban Agenda preparatory process and addressed ministers of 56 countries. 

In addition to her advisory work, Dr Rosenfeld is committed to scientific research and education. She is the Cities. Housing and Real Estate Chair Committee Member and adjunct professor at Sciences Po – The Paris Institute of Political Studies. Before Sciences Po she thought at the University of Westminster in London and is a frequent visiting lecturer worldwide. 

Dr Rosenfeld is the author of numerous strategic and scientific articles, reports, book chapters and books published internationally and translated into 27 EU languages, Russian and Korean. Among them is the flagship study ‘Social Housing in the UNECE Region: Models, Trends and Challenges’ published by the United Nations. 

Her work has won research excellence awards from the Association of European Schools of Planning, the University of Westminster and the Town Planning Review among others.  In 2014, Dr Rosenfeld was awarded the title of World Cities Summit Young Leader in Singapore for her contribution to sustainable urban development internationally. In 2021, she was honoured as a Global Social Impact Award Winner by the British Council.  

Known as a dynamic and effective advocate for the advancement of the affordable housing sector, Dr Rosenfeld has presented at over 100 conferences in over 30 countries, including at the United Nations, European Parliament and Capitol Hill. She keynoted the International Housing Forum in Singapore, the European Housing Forum in Berlin and the INTBAU World Congress in London among others. Over the past two decades, she has served numerous expert groups, including at the ESPON, UN-Habitat, OECD, ELTI and CNBC.  

In 2021, Dr Rosenfeld launched the Inclusive Urban Futures podcast uniting leaders across disciplines and geographies in sharing visions for achieving inclusive urban recovery post-COVID-19. 

​Dr Rosenfeld holds a Doctorate in housing, urban regeneration and development from the University of Westminster in London. A Chevening Scholar, she holds an M.A. in Planning Research and Theory from the University of Sheffield and a magna cum laude degree in Architecture from the Technion – IIT. 

A national of four countries Dr Rosenfeld is based in Paris, France. Besides English, she is fluent in Serbian, Croatian and French, speaks Hebrew and Hungarian and has also studied Ukrainian and Spanish.