Fran Meissner

Social scientist of urban diversity

Fran Meissner’s main research interest is focused on contemporary urban social configurations and how – in times of datafication – these are transformed through international migration. She is an Assistant Professor in Critical Geodata Studies and Geodata Ethics at the University of Twente. Before starting at Twente Fran was an Assistant Professor of Urban Studies at the University of Leiden. She has previously held a highly competetive Marie Skłodowska Curie Fellowship at the TU Delft. Fran is still affiliated to the TU Delft and is a long term research partner at the Max Planck Institute for the Study of Religious and Ethnic Diversity, where she completed her PhD work as a Doctoral Research Fellow.

Fran has previously been a Junior Research Group Leader at the University of Kassel and a Research Associate at the School of Oriental and African Studies in the Migration and Diaspora Studies Center. She started her post-doctoral career as a Max Weber Fellow at the prestigious European University Institute in Florence Italy.

Her work grapples with novel perspectives on migrant socialities in cities and the diversity dynamics this produces. Through her PhD research she has developed a keen interest in the use of innovative visualisations to facilitate the analysis of complex data. Her PhD research is an empirical application of superdiversity. It investigates how multidimensional forms of migration related differentiations can be studied through the social networks of migrants from numerically small migrant groups. The work on ‘Socialising with Diversity’ is in the interdisciplinary field of Migration Studies and it has been awarded by the University of Sussex and was published with Palgrave. Her current research grappels with better understanding the complex configurations of the legal statuses migrants inhabit in different cities and neighbourhoods.

Her most recent obsession, next to climbing, is to explore and better conceptualize how technology and big data will change future urban diversities.

Fields of expertise:
Migration and urban diversification, Critical Data Studies, Geodata Ethics, Urban Futures, Data Visualisations