Elsa Noterman

University of Cambridge


Elsa Noterman is a critical geographer currently on a research fellowship at Queens’ College, University of Cambridge after receiving her PhD from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 2020. Her research primarily focuses on collective struggles over access to housing and land inpursuit of equity and repair. She is interested in how these contestations highlight forms of everyday differential commoning, foster il/legal tactics that reframe possession, and reveal ongoing entanglements of settler colonial and racial capitalist logics in the reproduction of U.S. city spaces. Her recent work examines how everyday use of “vacant” land and buildings in the city of Philadelphia both reinforces and destabilizes normative notions of urban development and property. In ongoing work, she is researching the disposal of U.S. federal surplus property for public benefit, including for housing, and is working collaboratively on community-based research in the UK on questions of local land access and ownership, and how these relate to housing justice. She also occasionally writes about critical pedagogy and organizing within and beyond educational spaces.