Former MUSTS member Dr Jess Bier has recently received the Dissertation Prize of Maastricht University for her dissertation,’Mapping Israel, Mapping Palestine‘. The dissertation, which was written while Jess Bier was a member of the MUSTS research programme, was supervised by Prof Sally Wyatt and Dr Bas van Heur. The Maastricht University Dissertation Prize is given out annually for the best dissertation defended in that calendar year, rotating between the inner city and the Randwyck faculties. The 2016 award was for the best inner city PhD defended in 2014 or 2015.
Jess Bier examined how the segregated landscapes of Jerusalem and the West Bank influenced the way this region has been mapped since 1967. She studied how knowledge can change space and time, for example through urban planning and landscape management, and the development of international standards like time zones. According to the jury, this topic was researched in an entirely new and unique way. Much of her data was collected through extensive ethnographic fieldwork in Israel and Palestine. Jess Bier currently works as an assistant professor of Urban Sociology at Erasmus University in Rotterdam.jess