Award-Winning Urban Strategist 

Global Advisor on Housing

Research Scientist 

Author and Speaker

Dr. Orna Rosenfeld is passionate about housing and inclusive urban development. Her work covers 56 countries, where she advises governments, selected cities and leaders of international organizations such as the European Commission, UNECE, the World Bank and the Council of Europe Development Bank, among others.  As a Doctor of science, she combines expertise from a number of disciplines: city planning, architectural engineering and socio-political research, to advance housing knowledge, investment and policy in pursuit of inclusive urban futures.


Dr Orna Rosenfeld B.Arch. (Hons) M.A. Ph.D. is an award-winning urban strategist, a global advisor on housing, research scientist, author and presenter. She serves international organizations, governments and selected cities in their work on housing in Europe, North America, Central Asia, Caucasus and the Middle East. Her scientific work focuses on housing trends in the Global North, affordable housing, housing markets, urban strategy and governance, including the implementation of international mega-projects over 1$ billion.

Known internationally as a dynamic and effective advocate for the advancement of housing sector knowledge and policy, Orna’s public sector work is extensive. She provides research and counsel to international organizations such as the European Commission, the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe, the Council of Europe Development Bank and the World Bank, as well as national and city governments at policy and ministerial levels.


She is the author of numerous books, scientific and strategic articles and reports, among them the flagship study Social Housing in the UNECE Region: Models, Trends and Challenges, and co-author of the Habitat III Global Report published by the United Nations.


She served as an advisor to the UNECE Committee on Urban Development, Housing and Land Management, providing strategic guidance on the Committee work's thematic orientation. As a senior advisor for the European Commission, Dr Rosenfeld assisted on affordable housing policy, funding, and regulation as well as the implementation of the E.U. Urban Agenda Partnership for Housing, and the EU Urban Agenda links with Sustainable Development Goals, New Urban Agenda and Paris Climate Agreement. In her recent work for the European Investment Bank Dr Rosenfeld researched the impact of COVID-19 crisis on the housing sector in 27 EU member states and advised on the maters of social impact investment-related to social and affordable housing and the Bank’s Sustainability Awareness Bonds. Active internationally, Orna has served on numerous expert groups, including at the UN-Habitat, ESPON, ELTI and CNBC Energy Futures.


Dr. Rosenfeld’s dedication to housing policy began with her work in the real estate sector. An architect by training, Orna designed and helped deliver over 6,000 homes before committing herself to international housing policy research and counsel.


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


Besides English, she is fluent in Serbian, Croatian and French, speaks Hebrew and Hungarian and has also studied Russian and Spanish. She lived in Serbia, Israel and the United Kingdom before settling in Paris, France.


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Dr. Rosenfeld's scientific work on housing and urban development has won awards from the Association of European Schools of Planning, University of Westminster, British Council Chevening and Town Planning Review, among others. In 2014, she was awarded the title of World Cities Summit Young Leader for her contribution to sustainable urban development internationally. 


She is an Associate of the Higher Education Academy in the United Kingdom and adjunct professor at Sciences Po - Institute for Political Studies in Paris, where she teaches new generations of metropolitan policy makers. Prior to moving to Paris, she taught at Westminster University in London. She is a frequent guest lecturer at universities in Europe and overseas. 


Orna also chairs international advisory boards for housing that are reformulating their strategies, policy and investment.


Orna regularly supports and contributes to selected global philanthropic campaigns. Among notable missions, she helped a network of global charities raise over 100 million US dollars for emergency rescue actions, housing and education of migrants as a speaker in Israel, the UK and USA in the 2000s. In this capacity, she spoke along with the world’s most known and celebrated personalities, among them Coretta Scott King, the wife of Martin Luther King and James Rubin U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for Public Affairs.

Orna continues to support various humanitarian causes today including gender equality and refugee rescue and inclusion.