Marta Petteni


Marta Petteni is an Italian Architect currently working at PSU's Homelessness Research and Action Collaborative as a designer and researcher. She completed her studies at University of Gdansk, Poland; University of Quito, Ecuador; and Politecnico of Milan, Italy, where she gained a Bachelor and Master in the Science of Architecture with the highest honors. Marta has worked on a range of international projects and, together with two colleagues, she built “Kaymanta,” a community-based tourism project developed with and for an indigenous community in Ecuador. The project received the PoliMi Thesis Abroad Prize in 2016. Following her passion for post-disaster and emergency design, in 2017 she earned her Master in “International Cooperation and Sustainable Emergency Architecture” at UIC Barcelona.

In summer 2016, Marta moved to Portland to work with the Center for Public Interest Design (CPID) at PSU, where she merged research and design to address the needs of underserved communities worldwide. At CPID she worked on a variety of projects including: transit design for community impact in Sacramento, California; the design and construction of Homeless Villages in Portland, Oregon; and a cultural center for Chamanga, Ecuador. Marta strongly believes in design as a powerful tool for social change, and she is particularly interested in challenging the meaning of success (and failure) of design and the tools to evaluate it. Her research focuses on pressing environmental and social issues such as climate change, social justice, post-disaster recovery, and emergency relief, while her practice complements this research through her work with communities and design-built projects worldwide.