TUM – Technical University of Munich Menü

Prof. Dr. Alain Thierstein


Urban Development



Contact Details

Visitenkarte in TUMonline

Academic Career and Research Areas

Alain Thierstein is involved in research on urban and metropolitan development; spatial impact of the knowledge economy, in particular the visualization of non-physical firm relationships as well as spatial interaction of locational choice of residence, work and mobility; the role of star architecture for repositioning medium sized cities.

Alain Thierstein, PhD, is full professor for urban development at the Technical University of Munich (TUM), department of architecture. He also is affiliated with the consultancy of EBP Schweiz AG, Zurich, as partner and senior consultant in the area of urban and regional economic development. He received his Master degree as well as his Ph.D. in economics from the University of St. Gallen, Switzerland.


  • Honorary Mention Gerd Albers Award for Best Book, ISOCARP (International Society of City and Regional Planners) (2008)

Key Publications (all publications)

Lüthi S, Thierstein A and Hoyler M: "The world city network: Evaluating top-down versus bottom-up approaches". Cities 72(Part B). 2018; 287-294.


Zhao J, Bentlage M and Thierstein A: "Residence, workplace and commute: Interrelated spatial choices of knowledge workers in the metropolitan region of Munich". Journal of Transport Geography. 2017; 62: 197-212.


Alaily-Mattar N, Thierstein A and Förster A: "'Alternative futures': A methodology for integrated sustainability considerations, the case of Nuremberg West, Germany". Local Environment: The International Journal of Justice and Sustainability. 2014; 19(6): 677-701.


Lüthi S, Thierstein A and Bentlage M: "The Relational Geography of the Knowledge Economy in Germany. On functional urban hierarchies and localised value chain systems". Urban Studies. 2013; 50(2): 276-293.


Thierstein A, Lüthi S, Kruse C, Gabi S and Glanzmann L: "Changing value chain of the knowledge economy. Spatial impact of intra-firm and inter-firm networks within the emerging Mega-City Region of Northern Switzerland". Regional Studies. 2008; 42(8): 1113-1131.