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USESPON workshop in Berlin

Publication date:2013-10-25, Last updated:2013-10-25
The role of cities in the EU 2020 strategy: key drivers and positioning in a European comparison

On 26th September 2013, the USESPON workshop of the German ECP took place. Representatives of the scientific and the practical world were invited to Berlin to get to know methods, tools and results of the ESPON 2013 programme.

The workshop started with a presentation about the European perspective on German cities which is characterised by a balanced settlement structure. Another lecture presented a more global view on European cities, their function and economic performance. The second part of the workshop addressed various possibilities how to compare cities. Experiences from the ESPON project BEST METROPOLISES showed that a comparison, in that case between Paris, Warsaw and Berlin, supports exchange and may initiate a learning process between local administrations. Interactive tools like the ESPON project CityBench and the Urban Audit atlas for structural data for German cities presented possibilities how European and German cities might compare themselves by means of simple tools. Interesting aspects to be compared included economic, social and ecological sustainability or demographic developments, all of them important features of the EU 2020 strategy.

In the final discussion with the speakers and the audience, the purpose of comparisons was highlighted: searching for a potential partner with similar structures and developments. Additionally, it was considered to be very important that the positioning of cities becomes discernible to the cities themselves as well as to third parties. A new generation of practitioners and politicians with data knowledge is definitely open-minded towards using such tools in their everyday work.

Support materials used during the workshop (in English) are available here.

Below you can find the programme and presentations from the workshop.