2019 Conference Dublin

City Futures IV Creating just and sustainable cities

EURA – UAA joined conference 2019

Date: June 20th -22nd 2019


Host: University College Dublin (School of Architecture, Planning and Environmental Policy)


1. The City Futures Series of International Conferences

In 2004 the European Urban Research Association (EURA) and the Urban Affairs Association (UAA) joined forces to organise an international conference on City Futures.  Held in Chicago the conference explored future scenarios for cities and, as the conference was viewed as a success, the two associations decided to establish a five-year cycle of City Futures International Conferences.  Productive City Futures Conferences were held in Madrid in 2009 and in Paris in 2014.  The proposal outlined here is for the fourth City Futures Conference to be held in Dublin from 20-22 June 2019. Now more than ever it is opportune for both EURA and the UAA to co-operate on the City Futures conference given the challenges for cities across the globe and the need for academics, in conjunction with policy makers, practitioners and communities, to shape positive outcomes for cities and more importantly their inhabitants. The City Futures conference can provide a platform for scholars to compare and contrast experiences in their cities, to draw out lessons of interest from different countries and to engage in cross national dialogue.


2. Conference Theme

Taking inspiration from the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals the conference topic focuses on the challenges that we are currently facing to create cities and communities that are just, inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable, while reducing poverty and inequality.    Following a decade of crisis and austerity, inequalities are becoming ever more pronounced at local, regional and global scales, with our current economic models increasingly being questioned and trust in formal politics declining. Violence and extremism lead to enforced migration and the post war geopolitical map is being shaken.  Urban areas are often the sites where the contrasts between wealth and poverty are most pronounced, where inequalities become expressed spatially,  where environmental degradation is most pronounced, and where the disenfranchised and disillusioned look for solutions in entrenchment and fear of ‘otherness’.

Despite such challenges urban areas, as they have been for millennia, are often the fulcrum of hope and innovation. Urban areas can be the engines of the broader economy, the places where new forms of political mobilization manifest themselves, where citizen creativity is expressed in challenges to the political and economic status quo, where new technological solutions are being pioneered, where innovative local and city based solutions are proposed. The Conference theme asks scholars to reflect on how we can move towards more socially just, diverse, democratic, environmentally rich cities and city regions.  What are the challenges and solutions from the perspective of governance and politics, from a policy perspective in various sectors (planning, housing, design, regeneration etc.) and from the perspective of citizens?

There are interfaces and connections between each of the conference tracks which will provide opportunities for fruitful conversations, to address the theme of the conference.

Dublin and Ireland are appropriate contexts within which to explore some of these questions. Following a period of austerity the Irish economy is again experiencing significant growth, yet the consequences of our current economic model is manifest in entrenched urban problems not least a burgeoning housing and homelessness crisis, underdeveloped infrastructure and environmental challenges. Within the context of both local government reform and the publication of a new National Planning Framework, Ireland 2040 Our Plan, the role of Ireland’s premier city of Dublin and its growth and governance has been the subject of ongoing debate.


3. Conference Tracks


          1. Cities and Spatial Justice -More Inclusive Cities

Track Chairs:

Assoc. Professor Declan Redmond, School of Architecture, Planning and Environmental Policy, University College Dublin

Assoc. Professor Maureen Donaghy, Department of Political Science Rutgers University

Dr. Susanne Søholt, NIBR, Oslo Metropolitan University


          2. More or Less Competitive Cities?

Track Chairs: Assoc. Professor Dieter Kogler, School of Architecture, Planning and Environmental Policy, University College Dublin

Assoc. Professor Lin Ye, School of Government, Sun Yat-Sen University, Guangzhou China

Professor Karsten Zimmerman, Faculty of Spatial Planning TU Dortmund University


          3. Urban Environmental Challenges

Track Chairs: Dr. Michael Lennon School of Architecture, Planning and Environmental Policy, University College Dublin

Dr. Priyam Das, University of Hawaii at Manoa

Dr. Sonia De Gregorio Hurtado, Department of Urban and Spatial Planning, Universidad Politecnica de Madrid


          4. Governing Cities – Cities and Democracy

Track Chairs: Dr. Paula Russell, School of Architecture, Planning and Environmental Policy, University College Dublin

Professor Jill Gross, City University of New York

Dr. Cristina Stanus, University of Sibiu, Faculty of International Relations, Political Science and Security Studies


           5. Smart Cities

Track Chairs: Dr. Francesco Pila, School of Architecture, Planning and Environmental Policy, University College Dublin

Dr. Arturo Flores, National Autonomous University of Mexico and Anahuac University

Assoc. Professor Marco Santangelo, Interuniversity Department of Regional and Urban Studies and Planning, Politecnico di Torino

           6. Cultural Cities

Track Chairs: Dr. Arthur Parkinson School of Architecture, Planning and Environmental Policy, University College Dublin

Dr. Zhumin Xu, Department of Geography, University of Hong Kong

Dr. Andrew Tallon, Department of Geography and Environmental Management, University of the West of England


4. Mobile Workshops

There are significant opportunities in and around the city of Dublin for mobile workshops these include: Docklands including Silicon Docks; New Strategic Development Zones – Adamstown and Cherrywood; Social Housing Renewal; Inner city and edge city housing development; Historical Heritage Preservation;  Green and blue Infrastructure tour; Literary Tour.


5. Plenary Sessions and Round Tables

There will be two plenary sessions each with two keynote speakers.

There will also be a number of panels/round tables in which we will focus on key topics of policy and research interest that are of joint interest to the two associations UAA and EURA and their membership.


Time schedule:

Call for papers opening soon – abstract submission by 1st November 2018.

Abstract selection to take place from 1st November to 14th December with successful decisions notified to authors by 14th December 2018.

Author registration by early bird deadline March 1st  2019