European Urban Research Association
A brief historyThe European Urban Research Association (EURA) was launched at an international conference held in Brussels, Belgium in September 1997. The inspiration for this association originated in discussions proposing the creation of a new association for urban researchers at an international seminar on ‘Shaping the Urban Future’ held in Bristol, England, in July 1994.
Almost 25 years have passed since that very day, and EURA is now entering into adulthood, aiming to consolidate its agenda and aspirations. Over the last decade greater attention to urban issues has been visible at international level. On the one hand, the process related to the Quito conference, under the responsibility of UN habitat in 2016, and on the other, the new attention to the urban dimension under the current EU cohesion policy (made explicit with the Riga Declaration and the Pact of Amsterdam), make the EURA agenda even more challenging. In this globalised context, academic multi-dimensional and interdisciplinary urban debate is needed more than ever. As is cross national research and policy exchange. EURA has, throughout this time, strongly supported the necessity of debating the need for a European urban policy. Now that there is growing awareness and engagement at both international and EU level with this perspective, it is crucial that academics engage in this debate, producing innovative and challenging ideas and research.
EURA wishes to play an active part in shaping this Urban agenda, as a network able to promote innovative research design, exchange of knowledge and knowledge transfer. We feel EURA has a critical role to play, in particular, refocusing on its original idea of offering a bridge between research and policy. Researchers are anxious to help policy makers support integration, cohesion, and collaboration in the area of urban policy, ambitions often difficult to achieve. Policy makers must in turn recognise that researchers have an important contribution to make. Our shared agenda about urban problems must be developed, explored, extended and indeed challenged. EURA aims to facilitate this exchange of ideas and to foster the transfer of good practice in urban research and policy.
Our Journal Urban Research & Practice, plays a key role in this regard and we look forward to new contributions, and to its continued growth and increased impact. Our Working Groups are another tool in that direction: we are keen to develop these and others and are willing to support them. For colleagues at the early stages of their careers our Young Scholar Award and the Summer/Winter Schools, are key supports.
In a more and more global research community, EURA is constantly open to refining and enhancing its future role and agenda, inviting young scholars and experienced colleagues to contribute to its activities. We look forward to welcoming new members and we thank all of those who are already contributing to our association. Help us to change the urban future!