Against the backdrop of ongoing worldwide processes such as urbanisation, climate change, globalisation, and infrastructural and technological change, the Urban Futures programme contributes to the resolution of challenges related to social, economic and ecological sustainability in cities, in line with the 2030 Agenda and the UN Sustainable Development Goals. We study the processes and governance arrangements that inhibit or foster resilience, economic development, health, and inclusion and inequality in cities and urban regions.

Based on our mission, we investigate a range of questions, including:

  • How resilient are urban regions to economic and health crises, climate change and increasing social exclusion, and how can this resilience be established?

  • How do urban environments influence the activity and mobility patterns of urbanites, and how does that influence social interaction, inclusive networks, and physical and mental health?

  • How do processes of deglobalisation as well as global flows and circulations of people, capital, goods and knowledge contribute to or impede inclusive and sustainable urban futures? How do different groups cope with emerging opportunities and risks?

  • How can we envision, identify, mobilise and govern pathways to cities and infrastructure of the future?

To investigate multi-faceted urban issues, we aim for theoretical innovation based on combining different specialisation fields within the Department of Human Geography and Planning, represented in the Sections in our programme.

Research projects in which researchers from different specialisations collaborate include: