The Urban Futures research programme of the Department of Human Geography and Spatial Planning investigates urban issues in the context of an ongoing worldwide trend of increasing urbanisation.


Urban Futures aims at better understanding the urban system and to contribute to the future success of cities by paving the way for the transition towards a socially and economically sustainable and liveable urban future. 

We educate the next generation of researchers, teachers and policy makers in our highly appreciated bachelor and masters programs. The department is part of the Netherlands Graduate School of Urban and Regional Research (NETHUR) for PhD candidates. See also ‘teaching'

To continuously keep improving our teaching program and teaching of Geography in primary and secondary schools the department has a research group specialized in Geography Education and a course program for teachers in secondary schools. See also ‘research’

We actively participate in society via our expertise centre Urban Dynamics and Sustainability (ESD2). See also ‘expertise and services’


divercities logo
5 november 2015
An international group of researchers led by Utrecht University, show that the diversity in poor neighborhoods has many positive effects.
9 september 2015
The Executive Board of Utrecht University has appointed Prof. Dr Maarten Hajer as Professor of Urban Futures in the Faculty of Geosciences.
Globe in hand
5 augustus 2013
Professor Annelies Zoomers and Femke van Noorloos have been awarded €500,000 to study the relationship between climate projects and local conflict/cooperation