Workshop “The potential of small and medium cities in cross-border polycentric metropolitan regions” (30 June 2015, Luxembourg-City)

  • Understanding the concept
  • Recognising the challenges
  • Finding appropriate responses

30 June 2015 in Luxembourg-City
Centre de Conférence - Hôtel Parc Belle-Vue
5 Avenue Marie-Thérèse
L-2132 Luxembourg

The workshop “The potential of small and medium cities in cross-border polycentric regions” was organised by the Department of Spatial Planning and Development in the context of the Luxembourgish Presidency of the Council of the European Union in the second half of 2015. The purpose of this workshop was to explore the challenges and potential of small and medium cities in cross-border polycentric regions (CBPRs), by presenting a state of play report on CBPRs with a selection of case studies from across Europe and facilitating an exchange between relevant stakeholders on the following topics:

  • The added value of a polycentric urban development across borders: do European, national and regional stakeholders sufficiently recognise the potential of CBPRs?
  • Good practices and obstacles: what are good practices around Europe and which obstacles exist with reference to the cooperation between small and medium cities across borders?
  • The current discussions on urban and territorial policies: how can we make sure that the role of small and medium cities is taken into account and their potential is being recognised in the current debates at the European level and their potential recognised?
  • The European Structural and Investment Funds: how do the instruments and objectives of the ESIF support the development of CBPRs?
  • The governance question: do small and medium cities in CBPRs raise particular governance issues and how can they be involved in effective multi-level governance?

The workshop was divided into four main sessions.

The Opening Session consisted of a Welcome Speech by the Director-General of the Department (Frank Vansteenkiste), a Setting the Scene by the Deputy Head of Unit for European and International Affairs (Thiemo Eser), and an Introduction to the Trio theme of small and medium cities by the Director of the European Urban Knowledge Network (Mart Grisel).

Session 1 was dedicated to the presentation of the state of play report. The Luxembourg Institute of Socio-Economic Research (LISER) presented the findings and conclusions from the analysis of 21 case studies of CBPRs from across Europe. This presentation was followed by questions from the audience.

Session 2 dealt with the potential and challenges of small and medium cities in cross-border polycentric regions and took the form of a panel discussion (involving actors at the local and European level).

Session 3 consisted of thematic workshops (that took place simultaneously) addressing different sectors:

  • A) Common infrastructure projects
  • B) Labour market
  • C) Economic development, innovation and research

The European Urban Knowledge Network (EUKN) was invited to prepare a report on the Trio theme of small and medium cities and the conclusions of the workshop. This report will function as an input paper for the political process under the Luxembourgish Presidency and will be made available on this website in August 2015.

The Powerpoint presentations are available below.

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