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Towards New Forms of Urban Governance and City Development


The composition of the consortium is of particular significance for achieving the project goals. The partners bring a diversity of scientific, professional and experiential knowledge to the collaboration. In the cities included in the consortium, urban labs are in place or being established. This guarantees access to a rich variety of past experiments for retrospective analysis and new projects for action research, involving a wide variety of urban stakeholders. These cities, located in Sweden (Malmö), the Netherlands (Maastricht), Belgium (Antwerp) and Austria (Graz and Leoben), represent a broad range of socio-geographic and politico-cultural contexts. Furthermore, the urban labs vary widely in terms of ambition, focus, and stage of development, ranging from newly- to well-established. The participants from the city partners in the consortium are personally involved in urban lab initiatives and strongly committed to learning how these can be further developed, improved and integrated.

The academic partners are well-connected with local urban lab initiatives and bring complementary perspectives and expertise, including transition management, participatory design, urban governance, social learning and sustainable urban and regional development. The Studio for foresight and design has a particularly strong vast experience in organization and facilitation of participatory, multi-actor approaches. These characteristics and competences of the consortium partners match very well with the action research approach, based on the concept of ‘transitioning of experiments’, focusing on multi-actor involvement, strategic learning, evaluation, and dissemination and embedding of lessons in governance structures.

The action research approach of URB@Exp, with its strong focus on joint learning, will channel this diversity of knowledge and expertise together in a productive way. All partners will be involved in design of the urban lab experiments, in joint reflexive learning during the experiments, and in evaluation and drawing lessons from the experiments. It is important to note that this concerns all urban actors (stakeholders) involved in these experiments and not only policymakers of the city partners.


Academic Partners:

City Partners:

Studio for foresight and design: