Regional Planning and Regional Development
The Centre of Regional Planning and Regional Development (Region) concentrates on the academic study and applied research of issues of scientific planning especially in regional development on the national, European and international levels.
A framework of lectures and seminars imparts knowledge on the development of supra-regional planning in Austria, its instruments, and also the groundwork necessary to produce such instruments. Other contents involve strategies of cross-border spatial planning, planning in selected neighbouring countries, and also concepts/planning on the European level in the context of EU regional politics. The methods and instruments of planning are elucidated based on actual regions.
Practical projects form another focus of studies; they are organised in an international setting and are based on various topics in the regional planning context. In recent years the Department worked together with such institutions as the University of Architecture, Civil Engineering and Geodesy, Sofia/Bulgaria, the Krakow University of Technology/Poland, the POLIS University Tirana/Albania, the Sultan Qaboos University/Oman, the University of Ljubljana/Slovenia, the University of Sarajevo/Bosnia and Herzegovina, the University of Pristina/Kosovo, the AAB University Pristina/Kosovo, der University of Tetovo/Macedonia, the EIABC Addis Ababa University/Ethiopia, the Delft University of Technology/Netherlands, the University of Liverpool/UK, the University of Utah/USA, the Slovak University of Technology, Bratislava/Slovakia, the Brno University of Technology/Czech Republic, the Masaryk University, Brno/Czech Republic and the Saga University/Japan.
The Centre moreover coordinates the module “European Regional Development”. Austria’s entry into the EU decisively changed the institutional framework conditions – also for regional development politics. Dealing with an international European dimension became part of the national territorial policy. Besides the effects of the regionally relevant responsibilities of the European Union on all planning levels in Austria, the course addresses the planning systems and framework conditions as regards planning rights of the EU member states. Further emphasis is placed on the theory-based understanding of urban and regional development in Austria and selected regions in Central and Eastern Europe.
Special importance is given as well to the partner universities involved in the Socrates/Erasmus programmes of the EU and to the CEEPUS networks. At present cooperation contracts exist with diverse European universities.
In its research the Centre addresses regional development strategies, endogenous regional growth, cross-border regional development and planning, territorial cohesion in Europe, energy planning, gender mainstreaming in spatial planning and the theme of space for refugees, integration and spatial planning.
Seen and practised as a fundamental component within this context is the interdisciplinary cooperation with specialists, universities, authorities and NGOs.