JRC Webinar Series

Future of Cities

20 April 2023


Date and time

20 April 2023
31 May 2023


We are pleased to be working with the EU Commission’s Joint Research Centre (JRC) to deliver a webinar series on the Future of Cities. The series will feature three webinars:

1st Webinar: Urban-rural interactions and their territorial disparities, Thursday 20 April 2023

Policy Brief


2nd Webinar: Cities fit for the digital age, Thursday 25 May 2023

 Policy Brief


3rd Webinar: Shrinking Cities, Wednesday 31 May 2023

Policy Brief


Background - The Future of Cities report 

The Future of Cities report identifies challenges influencing the future of cities in Europe and beyond. It also presents several perspectives from which to look at resolving these issues. It is an initiative of the Joint Research Centre (JRC), the science and knowledge service of the European Commission (EC), supported by the Commission's Directorate-General for Regional and Urban Policy (DG REGIO).

By taking stock of current knowledge and understanding of city systems, the report highlights potential pitfalls cities should avoid, and defines broad principles they should lean towards. It aims to foster discussion and help policy makers, individual cities and their citizens choose the best way forward.

The main urban challenges identified in the report concern: affordable housing, mobility, the provision of services, social segregation, ageing, climate action, the environmental footprint, and urban health. At the same time, it is illustrates that cities are uniquely equipped to tackle such challenges – the abundance of available physical space, a large and diverse population, a certain level of autonomy, and openness to technological advancements and innovation, to name but a few, may offer ways to relieve the pressures cities face.

With the completion of the stand-alone report, the work continues in the form of the publication of policy briefs, short documents that focus on a single urban issue, bringing together empirical knowledge and policy implications. Recent policy briefs focus on the topics of: urban-rural interactions, cities fit for the digital age, and shrinking cities. More policy briefs are expected to follow in the future.

In this respect, the Future of Cities report and policy briefs benefit greatly from the collective intelligence put forward by the Members of the EC Community of Practice for Cities (CoP-CITIES). The CoP –CITIES brings together cities, city networks, academia and NGOs to share knowledge and expertise on urban issues, to anticipate potential challenges, and to generate scientific evidence for effective urban policies.

The future of cities is not set in stone and is not easy to predict, but the choices they make now will shape the lives of generations to come. Thus, the main aim is to raise open questions and steer discussions on what the future of cities can, and should be, both within the scientific and policymaker communities.

The Future of Cities also has a dedicated platform.

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