OISD recently hosted a workshop involving a 'Delphi' group of urban regeneration experts from across Europe, as part of the research it is conducting within the European Investment Bank's funded EIBURS research programme.
The workshop, which was held on the 19 and 20 February 2009, is the first part of the final stage of the three year programme of research which began in 2006, and which is focusing on how to measure and integrate social sustainability within urban renewal projects across the EU.
The main aim of the workshop was to bring together our research project participants and EIB representatives in order to share knowledge, expertise and best practice in the fields of urban regeneration, social sustainability, delivery mechanisms for regeneration, and financial instruments for urban areas. Some fourteen speakers were involved in the workshop, which focused on regeneration projects in Cardiff, Rotterdam, Turin and Barcelona.
Mateu Turró, responsible for urban projects at the EIB and coordinator of the EIB-Universities Action Programme (EIBURS), participated in the workshop, and stressed the importance of cooperation between researchers and practitioners in the field of sustainable communities in order to establish adequate indicators of project quality. He explained that new developments in EU policy, which support integrated urban planning and innovative methods of financing, will also require assessment methods that are still at their infancy and praised the work carried out by the OISD, supported by the EIB, in finding appropriate indicators for social sustainability. He suggested that:
"The workshop was very timely in providing focused discussions between the research team and regeneration experts, and the outcomes will certainly contribute to firm proposals for the practical application of social sustainability indicators".
Prof Tim Dixon (Director of OISD) said:
"This workshop presented us with a very important opportunity to tap into the expertise of experts associated with some of the most important regeneration projects across Europe. Measuring social sustainability upstream and downstream within these projects presents tremendous challenges, but the interview work we have conducted within the EU and the workshop findings both suggest that the development of a new, generic social sustainability framework can advance our knowledge and thinking in this field. We are grateful to EIBURS for funding this work."
News Item Dated:
19-20 February 2009