Economic processes have a tremendous impact on the prosperity of cities and regions. In order to support their competitiveness in the interregional and global competition for business locations, cities and regions follow different approaches such as provision of spatial conditions for economic development, financial support to incubation activities, research and development, or the improvement of social and technical infrastructures. These approaches must be linked to more holistic strategies of sustainable urban and regional development.
The chair for economics of urban and regional development at the University of Kassel tackles economic aspects of urban and regional development through its research and teaching. We share the normative aim to contribute to socio-ecologic and participatory transformation of local and regional economies.
Our teaching provides basic education on political economy as well as on urban and regional economics for students of urban and regional planning, landscape planning and architecture. We run specialisation modules for Master students on current issues of urban and regional development, which focus the economic perspective, usually through a challenge of local problem owners.
Our research is specialised on

  • questions of socio-ecologic and participatory transformation of economy and society (alternative conceptualisations of wealth, de-growth)
  • questions of spatial justice (social equality, social equity, equivalence of living conditions)
  • strategies for improving the resilience of local and regional economies towards external shocks (climate change adaptation), as well as
  • strategies for managing demographic change (strengthening the engagement of civil society, securing public services of general interest, adaptation of social and technical infrastructures).

In all our activities we focus on medium-sized cities and rural areas.
Further, the chair supervises and provides advice (research, monitoring, methods, facilitation of complex participation processes) to development processes in cities and regions.
We are member of the Institute for Urban Developments at the University of Kassel and do maintain strong working relationships with other entities at the University of Kassel, most importantly the Competence Centre for Climate Change Mitigation and Adaptation (CliMA), the Chair for Sustainable Finance and the Centre for Environmental Systems Research (CESR).