Image Building Bridges: Cities and Regions in a Transnational World

Date and location

  •   April 3, 2016 - April 6, 2016
  •   Karl-Franzens-Universität Graz, Austria

Conference details

If tweeting about this event use #RSAGRAZ2016

Throughout history, cities and regions have been cornerstones of economic, social and cultural institution building and centres of communication and trade across borders of empires and nations. In a globalised world dominated by multi-level governance and declining economic and political significance of the nation-state, cities and regions are becoming ever more so important in building bridges across nations, supra-national unions, and even continents.

These challenges surpass the usual aspects of integration: it is not sufficient to reduce barriers for the mobility of labour, goods, services and capital, to create a homogenous competitive environment, and a solid monetary system. What is needed in addition are more elements of a new regionalism, which is based on non-hierarchical relationships, on self-government, and on the creation of flexible alliances leading to interregional transnational cooperation. The development of a region is affected by its competitive and complementary relationships with other increasingly distant regions.

These relationships have to be embedded in an overall structure of relations which encompass the purely economic ones and have strong social, cultural, legal and political dimensions. The objective of the conference is to initiate an interdisciplinary dialogue about the future of a transnational world of urban and regional cooperation. We welcome submissions from researchers, policy makers and practitioners working in all areas of regional analysis on the following themes:

Austerity (Risk and Resilience)

Socio-Spatial inequalities, Ageing, Knowledge Exchange,  Demography and Well-being

Urban and Regional Sustainability

Innovation, Agglomeration, Evolution

Leadership and Governance

Clusters, Competence Centres, Smart Specialisation and Global Production

Geo Economy and Geo Politics

Local and Regional Economic Development and Planning

City Region Building and Metropolitics

Identity, Citizenship and Lived Differences

Territorial Politics, Metropolitics and Federalism

Cohesion, Competition and Smart Cities

Urban and Regional Theory, Methodology and Data

Infrastructures and Built Environment

Developing Area Studies

Smart Rural Areas and Peri Urban Areas

Health and Wellbeing/Health Economics

Spa Tourism/Music Tourism/ Sports Tourism/Film Tourism

Climate Change, Sustainability and Mitigation

Federalism, Subsidiary and the Allocation of Competences

Conference Organisers

Academic Organiser:
Professor Michael Steiner, Karl-Franzens-Universität Graz, Graz, Austria

RSA Organiser:
For further questions and information please contact Wanda Miczorek at

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How to get there

Karl-Franzens-Universität Graz, Austria