DYNAMIC BORDER LAND­SCAPES IN EUROPe

A new round of discus­sions on Euro­pean inte­gra­tion begins between rigid border­lines and vibrant border land­scapes: On the one hand, the border between nation states is primarily inter­preted as an admin­is­tra­tive and restric­tive boundary with new border forti­fi­ca­tions within the context of global migra­tion flows. On the other hand, the terri­to­rial borders are under­stood as economic spaces and habi­tats in order to encourage the conver­gence of cross-border city networks and regions, land­scapes and cultural spaces at a polit­ical level. From an indi­vidual perspec­tive, the networked society opposes this effort, virtu­ally inde­pen­dently of national borders to a great extent, fluc­tu­ating between a retreat to the private sphere and a rebel­lious civil society reor­ga­nizing itself into urban and regional move­ments and units. There­fore, in addi­tion to border issues impacting national fron­tier regions, the processes behind estab­lishing new borders and dissolving existing ones epit­o­mize urban and rural envi­ron­ments across all of Europe. Plan­ning and design issues mani­fest within this field of tension for the Europe of the future in transna­tional everyday places, city districts and regions.

These border land­scapes serve as the venues for nego­ti­ating and defining Euro­pean urban devel­op­ment poli­cies. Within the frame­work of a summer school, the univer­si­ties open a crit­ical debate regarding border spaces and topics related to future urban devel­op­ment in Europe. Up-and-coming plan­ners and designers scru­ti­nize prescribed inter­pre­ta­tions of terri­to­rial lines, describe the dynamics of tran­si­tion zones within cities and regions, and search for new perspec­tives on people-friendly devel­op­ment in Europe. The focus of the border­line city is shifting towards spatial phenomena and forms of coop­er­a­tion along border land­scapes. More than ever, the evolu­tion and trans­for­ma­tion of habi­tats, from the archi­tec­ture to the region, needs to be mapped out in order to describe the dialec­tics and concur­rence of dynamic devel­op­ments contex­tu­al­ized on different scales. This is the only manner in which neces­sary actions of partic­ular interest from a plan­ning and design perspec­tive can be intro­duced into the debate on the further devel­op­ment of Euro­pean inte­gra­tion and the Leipzig Charter. For that reason, Summer School 2020 will be devoted to the places that are most impacted by border processes:

Isolated and border­less loca­tions and districts

Cross-border urban spaces that galva­nize inspi­ra­tion and
inno­va­tion at the local level

Trans­border urban spaces and land­scapes confronted with conflicting
devel­op­ments at the regional level

Inter­re­gional spaces for coop­er­a­tion and city networks with
trend-setting urban devel­op­ment targets

Everyday processes behind estab­lishing and dissolving borders

Social coex­is­tence is not just struc­tured based on natio­nal borders. The disso­lu­tion of spatial and temporal borders is steadily becoming more visible and palpable in Euro­pean villages, cities and regions in partic­ular. Greater flex­i­bility and digi­tal­iza­tion in common­place activ­i­ties such as work, consump­tion, leisure and mobility are leading to a growing disin­te­gra­tion of collec­tive time struc­tures, thus altering the rhythms of our cities. (cf. Pohl 2009) As a conse­quence of approx­i­mating insti­tu­tional frame­works and tech­no­log­ical advance­ment, the func­tional and infra­struc­tural require­ments for a city are changing. At the same time, the bound­aries bet­ween the spheres of work and private life are becoming pro­gressively blurred, which will have addi­tional reper­cus­sions for the func­tional rela­tion­ships in urban spaces and how they are orga­nized in the future. The digi­tal­iza­tion of work is creating greater phys­ical inde­pen­dence from the place employ­ment, making it neces­sary to rene­go­tiate mobility and loca­tion issues. Flex­ible and border­less work is changing everyday life in the city. Spatial, temporal and func­tional change processes must not be consid­ered sepa­rately but instead are rife with paral­lels and interdependencies.