Welcome to Borderline City!
European integration is a matter of great controversy, with border issues taking center stage in cities and villages across all of Europe. Although green border landscapes along national territories shape the image of European border facilities, the cities themselves, regardless of their location, represent the battlegrounds and drivers of a dualistic trend within processes to both dissolve and draw borders. Growing isolationist tendencies – partially coupled with new border fortifications – compete with an open, interconnected and mobile society and extend beyond national borders. While knowledge, goods and technology circulate between cities and regions across borders as a matter of course, migration flows of people fleeing their countries give rise to a new appreciation for global dependencies among Europeans. This has provoked national, regional and global reactions, resulting in the Brexit process and the Solidarity Cities initiative or taking the form of urban border spaces such as gated communities. As these developments occur in parallel – drawing and closing borders as well as networking and opening borders – cities across all of Europe will be confronted with great challenges, which will ultimately impact the Europe of the future. How do people live, learn and work in borderless and isolated districts, cities and region? What types of tension are prevalent in border towns and border-related situations? How can these border landscapes be developed, planned and shaped?
Europe’s border spaces will be the focus of aspiring planners, designers and researchers at Digital Summer School 2020, from the 8th to the 15th of May, which will take place within the framework of Germany’s National Urban Development Policy as a contribution to the German EU Presidency with national and European schools of planning. This exchange between the planning schools and the Federal Ministry for Building is a already long-standing tradition in Germany and is supported as a key objective of the German EU Presidency.