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Department of Spatial Planning
Summer semester 2023

Seminars and lectures

Prof. Dr. Karsten Zimmermann

092011 | Lecture | 2 SWS | German

Day          From   To         Place                                           Start                   End

Monday  12:15   13:45   Geschoßbau III HS 103       03.04.2023    10.07.2023

Not applicable 15.05.2023 (excursion week)

moodle room


On the topicality of spatial planning in Germany

The political status of spatial planning in Germany is regularly the subject of intense debate, and quite a few voices in this debate express concerns about the enforceability and relevance of spatial planning - at all levels. On the other hand, we experience almost daily the problematization of issues that call for spatial planning approaches. The list is long and ranges from the housing crisis in metropolitan areas, the discussion about air pollution control in cities, the structural change after the coal phase-out, the new unease about the urban planning quality of our cities, the need for land reform, delays in infrastructure planning, and many more. The lecture with seminar parts will introduce these topics and give the opportunity to discuss them. Active participation is expected.

Certificate of achievement

5 pages essay

Prof. Dr. Karsten Zimmermann

09117a | Lecture with Seminar | 2 SWS | German | 2 Credits

Day           From  To        Place                                       Start                         End

Monday  16:15  17:45  Lecture Hall Building I - HS5 03.04.2023  10.07.2023

Cancelled 15.05.2023 (excursion week)

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European Spatial Planning and Planning Systems in Europe

The lecture offers a basic introduction to the increasingly important European dimension of spatial planning and spatial development.

In the first part of the lecture, the competences and initiatives of the European Union are presented. The main focus is on the European Spatial Development Perspective and the Territorial Agenda of the European Union. Based on the presentation of these basic documents of European spatial development policy, aspects of implementation will be addressed. This includes, for example, cross-border cooperation or planning (formerly INTERREG, now European Territorial Cooperation) and ESPON (European Spatial Observation). In addition, the spatially effective specialist policies of the EU that go beyond spatial planning are addressed. Particular attention is paid to structural and regional policy (Structural Funds). Other spatially relevant policies are transport policy, environmental policy, competition policy and agricultural policy.

The second part is devoted to a detailed introduction to various European planning systems, including the Netherlands, France, England, Italy, Poland, Sweden and Switzerland.

The lecture seminar will be guided by the following questions: How far has the European integration process progressed in the fields of spatial planning, urban policy and spatial development? What are the goals of European spatial development? What means does European spatial development policy use? What are the consequences for spatial planning on the levels of nation states, regions and municipalities? Is there a Europeanization of spatial planning systems in Europe? How do the spatial planning systems in the states of Europe differ? Can we learn from the Netherlands or France?



Ritter, E.-H. 2009: Europäische Raumentwicklungspolitik. Rohn-Verlag: Dortmund

Dühr, Stefanie; Colomb, Claire; Nadin, Vincent 2010: European Spatial Planning and territorial cooperation. Routledge: London

Vincent Nadin & Dominic Stead (2012): Opening up the Compendium: An Evaluation of International Comparative Planning Research Methodologies, European Planning Studies, 1–20, iFirst article

Faludi, A. 2010: Cohesion, Coherence, Cooperation: European Spatial Planning Coming of Age? Routledge: London



B.Sc. RP (2012): Successful completion of modules 1, 2, 8, 9 and 12 to take the module exam (deadline: exam registration).


Performance record

Examination: Module examination (graded)

Type of examination: Oral examination (20-30 minutes)

Examination content: The contents and competences listed in the module handbook are relevant for the examination (conveyed via all elements of the module); examinees can make suggestions for examination topics.

B.Sc. RP (2012): Assigned elective courses (2 in total):Two out of three courses have to be taken

Prof. Dr. Karsten Zimmermann

092012e | Seminar | 2 SWS | English | 4 Credits

Day             From  To         Place                                                             Start           End

Tuesday   10:15   11:45   Storey Construction III Room 214  12.04.2023  12.07.2023

Not applicable 07.06.2022 (excursion week)

moodle room


Neighborhood redevelopment is an old topic in urban planning. However, the purpose of urban renewal has changed with the emergence of new issues such as renewable energy, climate change preparedness (Climate Improvement Districts, green infrastructure) and reindustrialization (Cities of making). We are also seeing new governance techniques and experimental collaborative approaches. In this course we will start with the emergence of urban renewal in Western Europe. We will then discuss the aforementioned changes, the role and influence of EU urban policy, and place a special emphasis on emerging issues such as suburban renewal. We will also learn about urban regeneration in France (Politique de la Ville) and England. International students will learn about urban renewal in Germany.

Active Participation:

Students will make presentations in groups of two.

Recommended reading (all available digitally in our library):

Empfohlene Literatur (alle digital in unserer Bibliothek verfügbar)

Peter Roberts, Hugh Sykes & Rachel Granger (2017) Stadterneuerung. SAGE Publikationen

Zimmermann, Karsten; Fedeli, Valeria (eds.) (2020) The modern guide to national urban policies in Europe. Edward Elgar, Cheltenham. (open access)

Ralf Zabel, Youngsang Kwon (2021) Entwicklung der Förderprogramme für Stadtentwicklung und Stadterneuerung in deutschen Städten, Cities, Band 111,


M.Sc. Spatial Planning (2012): Prerequisite for passing this course is proof of successful active participation according to §19 MPO. This includes the following requirements [ to be completed by the lecturer ]. In addition, participating students may take a graded examination (module sub-examination). The choice of the form of examination (usually oral examination or term paper) and its execution are governed by the examination regulations and the module handbook.


Dr. Patricia Feiertag

092012b | Seminar | 2 SWS | English | 4 Credits

Day            From  To       Place                                                          Start               End

Thursday 8:30  10:00  Sorey Construction I Room 301  06.04.2023  13.07.2023

moodle room


Enrollment in this course is limited. The application process for all courses begins at the beginning of the semester. Additional information and deadlines will be posted on the faculty website, via email, and at the introductory meeting.

Certificate of Achievement:

M.Sc. Spatial Planning (2020): Prerequisite for passing this course is proof of successful active participation according to §22 MPO. Student performance is evaluated based on:

1) active participation in seminar discussions

2) oral presentation

3) final paper

Students are required to participate constructively and actively in seminar discussions. All students are required to individually prepare an oral presentation and submit a final paper.

Dr. Stephan Treuke

0920386 | Seminar | 2 SWS | English | 4 Credits

Day           From  To        Place                                                            Start               End

Tuesday 16:15  17:45  Storey Construction III Room 214  04.04.2023  11.07.2023

Not applicable 16.05.2023 (excursion week)

moodle room


In this course we will focus on the ongoing transformation processes of the Metropole Ruhr in the context of sustainable spatial and urban development. In this sense, we will examine how this post-industrial space has embarked on the path to sustainable transformation and how the region is dealing with current social, economic and environmental challenges. In addition, we will examine different concepts of regional governance that have been implemented so far in the Metropole Ruhr in order to identify the main opportunities and obstacles for future regional urban and spatial planning strategies, especially with regard to climate change adaptation. The event aims at an interdisciplinary and international dialogue on urban transformation and offers a project-oriented approach to spatial development based on several field trips directly related to the Emscher Reconstruction and the program "Zukunftsinitiative Klima.Werk" (Emschergenossenschaft).


Introduction, program overview, prerequisites for participation The Metropole Ruhr: An example of the transformation of a post-industrial region The cornerstone of regional change: the IBA Emscher Park (1989-1999) Regional governance and current approaches to urban and spatial development in the Metropole Ruhr The Metropole Ruhr in international comparison: Transformation processes in post-industrial urban regions in Europe The Metropole Ruhr in international comparison: transformation processes in post-industrial urban areas worldwide Transformative governance: The key to success for a regional approach to sustainable spatial planning and urban development The Emscher Cooperative: portrait of a river manager (excursion to the Emscher, e.g. Emscherland) The Emscher Reconstruction: a driver for sustainable urban and regional development (excursion Emscher Reconstruction, e.g. Oberhausen pumping station / Bottrop wastewater treatment plant) Living in the new Emscher Valley: assessing new work, leisure, mobility and housing concepts along the Emscher and its tributaries New challenges in adapting to climate change: heavy rains, floods and droughts in the Metropole Ruhr Linking climate change adaptation measures and transformative governance: The "Future Initiative Klima.Werk" (field trip to GVMA, Oberhausen) Rebuilding urban ecosystems: Water-based solutions to increase biodiversity in the Emscher-Lippe region (excursion Blue Classroom / Lippe Floodplain Experience Area) Outlook and future perspectives: opportunities and obstacles for a regional transformation strategy of the Metropole Ruhr.

Certificate of achievement:

M.Sc. Spatial Planning (2012): Prerequisite for passing this course is proof of successful active participation according to §19 MPO. This includes the following requirements [ to be completed by the lecturer ]. In addition, participating students may take a graded examination (module sub-examination). The choice of the form of examination (usually oral examination or term paper) and its execution are governed by the examination regulations and the module handbook.

Dr. Prof. Karsten Zimmermann

093052 | Seminar | 2 SWS | English | 2 Credits

Day          From To        Place                                                        Start               End

Monday 10:15  11:45  Storey Construction I Room 410 03.04.2023 10.07.2023

Not applicable 15.05.2023 (excursion week)

moodle room


The purpose of urban and regional development planning is to initiate, plan, program and implement balanced and sustainable socio-economic development. This is a long-term process involving various actors and institutions, both governmental and non-governmental, which must negotiate common goals and be coordinated through appropriate organizational structures and procedures. The choice of organizational and administrative measures can significantly affect the ability of regions to achieve established goals. It is therefore particularly important for development planners to have a sound knowledge of governance and decision-making processes, as well as current discourses on state modernization.

The goal of the course is therefore to (1) introduce students to the theoretical foundations of decision-making, (2) familiarize students with institutional change, (3) learn about organizations (including learning theories), and (4) gain an appreciation of state modernization (e.g., decentralization, multi-level governance).

The course includes analysis of original texts, presentations, and discussions to identify the use of theoretical approaches for practical planning.

By the end of the course, participants will have the analytical ability to link theory-based knowledge to complex, real-world conditions of planning structures at the city and regional levels. They will be able to assess site-specific institutional and organizational structures in terms of their evolution, sociocultural context, and political-administrative environment.


The language of the seminar is English.

The registration procedure for all courses takes place at the beginning of the semester. Information and deadlines will be posted on the faculty website, by email, and at the information and orientation session prior to the start of the courses.

This course is appropriate for graduate students.

Record of Achievement:

Participating students will be asked to submit an individual essay at the end of the seminar. More information will be provided during class.


Past projects