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Comparing Apples and Oranges? A Colloquium on International Comparative Urban Research


We live in an increasingly urbanized world. However, this simple and undisputable fact tells us little about how urbanization trends impact the form and functional patterns of cities.

Scholars have attempted to categorize and problematize the evolving urban forms using an array of conceptual frameworks including post-suburbanization, polycentricity or – in recent times – reurbanization.

But do these notions carry the same meaning when used in different cultural and political contexts? What can we learn from comparing demographic processes, policy environments, and urban morphologies across metropolitan areas of different countries?

Even though scholars agree that international comparisons are a powerful tool to analyze urbanization patterns and test theories, comparing cities and metropolitan areas in different world regions poses a multitude of methodological challenges.

This colloquium will bring together urban researchers addressing the complexities of conducting systematic internationally comparative research utilizing both quantitative and qualitative methods.

The colloquium is embedded in a research project on reurbanization patterns in Germany and the US funded by the German Research Foundation (DFG). It will serve as a forum for an exchange of practical experience with a focus on both methodological standards and the results of cross-national comparative research.

Host Institutions:
ILS – Research Institute for Regional and Urban Development and
Städtebau-Institut, University of Stuttgart

Conference language is English.

Registration deadline is 15/12/2014

Registration is necessary, but no fee is required to participate.

Please contact:
Julia Risse

Weitere Informationen:

Tanja Ernst | idw - Informationsdienst Wissenschaft

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