14 November, 2019
On 14 November 2019, the EUKN, together with ESPON and the Czech Ministry of Regional Development, organised a Policy Lab on the topic of Functional Urban Areas (FUAs). The Policy Lab, which took place in Prague, explored different interpretations of the notion of "functionality" in metropolitan and cross-border areas, as well as applicable methodologies for defining the parameters and perimeters of functionality. It also showcased examples from practice of both metropolitan governance and cross-border cooperation projects.
The objectives of the seminar were clearly presented by Ms. Marie Zezulkova, head of the Regional Policy Department of Czechia, who opened the day and reiterated the key role that functionality plays for Czechia. In light of the ongoing discussion around the recharacterisation of a new Leipzig Charter, to be coordinated by the German Council Presidency in 2020, Ms. Zezulkova highlighted the need for cooperation with both the EUKN and ESPON in order to support the sharing of experiences, the co-definition of problems as well as of conditions for cooperation.
During the day, experts were grouped according to the categories of "researchers" and "practitioners". In order to reflect the wide diversity of challenges as well as envisaged solutions, experts illustrated case studies from different EU countries and experiences in cross-border and metropolitan FUAs. This format allowed for a double perspective on the topic, which ultimately led to a more comprehensive understanding of FUAs' nature and characteristics.
The Policy Lab closed with a moderated discussion under the Chatam house Rule, so that participants could freely and safely exchange opinions on this sensitive topic.
EUKN and ESPON are currently working on the report of the event to become soon available on this page.