IMAGINATION: Handbook of Urban Governance of Free Movement in the EU Facts, implications and policies

EUKN, 2016


Intra-EU mobility from Central and Eastern Europe (CEE) to EU-15 Member States remains an important issue for policy makers, both in sending and in receiving regions. Since this form of mobility will continue at a relatively high level, a key question is how to manage the urban consequences.

The research project ‘Urban implications and governance of CEE migration in Europe’ (IMAGINATION), funded by JPI Urban Europe, offers a strong empirical basis for a better understanding of the increasing diversification of types of intra-EU mobile citizens, the consequences of intra-EU mobility for receiving urban regions and governance approaches for addressing these consequences. The handbook of Urban Governance of Free Movement in the EU aims to assist government officials and key urban actors with developing appropriate responses.

Key findings and main results from the IMAGINATION project are presented on the third chapter of the handbook. The results show that there is a clear link between consequences in different domains, ranging from labour market to housing, registration, social and political participation, language and education, and health care. However, issues often remain invisible or unnoticed due to a lack of information and data.

One of the main conclusions of the handbook is that the impacts of intra-EU mobility are most directly felt at the local level and that local authorities often initiate policies that are sometimes adopted nationwide. The current research shows that there is a need for a stronger involvement of the EU level to clarify issues regarding rights and regulations of mobile EU citizens and to provide information. These conclusions are an additional motivation for the establishment of the Urban Agenda for the EU and an improved coordination between European, national, regional and local authorities as proposed in the Pact of Amsterdam.