March 2016

C12-39 COMMISSION OF URBAN GEOGRAPHY : REPORT 2012-2016 | 1. Membership | 2. Meetings | 3. Networking | 4. Publications | 5. Archival contribution | Financial Report 2012-2016



1. Membership

1.A Committee 2012-2016

Professor Céline Rozenblat   University of Lausanne, Switzerland

Associated Chairs
Professor Adrian Aguilar   UNAM, Mexico
Dr. Daniel O'Donoghue   Canterbury Christ Church University, United Kingdom

Steering Committee
Prof. Ludger Basten   TU Dortmund, Germany
Prof. Liliane Buccianti-Barakat   Université Saint-Joseph de Beyrouth, Lebanon
Dr. Nico Kotze   University of Johannesburg, South Africa
Dr. Keisuke Matsui   University of Tsukuba
Dr. Lidia Mierzejewska   Adam Mickiewicz University, Poland
Professor Petros Petsimeris   University Paris 1, France
Dr. Maria Jose Pineira-Mantinan   University of Santiago de Compostella, Spain
Professor Ivan Townshend   University of Lethbridge, Canada

Young Scholars Committee Members
Dr Niamh Moore   University College Dublin, Ireland (Chair)
Dr Tetsuya Ito   University of Rissho, Japan
Dr Maria Jose Pineira Mantinan   University of Santiago de Compostela, Spain
Dr. Tomoko Kubo   Gifu University - Japan

1.B Members

The status of « member » requires the person to have attended at least 2 of the last 6 commission’s meetings. The membership list is updated every 4 years in order to elect the next commission’s project. The update of 2015 reveals an increase of people attending regularly: 64 people came at least twice since 2010 (see the table below).

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The table identifies this group of 64 people coming regularly. They constitute the core of the Urban commission. They come from 19 countries and contribute and participate very actively to its debates.

In total, 265 different people attended our own meetings over the past 6 years at least once, coming from a total of 44 different countries (not counting each person several times).

The commission mailing list ( counts 640 subscribers (28th February 2016).


2. Meetings

Each year between 2012 and 2016, the Urban commission organized events in at least 2 meetings:
- the annual meeting of the Commission
- sessions included in regional meetings or the IGC

Annual Urban Commission meetings

Year on year, we collectively decided a common procedure to organize our annual meetings:
1- The local organizers propose a special topic.
2- We also invite contributions on the topics of the Commission’s program 2012-2016:

- Technological Innovation and Creative Activities in Cities
- Complex Urban Systems
- Contested Social Spaces
- Creating Sustainability
- Dilemmas of Ageing Cities
- Increasing Insecurity
- Urban Heritage and Conservation
- Urban Governance
⇨ These topics and their precise concepts and theoretical foundations are the basis of discussions during meetings and evolve over the lifespan of the commission.
3- Since 2014, we decided to invite 1 or 2 keynote speakers (1 local, 1 international).
4- Urban field trips are organized during the meeting. They are included in the conference fees.
5- A pre or post-conference field trip is proposed to the meeting participants. They have to pay supplementary fees to attend.
6- A business meeting is held during each annual meeting, which encouraging debates on future projects of the commission.  Any decisions are voted upon by people in attendance.
7- As far as possible, the Urban Commission annual meetings take place in the same country as the regional meetings or IGC. However, it was not always possible to identify venues in the same country and other proposals were selected, by a public vote during the Business Meeting, usually two years in advance.

Participation to the Regional meetings and IGC
The committee participated actively in the general meetings organized by the IGU. Each year, we proposed a list of themes according to the commission program (6 for 2012, 8 from 2013 to 2015, 10 for 2016). We organized the numerous sessions in cooperation with the congress organizers and also held a business meeting at each event.
Every year, we co-organized several joint sessions with other IGU commissions (see the details below).

2.A.1 Main facts about Urban Commission Annual meetings (2012-2015)

Dortmund, August 2012: 60 papers from 20 countries
Organized by: Ludger Basten, Lienhard Loetscher
Special topic: Transformation of the Urban + 14 thematic sessions

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2.A.2 Main facts about participation in the Regional congresses and IGC (2012-2015)


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Synthesis of the numbers of papers in the Commission meetings, Regional congresses and IGC
All commission meetings 2012-2015 and participations to IGC since 2013 (not including Cologne meeting where we did not gain representative statistics).

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2.C.1 Commission Annual Meeting in Shanghai and IGC Beijing (2016)

Shanghai, August 15-20 2016 – Urban Commission annual meeting
Co-organized by the Urban Geography Commission IGU (IGU-C12-39), East China Normal University & Center of Urban Studies and Urban Planning, The University of Hong Kong, and Urban Geography Committee, Geographical Society of China (UGC-GSC)
CONFERENCE VENUE: East China Normal University, 3663 North Zhongshan Rd., Shanghai, 200062

Keynote speakers:
- Allen SCOTT (Distinguished Research Professor, University of California – Los Angeles)
- Fulong WU (Professor of Planning, Bartlett School of Planning, University College London

Call for abstracts with a special focus on Governing Globalizing Cities
+ 11 revised themes of the commission :
1- Complex Urban Systems and processes of cities’ transformation
2- Technological innovations, creative activities in cities
3- Innovative and smart building and transportation in cities
4- Polycentrism, small and medium size cities
5- Sustainable to resilient cities
6- Shrinking and aging Cities
7- Urban Governance, planning and participative democracy
8- Contested Social Spaces
9- Subjective/objective Well-Being in cities
10- Urban Heritage and Conservation
11- New concepts and methods in urban studies
(Streaming and record of some sessions in collaboration with the Digital Campus of Complex Science CS-DC UNESCO: the request was sent one month ago and are we waiting to the organizers’ agreement).

Beijing, August 21-26 2016 – IGC
10 themes proposed for the Commission sessions (Streaming and record of some sessions in collaboration with the Digital Campus of Complex Science CS-DC UNESCO: to confirm)
4 joint sessions with other commissions:
- Cultural aspects of sustainable urban development
with C12.07: Commission on Cultural Approach in Geography
- A Woman’s Place is in the City!
with C12.10: Commission on Gender Geography
- Human Mobility and Urban Vulnerabilities
with C12.17: Commission on Global Change and Human Mobility
- China’s great urban transformation: multidisciplinary research on urban China
with Urban Geography Research Committee, Geographical Society of China;
and Urban China Research Network;
Keynote speaker for IGC: Denise Pumain (Professor University Paris 1, former chair of the commission) 

2.C.2 Planned Future Commission Annual Meetings (2017-2020)

Commission meeting – Salvador de Bahia

- Commission meeting – Calgary or Montreal
- Regional conference - Quebec (Canada)

Commission meeting – Luxembourg

- Commission meeting – Baleares? Greece? Barcelona? Beirut?
- IGC conference - Istanbul


3. Networking

Collaboration with other commissions of IGU

Collaboration for sessions during the general IGU meetings 2012-2016:

- C12.07: Cultural Approach in Geography
- C12.10: Gender Geography
- C12.14:Geography of the Global Information Society
- C12.17: Global Change and Human Mobility
- C12.30: Mediterranean Basin
- C12.38: Transport and Geography

- Springer book in homage to Sir Peter Hall with the commission C12.38 Transport and Geography

Project of meetings in collaboration with:
- C12.30 Mediterranean Basin
- C12.38 Transport and Geography

United Nations Habitat
- Book in preparation for the Habitat III – October 2016

Complex Science Digital Campus CS-DC Unitwin UNESCO
Participation to the E-Department TIMES: Territorial Intelligence for Equity and Sustainability
⇨ Possibilities of E-Conferences and E-learning (in progress)


4. Publications


• Rozenblat C., Pumain D., Velasquez E.: International and Transnational perspective of Urban systems, in progress with UN Habitat, expected to be published in MIT Press
• R.D. Knowles and C. Rozenblat (eds.), Sir Peter Hall: Pioneer in Regional Planning, Transport and Urban Geography, SpringerBriefs on Pioneers in Science and Practice 52,
DOI 10.1007/978-3-319-28056-1



• Maseratu Hino and Jun Tsutsumi (eds.) (2015), Urban Geography of Post-Growth Society, Selected papers of the IGU Urban Geography Commission sessions in the Kyoto Congress 2013, with the support of the Japanese Association of geographers, Tohoku University Press, Sendai
• Wayne K.D Davies (Ed.) (2015): Theme Cities: Solutions for Urban Problems, Springer
• Moore-Cherry N., Pineira-Mantinan M-J. (2015) Addressing Complex Challenges: Social, Economic and Cultural Transformations in the City, Young Scholar Vol.4, Santiago de Compostella: IDEGA, USC and IGU Urban Commission



• O'Donoghue D. P. (Ed.) (2014) Urban Transformations: Centres, Peripheries and Systems. Selected papers of the IGU Urban Geography Commission 2011 in Canterbury.
• Kotze N., Donaldson N. and Visser G. (2014). Life in a Changing Urban Landscape. Proceedings of the IGU Urban Geography Commission 2013 in Johannesburg and Stellenbosch (Urban challenges in a complex world) Edited by the University of Johannesburg, Johannesburg
• Mierzejewska L., Parysek J. (ed.), 2014. Cities In a Complex World: problems, Challenges and Prospects. Poznań: Bogucki Wydawnictwo Naukowe (274 p.)


•  Pineira Mantinan M.J. & Moore N. ed. 2013, Transforming Cities: Urban Processes and Structure, Geography Young Scholars Vol. 3. Santiago de Compostela: IDEGA, USC and IGU Urban Commission.



• Pineira Mantinan M.J. & Moore N. ed. 2012, Changes in the City, Geography Young Scholars Vol. 2. Santiago de Compostela: IDEGA, USC and IGU Urban Commission.

For future publications, we propose an increased focus on special issues or books that may be based on the annual meetings according to the specificity of the hosted city. Publications should be in accordance with special topics announced in the call for papers of future meetings.

Young Scholar’s annual publication
To download the volumes or papers in PDF format:

Newsletters: yearly and archives since 2010 on the website


5. Archival contribution

The commission’s WEBSITE archives publications from 1984:

Open diffusion of news on the mailing list:

Publication and archives of the news on the website homepage:
- World conferences on urban topics
- Positions
- New books

the “IGU Urban Commission” FACEBOOK Group:


Financial Report 2012-2016

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