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Department of Spatial Planning

Reviving shrinking cities – innovative paths and perspectives towards livability for shrinking cities in Europe (2019-2022)

Foto of the RE-City Team

The Innovative Training Network “Reviving shrinking cities – innovative paths and perspectives towards livability for shrinking cities in Europe” (RE-CITY ITN) will expand state-of-the-art knowledge on shrinking cities by exploring and evaluating new approaches and success factors for regenerating urban areas facing demographic and structural change.

The project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under the Marie Skłodowska-Curie grant agreement No. 813803.
Through interdisciplinary, joint research training implemented at partner institutions, the RE-CITY ITN aims to train 13 Early Stage Researchers (ESRs) in four key research themes: conceptualising shrinking smart, governing, greening/right-sizing, and regrowing shrinking cities.
Ultimately, RE-CITY is expected to build a new generation of highly-skilled experts as well as to develop new knowledge and novel solutions for promoting livability in shrinking environments.

The ESRs will be hosted at one of the nine beneficiary-institutions of RE-CITY located in eight countries (Germany, United Kingdom, France, Luxemburg, Netherlands, Portugal, Poland and Mexico). In addition to beneficiary-institutions, the RE-CITY consortium includes seven partner-institutions and companies from four countries (Germany, Netherlands, USA and Japan.)

Through co-supervision by academics and non-academic partners, the ESRs will develop their individual research projects by engaging in a critical, practical, creative and cross-cutting exploration of the above-mentioned research themes. In addition to undertaking doctoral research, the ESRs will be involved in a series of research collaborations (secondments), workshops and training schools in order to acquire skills and expertise in tackling social, economic and ecological challenges linked to policy agendas dealing with urban shrinkage.

Within the framework of the RE-CITY ITN, the Department of Spatial Planning and Planning Theory will host two ESR positions working on the following individual projects:

In addition, the department will host the secondment of M.Sc. Victoria Pinoncély (ESR #1) working on “Strategies for shrinking cities from historical perspective-path dependencies and learning from failures of the past” under the supervision of Prof. Dr. Emmanuèle Cunningham Sabot (École Normale Supérieure Paris) and Prof. Dr. Thorsten Wiechmann.


Project Coordinator:     Prof. Dr. Karina Pallagst, M.Sc. René Fleschurz (Technische Universität Kaiserslautern)

Contact ROP Team:        Prof. Dr. Thorsten Wiechmann, Dr. Letizia Imbres, M.Sc. Ruiying Liu, M.Sc. Anastasiya Matyushkina

Cooperation Partners : Technische Universität Kaiserslautern (Germany), Cambridge Architectural Research (UK), École Normale Supérieure Paris (France), Spatial Foresight (Luxemburg), University of Amsterdam (Netherlands), University of Porto (Portugal), Adam Mickiewicz University Poznań (Poland), University of Guadalajara (Mexico), Bertelsmann Stiftung (Germany), Energy Agency Rhineland-Palatinate (Germany), Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research (Germany), Netherlands Expert Centre on Demographic Change (Netherlands), Kent State University (USA), Fresh Völklingen GmbH (Germany), Nomura Research Institute Ltd (Japan).

Project Homepage:   RE-CITY ITN Web Site

Tallinn Street Quarter, Riga, Latvia


Prof. Dr. habil. Thorsten Wiechmann

Dr. Letizia Imbres

M.Sc. Ruiying Liu

M.Sc. Anastasiya Matyushkina

Duration of the project:
01.04.2019 to 31.03.2022

Funding source: European Un­ion’s Horizon 2020

Location & approach

The campus of the Technical University of Dortmund is located near the freeway junction Dortmund West, where the Sauerland line A45 crosses the Ruhr expressway B1/A40. The Dortmund-Eichlinghofen exit on the A45 leads to the South Campus, the Dortmund-Dorstfeld exit on the A40 leads to the North Campus. The university is signposted at both exits.

The "Dortmund Universität" S-Bahn station is located directly on the North Campus. From there, the S-Bahn line S1 runs every 20 or 30 minutes to Dortmund main station and in the opposite direction to Düsseldorf main station via Bochum, Essen and Duisburg. In addition, the university can be reached by bus lines 445, 447 and 462. Timetable information can be found on the homepage of the Rhine-Ruhr transport association, and DSW21 also offer an interactive route network map.

One of the landmarks of the TU Dortmund is the H-Bahn. Line 1 runs every 10 minutes between Dortmund Eichlinghofen and the Technology Center via Campus South and Dortmund University S, while Line 2 commutes every 5 minutes between Campus North and Campus South. It covers this distance in two minutes.

From Dortmund Airport, the AirportExpress takes just over 20 minutes to Dortmund Central Station and from there to the university by S-Bahn. A wider range of international flight connections is offered by Düsseldorf Airport, about 60 kilometers away, which can be reached directly by S-Bahn from the university's train station.