This fellowship is situated within the context of my doctorate at the University of Antwerp. My doctorate’s hypothesis is that since the 2008 financial and economic crises, alternative ways of urban development took place, which resulted in several shifts in the development of housing projects.


overzicht manchester web01

mapping development projects in Manchester


Within the broader context of my doctorate, the research, done within this fellowship, will focus on metropolitan governances as an actor during the 2008-2018 period. The first results from the doctorate, looking at Lyon and Manchester, have shown the importance of the metropolitan level. By good governance, these metropolitan authorities could start up alternative ways of activating the (international) market (Manchester) or attract European or national funding (Lyon) for the development of their major urban housing projects. The cases have also shown that the crisis has bought these metropolitan regions some time to consider the interrelated nature of many of the key issues or themes in their region and, for some cases, this has led to an improved joined up thinking.

Via interviews, research of policy documents and literature review, five European metropolitan regions will be researched. This includes how shifts took place within the metropolitan organisations, and how the relation between these organisations and other actors (other governmental levels, private sector, communities and third sector) has shifted. From these inventoried shifts, only the shifts that have resulted in alternative instruments, programs or projects will be further looked into via mapping.



In the first year, the input will be collected from interviews with key players in several metropolitan regions. These interviews will result in a report and a visualisation, for each city, via the Multi-actor Perspective (indicating the shifts in actors) and Multi-level Perspective (indicating the shifts in themes).

The second year will be used to reflect on the results of these interviews and reflect to existing literature on this topic. The input and reflection will result in a paper en presentation that will be held on a Metrex conference. By doing so, the knowledge of alternative ways of urban development in Europe during the crisis can be exchanged for the common good of all.



Bernd Steinacher was the Chief Executive Director of the Verband Region Stuttgart and the Regional Assembly, the first metropolitan Parliament of its kind to be set up in Germany. The Fellowship supports a young planner from a Member region or area in the activities of METREX over the two years between biennial Confe­rences. More information here.