The future of cities: opportunities, challenges and the way forward

21 November 2019

This report is an initiative of the Joint Research Centre (JRC), the science and knowledge service of the European Commission (EC), and supported by the Commission's Directorate-General for Regional and Urban Policy (DG REGIO).

It highlights drivers shaping the urban future, identifying both the key challenges cities will have to address and the strengths they can capitalise on to proactively build their desired futures. The main aim of this report is to raise open questions and steer discussions on what the future of cities can, and should be, both within the science and policymaker communities. While addressing mainly European cities, examples from other world regions are also given since many challenges and solutions have a global relevance.

The report is particularly novel in two ways. First, it was developed in an inclusive manner – close collaboration with the EC’s Community of Practice on Cities (CoP-CITIES) provided insights from the broader research community and city networks, including individual municipalities, as well as Commission services and international organisations. It was also extensively reviewed by an Editorial Board. Secondly, the report is supported by an online ‘living’ platform which will host future updates, including additional analyses, discussions, case studies, comments and interactive maps that go beyond the scope of the current version of the report. Steered by the JRC, the platform will offer a permanent virtual space to the research, practice and policymaking community for sharing and accumulating knowledge on the future of cities. 

Chapter 7 is focusing on ageing and highltights a number of issues on how cities shall adapt to the demographic change.

To read the full report, please click here.