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Urban Renewal

The Urban Renewal chair of Prof. dr. Maarten van Ham is positioned within the Urban and Regional Studies research programme of the department OTB-Research for the Built Environment.


The research programme investigates the interrelationships between every-day social and spatial patterns, and the governance and growing complexity of neighbourhoods, cities and regions. The Urban Renewal chair specifically investigates neighbourhoods and cities as changing social sites and as sites of governance and civic action, including the effects of neighbourhoods on residents and how residents affect neighbourhood stratification.

Neighbourhoods are placed at the heart of our understanding of some of society’s most pertinent socio-economic inequality problems. Territorially, processes of increasing socio-spatial inequality are visible in all major European cities and concentrations of poverty often manifest themselves in deprived inner-city areas and peripheral housing estates. The objective of the chair is to develop a better understanding of the relationship between socio-economic inequality, poverty and neighbourhoods and the people- and area-based policies developed to combat these inequalities.

Research Themes

The research programme of the chair focusses on three strongly interrelated broad themes: 1) Neighbourhoods as sites of governance and civic action; 2) Neighbourhood change and stratification; 3) Neighbourhood effects. The chair has a strong international reputation for scientific research on urban regeneration, social-spatial segregation, neighbourhood effects, citizen participation, social innovation, local communities and self-organising governance in residential neighbourhoods.


Socio-spatial inequality, deprived neighbourhoods, and neighbourhood effects DEPRIVEDHOODS is a 5-year research project funded by the European Research Council with a 2 million Euro ERC Consolidator Grant awarded to Prof. dr. Maarten van Ham. The ERC project has started in August 2014 with 10 researchers in four countries (Estonia, Sweden, The Netherlands, United Kingdom).

Advanced decision support for Smart Governance
SmartGov is a 3-year research project funded through the ERANET Smart Urban Regions of the Future (SURF) fund. The project is a collaboration between the Netherlands, Austria, Spain and Cyprus, with Dr Reinout Kleinhans as the TU Delft PI. SmartGov will investigate how contemporary urban governance can be strengthened by offering decision support and two-way communication between citizens, governments and other stakeholders in (Smart) Cities.

Naam auteur: Webredactie
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