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Current research projects

GFA_Stadt - "Health Impact Assessment (HIA) in urban development"

The primary target of the projected research on „Gesundheitsfolgenabschätzung in der Stadtentwicklung" (GFA_Stadt) ("Health Impact Assessment (HIA) in urban development"), is to develop a widespread, integrated and participating model for the Health Impact Assessment – HIA in German municipal areas. To support this in the practical field, the project use an online tool. HIA is a way to find out how measures that are taken in a different field of politics are compatible to the interdisciplinary subject health. Thereby should it possible in one way to increase the chance of social participation and a healthy and liveable life and in the other way reduce the social disparities. For this, it is necessary to change two different levels: In urban planning it is required to find strategies that integrate the different aspects of health more in the planning process. read more

Funded by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF - Bundesministerium für Bildung und Forschung)
Project management: VDI Technologiezentrum GmbH
Duration: 10.2020 to 09.2023


Integrating disadvantaged populations through strategies and instruments for promoting social coexistence in neighbourhoods – StraInQ

People from EU member states, especially Romania, Poland and Bulgaria, constitute the largest group of immigrants in Germany. One of the key challenges for local integration work is how to enable members of the stigmatized Roma minority access to various areas of society, given their personal circumstances, the strained housing market in large cities and the discrimination evident at various levels of society. This research project aims to identify and develop strategies and instruments which encourage the socio-ecological integration of these particularly disadvantaged groups into urban neighbourhoods. Drawing on the research results of StraInWo, the predecessor project on housing market integration, the focus will now be on integrating disadvantaged populations into urban neighbourhoods and existing communities. read more

Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF)/ DLR Project Management Agency (German Aerospace Center), 05.2020 to 04.2022


Digitalization in higher education – development, testing and evaluation of media-based modules with e-learning methods

As part of an overall transformation of society, digitalization influences formal and informal educational processes. Increasingly flexible and individual demands on contemporary learning are changing the educational habits of students. Digital tools can effectively connect knowledge transfer, self-efficacy, and collaborative work to the achievement of module-specific learning goals. Universities and higher education institutions can thereby strengthen their role as centres of knowledge replication while simultaneously empowering students to actively shape transformational processes. The project "Digitalization in higher education – development, testing and evaluation of media-based modules with e-learning methods" aims to develop a new teaching concept for higher education that promotes digital learning arrangements in the field of urban and spatial planning.
 read more


BMBF Research Project HeatResilientCity

Heat-resilient urban and neighbourhood development in large cities - resident-oriented knowledge generation and implementation in Dresden and Erfurt

Increasing heat stress is one of the most acknowledged and serious consequences of climate change in urban areas. The joint research project HeatResilientCity aims at developing and implementing innovative, socially fair, and adaptive measures to reduce thermal stress at neighbourhood level, both in buildings and in open spaces. Selected neighbourhoods in the cities of Erfurt and Dresden serve as ‘living laboratories’. Here, preventive measures with regard to individual behaviour and construction are tested by means of knowledge transfer, participation, and physical implementation.

Research questions

  • How can both the quality of life and attractiveness of urban neighbourhoods be preserved and improved from the residents’ perspective?
  • How can buildings be adjusted to meet social needs without increasing energy consumption?
  • How can urban spaces be preserved and improved in order to optimize their potential ecosystem services while keeping costs in mind?

read more

Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF), duration: 10/2017 to 09/2020; follow-up project HeatResilentCity II, duration: 02/2021 to 01/2023


Strategies and instruments for integrating particularly disadvantaged population groups into the housing market as part of a sustainable transformation process of urban neighbourhoods - BMBF research project StraInWo

Refugees and disadvantaged EU immigrants (e.g. Roma) are part of the current transformation of the urban housing market. Especially in large cities, they compete on the housing market with other low income groups. Low income, lack of German language skills or stigmatization impede their access to affordable housing. However, the successful social integration of refugees and immigrants is regarded as a key factor for a sustainable and resilient development and transformation of neighbourhoods.

The StraInWo research project aims to identify strategies and instruments for better integrating disadvantaged population groups into the housing market. Case studies focus on the integration of refugees (Lübeck) and Roma (Berlin). The project will result in recommendations for a culturally and refugee-friendly urban development for municipalities, housing companies and stakeholders at federal and state level.

read more

Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) / German Aerospace Center e.V. (DLR), 07.2016 - 06.2020


Sharing Economy - Models of sustainable consumption in the housing industry (KoSeWo)

The research project focuses on potentials and future trends of collaborative innovation processes in the housing industry in terms of sustainable consumption patterns in residential areas. This is related to current housing policy debates about more affordable housing. The contribution of models of sustainable consumption for low-income households will therefore be given particular attention. The main objectives of this research project are:

  • Surveying and classifying existing models of sustainable, collaborative consumption in the housing industry
  • Determining and appraising the possible potential of a future implementation of sustainable consumption models in the housing industry
  • Identifying opportunities, threats and effects of promoting collaborative consumption in the housing industry
  • Identifying potentials and conflicts between models of collaborative consumption and the supply of affordable housing

The research aims to provide recommendations for the housing industry and an outlook on the future development of this topic.

read more

Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) / VDI/VDE Innovation + Technik GmbH, 08.2015 - 10.2017


DBU model project EnWoKom: Energy efficiency and the housing industry - Testing of environmental communication concepts for an energy efficient behaviour of residents in existing housing complexes in Erfurt and Kassel

As a point of contact for residents and a potential cooperation partner, housing companies play an important role in implementing climate change objectives on a local level. In addition to technological innovations, energy savings and increasing energy efficiency, the energy consumption behaviour of private households is one of the determining factors in the energy transition.

In collaboration with two housing companies participating in the pilot project, methods of information and participation are to be tested und further developed, with a view to contributing to a more energy efficient behaviour of residents. As a result, successful strategies will be developed to strengthen energy efficient and sustainable behaviour as well as significantly improve the carbon footprint of the residents within the pilot neighbourhoods. Furthermore, recommendations regarding the development of communication processes and strategies for implementing the energy transition will be provided for the housing industry and local administrations.

read more

German Federal Environmental Foundation (DBU), 06.2013 - 04.2018



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