Ghent, my living town.
Ghent is a wonderful city to live in and to be proud of, sparkling of social and cultural life by a large amount of associations with companies, theatre and music groups, festivals and festivities, initiatives and combative people; also Transition Towns movement was launched at the end of 2008.
Disadvantage is the priority to the renewal of the historical centre, while 1/4 of the Ghent inhabitants is still living in poor conditions in the 19the century belt. In the last couple of years this trend has reversed; the city government now focuses slightly on the more disadvantaged neighbourhoods.
Member in Ghent, Belgium
Ghent University, Centre for Sustainable Development
Since 1995 the Centre for Sustainable Development Ghent, Belgium has built an expertise in policy research for the implementation of sustainable development from international to local level. Related to the water issue in strategic spatial planning a.o. the waterfront development for living, working, learning, recreating and care for nature and livable environment.
Ghent University has conducted various assignments at federal, regional and local public administrations, in exchange with the external field expertise and knowledge building and strengthening support for the deployment expands.
Since 2007 the University is also part of the Urban Policy Research Center (UPRC, www.uprc.ugent.be), a collaboration of researchers from the Department of Political Science (Center for Local Politics), the Department of Social Welfare Studies and the Department of Administration and Management (High College Ghent). The concept of 'urban policy' combines urban policy (local level) and urban (central government) and covers all the efforts of governments and social actors, central and local, aimed at strengthening the city and the urban. The concept of 'urban policy' covers all the efforts of governments and social actors, central and local, aimed at strengthening the city and the urban. The most relevant expertise of the CSD are:
• a broad and long experience in monitoring sustainability issues for cities and regions.
• since April 2005 (IWT-SBO) the SP2SP project focuses on 'sustainable land use’ in strategic projects. Based on good (international) practices conditions a guidelines are elaborated to put into practice.
• participation in 'Ecopolis Flanders’ (www.ecopolisvlaanderen.be, Dulomi VIBE) for a strategic choice of "responsible city, vital city and participatory city” through a guidance for the implementation of this holistic concept next to expert assistance in working groups with involved stakeholders for progressing local projects.
• strong knowledge building in strategic planning and urban development, as well in the transition management for more sustainability in project development in launching experiments, follow up and evaluation for new strategic paths (www.duwobo.be).
• dealing in the ROI-knowledge team (Interreg IV) for sharing experience of 8 partner cities, each focusing on a huge new waterfront development in their old industrial harbor: workshops, expert studies, study trips, conferences.