International Doctorate Programme European Urban Studies (IPP-EU)

IPP-EU Program

Research Focus –  Urban Housing and Forms of Living

Cities in Europe are being confronted with new challenges in the face of increasing social inequalities, demographic and lifestyle changes and expectations for ecological development. These processes require new, innovative approaches to urban development which build upon existing urban structures. Housing in urban areas represents a central cross-disciplinary issue, within which societal problems – which have decisive effects on individuals and their quality of life –  can be seen more acutely. The topic of urban housing is thus an area of research which comprises both abstract considerations about societal forms of cohabitation, and how politics and urban planning implement these ideas, as well as concrete, spatial-morphological, architectural and economic dimensions of urban planning. Understanding the complexity of this area of research, a comprehensive analysis must go hand in hand with recognising the need for alternative concepts for housing policy in the fragmented city. 

The International Doctorate Programme “European Urban Studies” is therefore focusing research on the transformation of European cities with a focus on (multidimensional) housing policy, in the context of current societal challenges – such as climate change, social fragmentation, spatial disparity, cultural differentiation, immigration and the transformation of the real estate economy – and what these challenges imply for the cities of Europe. 


Research Areas

With this call, the International Doctorate Programme “European Urban Studies” is concentrating on research projects which address one of the following research areas specifically, but which can also be linked to at least one of the other research areas.


Housing Policy and Urban Development

At the focus of this research area is social housing provision and how it is developing in the context of a transformation to the welfare state and urban development. Research projects will be considered which look at the functional, institutional and urban-spatial transformation of social housing planning.


Housing Forms and Social Diversity

In this context, research should focus both on particular social groups’ specific needs with respect to housing forms, as well as on inquiries into innovative housing concepts.  


Inhabiting Urban Landscapes

Urban landscapes are explored as complex, socioeconomic and ecological patterns of relations. This research focus aims to find future-oriented and landscape-related housing and forms of living in the context of current urban landscapes, as well as sustainable forms of urban development and city-regional development based in use of open space and landscapes.


Housing, Urban Renewal and Heritage

This research area focuses on contemporary urban redevelopment projects with a focus on housing. On the one hand this might comprise an analysis of the socio-spatial and urbanistic, the political and housing policy contexts and effects; on the other hand, questions on how to deal with existing urban structures and on the discursive (re-)negotiation of urban heritage shall be explored.



Concept of Supervision

Accepted doctorate students will be supervised mainly by one professor, chosen according to subject relevant expertise. Two advisory meetings should take place each semester, to which colleagues (other Professors) can also be invited.
The programme aims to provide a cooperative form of research supervision. Doctorate students are invited to participate in courses and research activities offered by their supervising chair or by other participating chairs. A course plan will be discussed in advisory meetings. In addition, the programme aims to include doctorate students in teaching by building on their expertise in existing courses, providing the possibility to teach courses, work on research applications, prepare and implement workshops, conferences and more. Common publications are a further option.
In addition, graduate students have the opportunity to participate in extracurricular language courses and international network events to facilitate integration at the Bauhaus-Universität Weimar.


Participating Chairs

Prof. Dr. Frank Eckardt (Coordinating Chair), Urban Studies and Social Research

Prof. Dr. Barbara Schönig, Urban Planning

Prof. Dr. Sigrun Langner, Landscape Architecture and Landscape Planning

Jun.-Prof. Dr.-Ing. Daniela Zupan, European Cities and Urban Heritage



Dr.-Ing. or Dr. phil.

Application Information

IPP Network

The IPP European Urban Studies was established as part of a nationwide network of International PhD Programmes, which, within the framework of the programme "Doctorates at Universities in Germany (PHD)", were endorsed by the German Research Foundation (DFG) and the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD). It is the only IPP in Germany that is dedicated to urban research. By supporting structured doctorate programmes, the DAAD and DFG work toward the implementation of national recommendations for graduate education reform. Structured doctorate programmes were funded at research centers of scientific excellency.