On September 4, 2021, we had the opportunity to gather in person for the first time since the beginning of the pandemic. The UGoveRN Study Day was organised to celebrate this momentous occasion and to reflect on our progress over the years. It was an exciting day filled with insightful discussions, engaging presentations, and plenty of opportunities for socialising and networking.
The day began with a field trip to Zuidas, the financial centre of Amsterdam. Each member of the UGoveRN family was asked to present their view on the concept of urban governance at a spot they selected to talk about. This exercise enabled us to understand disciplinary differences and appreciate the diverse perspectives within our community. It also provided an opportunity for us to get to know each other better and to share our work with one another.
After the field trip, we had a lunch session where we discussed our progress and challenges. It was an excellent opportunity for us to reflect on our achievements and to set new targets for the future.
The main outcome of the day was the realisation of the power of having such an interdisciplinary platform. We agreed to link our work locked in different themes within UGoveRN, which we previously called ‘Chapters’, and to think of more joint and interdisciplinary activities across the themes Planning&Property, Law&Policy and Space&Society.
The UGoveRN Study Day was a tremendous success, and we plan to organise it as an annual activity going forward. We are looking forward to building on the momentum generated on this day and to exploring new avenues for collaboration and research. The power of interdisciplinary research is undeniable, and we are excited about the possibilities that lie ahead.
In conclusion, the UGoveRN Study Day was a celebration of our community’s resilience, perseverance, and commitment to urban governance research. We hope that this event will inspire other researchers to build interdisciplinary platforms and to collaborate across disciplines to address some of the most pressing issues facing cities today.