PlanShrinking Workshop

The workshop took place on 28 September 2012 at the University of Kaiserslautern. At that time a short case study research on four shrinking cities, two in the USA and two in Germany, were finished. These findings were to kick off further discussions on urban shrinkage, the tools and methods used and how shrinkage has influenced and affected the planning culture in these cities and the national planning discourse.

The event was unique in its setting, presenting a cross-(planning-) cultural forum for the exchange of experiences and bringing together researchers and stakeholders from the USA and Germany, in particular from the case study cities, to discuss further research needs regarding changing planning cultures and shrinking cities.

In addition to researchers from the interdisciplinary fields of shrinking cites and planning cultures, stakeholders from planning practice will be involved. These actors are catalysts for applying and testing newly gained knowledge on changing conditions in urban and regional development with respect to shrinking cites.


During the workshop the participants discussed and addressed the following aims:

1. Discuss paradigm shifts, and possible changes in planning systems and planning cultures in view of shrinking cities in Germany and the USA.

2. Deliver first ideas for developing a toolset to evaluate planning strategies for shrinking cities.


Three aspects will be addressed at the workshop

Information: Which local conditions cause shrinkage in the respective case studies from the US and Germany?
Which concepts and instruments for dealing with urban shrinkage exist in the US and Germany, and which experiences where made in the different cultural settings?

Discussion: What are the applied actions and tools dealing with the existing problems caused by shrinkage, and are there signs of success? Have planning cultures already changed, or are they in the process of changing?

Outlook: Which cutting edge research questions should be addressed by future shrinking cities research in a German-American planning context?

Further Information on the Workshop

Main findings of the Workshop

Scientific Background of the Workshop

Programme of the Workshop

List of Workshop Participants

Evening Event Atlantische Akademie

Under the topic 'Shrinking Cities – In Germany, and in America? What we can learn from each other?', an evening event took place on 27 September 2012 in the German-American-Library in Kaiserslautern.

Here you can view the programme of this pre-event.