The production of space: polarisation and peripheralisation

This research area investigates the complex causes of unequal development in Europe. The researchers consider a wide range of spatial magnitudes, ranging from local studies to global interdependencies. One of their main objectives is to develop alternative perspectives for economically underdeveloped regions and investigate types of regional development that have been neglected by the public thus far.

More detailed …


Over the past few decades, the processes of social and economic integration in Europe have always been advanced with the aim of improving Europeans‘ living conditions and making them more evenly balanced. Common political values are to play a role here, as is free trade, a common market and a common currency. With its regional development policy, the European Union has also created an instrument that puts a lot of time and money into attaining a structural balance between regions of Europe. Efforts are being made at German and European levels to create equal living conditions. In spite of this, spaces often develop unevenly. And there are even indications that the gap between high-performance metropolises and structurally weak spaces is opening further despite equalisation policies. The research area that looks at the production of space relative to polarisation and peripheralisation probes the complex causes of spatially uneven developments in Europe. In doing so, it considers highly varying spatial scales, ranging from regional studies to global interrelations. A further aim is to develop alternative perspectives for structurally weak regions and to examine forms of regional development that have thus far attracted little attention from the greater public.


Research projects

Potentials of immigration for a sustainable regional development in Saxony-Anhalt   -  
RurAction – Social Entrepreneurship in Structurally Weak Rural Regions: Analysing Innovative Troubleshooters in Action  - European Training Network to tackle social and economic problems of rural regions 
Arrival Regions  -  
Future Strategies of North Saxony  -  
Long-term supply and mobility in rural areas  - A pilot project in the administrative district of Leipzig 
Industrial Heritage, Cultural Resources of Current Industries and Creative Pioneers – InduCult2.0  - Utilizing Industrial Culture in Central Europe 
Peripheral but global: World market leaders outside of agglomerations  - Project A2 – Collaborative Research Centre "Processes of Spatialization under the Global Condition" (SFB 1199) 
Framing the governance of core-periphery relations in Germany and Romania  - Subproject within the framework of the Initial Training Network RegPol² 
Socio-economic and Political Responses to Regional Polarisation in Central and Eastern Europe – RegPol²  - Marie Curie Initial Training Network 
IfL Research Workshop  - Concepts and methods in spatial research 

Completed projects

Relational perspectives on innovation activities of firms from peripheral regions   [completed 08/2017]
ira.urban  [completed 04/2017]
KULUNDA – How to prevent the next "Global Dust Bowl"?  [completed 03/2017]
Mining Cities in Central Asia and the South Caucasus  [completed 12/2016]
Leitlinien der (quantitativen) Wanderungsforschung am IfL  [completed 09/2016]
Groupement de recherche international  [completed 04/2016]
Leipzig 2030 – open-minded, sustainable, growing  [completed 03/2016]
Social change and the development of neighborhoods  [completed 03/2015]
WOMEN  [completed 12/2014]
Cross-border cooperation in the field of vocational training  [completed 10/2014]
AgroForNet  [completed 08/2014]
Adapt2DC  [completed 04/2014]
Mobility and labour market interdependencies in the EURES-TriRegio-Region  [completed 04/2014]