November 26, 2020

Urban-Rural (Dis-)continuities

Session #16 at International URP 2020 Conference · Online
Xi’fan Village, Hannes Langguth

'Urban–rural (dis) continuities': enhancing an understanding of urban-rural interactions to promote equitable, sustainable, and green urban transitions in Europe and China through nature-based solutions.

Session chaired by: Prof. Dr Philipp Misselwitz (TU Berlin) and Dr Ellen Banzhaf (Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research – UFZ, Leipzig).

Thu, 26 Nov 2020 - 13:30 (CET)

Conference Website & Registration
Full URP 2020 Conference Programme

Details on the sessions, programmes and contributions are available in the Mobile Event App

This conference answers the call for new integrated territorial planning approaches and people and place-based development at the urban-rural interface that aligns with the localisation of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the New Urban Agenda (NUA). The session assesses recent attempts to develop new approaches that account for manifold interrelations and linkages between urban and rural spaces. During rapid urbanisation processes, intricate urban-rural metabolisms can exacerbate environmental, social and economic sustainability problems. In this context, Nature-based Solutions (NBS) offer a useful conceptual framework to readdress multidimensional and multi-scalar contemporary challenges facing urban and rural areas, such as how to build climate resilience, address biodiversity loss, and promote better social equity.

The session invites an assessment of innovative sociotechnical and nature-based solutions facing socio-economic and environmental challenges by building on approaches including air pollution, noise, water risk and water quality management, waste management, resource efficiency, ecological food production, eco-tourism and the revitalisation of cultural and built heritage at the urban-rural interface. What are specific conceptual and/or practically-tested solutions? How do they impact the sustainable transformation of urban and rural spaces? Exemplifications may relate to the EC-funded REGREEN project for Europe and China ( and the BMBF-funded Sino-German research project “Urban-Rural Assembly (URA)” (

Papers to be discussed:

Assessment of Relationships between Land-use Changes and Socio-Economic Restructure at the Local Scale: A Case Study of Taizhou in China
Huang Huang; Sigrun Abels (TU Berlin); Suili Xiao; Wolfgang Wende (IOER, Dresden)

Cities at a cross-road: Nature-Based Solutions and meta-governance of urban green transitions in Europe
Anne Jensen (Aarhus University, Denmark); Duncan Russel (University of Exeter, UK).

A framework for multi-scale benefits in Urban-Rural interactions
Laurence Jones; David Fletcher; Vieno Massimo; Mike Hutchins; James Miller; Nuria Bachiller-Jareno (UK Centre for Ecology and Hydrology); Ellen Banzhaf; Julius Knopp (UFZ Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research, Germany); Jun Yang (Tsinghua University, China); Zhao Bin; Jun Ma; Wanben Wu (Fudan University, Shanghai, China); Yaoyang Xu (Chinese Academy of Sciences); David Neil Bird (JOANNEUM RESEARCH Forschungsgesellschaft mbH, Austria); Gregor Levin.

Nature-based solutions for Aarhus – potentials and gaps
Lene Vinther Larsen (Aarhus Municipality, Denmark)

Urban greening or browning? Observations, drivers and impacts: A lesson from 107 cities in China
Wanben Wu; Zhao Bin; Jun Ma (Fudan University, Shanghai, China)

Biodiversity patterns of woody plants under urban-rural gradients in Shenzhen, China
Xiangyu Luo; Jingyi Yang; Jun Yang (Tsinghua University, Beijing, China)

Resilience of the industrial growth and optimization of the spatial distribution in the developing county: the case study of Linqu County in China
Guiqing Yang; Daijun Song; Liyao Wang; Yuwei Zhang; Tian Qin (Tongji University, Shanghai, China)

Nature-based solutions in rural areas for urban flood protection
Marianne Zandersen (Aarhus University, Denmark)

Book of Abstracts (PDF)