UNIC Centre for City Futures

A living laboratory for societal impact - we strive for transformations with our cities and communities.

How the Centre Works

The UNIC Centre for City Futures consists of ten local centres that harvest understanding of specific needs of their regions and tailor activities to suit these needs. These local centres are closely interconnected to match-make city-engaged research and learning, contributing to both local and transnational urban challenges.

Together all ten centres constitute the UNIC Centre for City Futures and are united by a shared vision and mission for urban impact, improvement and European transformations. Within their respective contexts, they employ a centralized open discovery process for city impact making with co-creation and inclusion at the heart of all operations.

The Centre's Mission

At the heart of our mission is to understand complex societal phenomena in our ten UNIC cities and to envision attractive futures that overcome urban challenges. Guided by these future objectives, we strategize and build local and transnational partnerships able to contribute to societal improvement. Our living laboratory provides pathways and tools for impact-oriented research, education, and innovation.

By linking ten university-city contexts, we form a large-scale transnational living laboratory, where UNIC CityLabs provide unique access to innovative data sources and opportunities for challenge-based learning and City-Engaged Research. Operating in genuine real-world settings, our CityLabs bridge the gap between theory and practice. They bring people together from different backgrounds to identify needs and challenges, envision preferable futures, and to develop, test and refine solutions.

We are committed to bringing the needs of cities and communities into learning and research. In return, the cities and communities are enriched and improved by the contributions of our researchers, teachers, and students. These contributions and operations are consistently assessed to ensure meaningful societal impact.

Read more from our Founding Charter [PDF, 1mb]

Our unique infrastructure provides a model for learning and research to serve society.
It is powered by 10 interconnected units with local transformation-making focuses.
Together they form a large-scale transnational living laboratory for European impact.

City Futures Roadmaps

Together with our cities and stakeholders we identify city challenges and integrate them into research and learning.

We build strategic partnerships and engage with cities, communities, the private sector, other organizations, and citizens to drive meaningful societal change.
UNIC CityLabs

We specialize in co-creation practices that connect academic expertise with societal actors, turning cities into living laboratories tackling urban challenges.


Learn more about the Centre's work by participating in one of our forthcoming events. Contribute your insights, ideas, and solutions, and find ways to collaborate with us:


A Just Transition for Cities – Mandate, Materiality, Morality and Moxi...

With support from the UNIC4ER Seed Fund, an interdisciplinary collaboration between colleagues...

28 Feb 2024 - 29 Feb 2024

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VIRTUAL CONFERENCE: “New Research Approaches to the Crossroads of Reli...

Launch of the new European Research Network for Religion, Society and Culture UNIC-RESCUe,

11 Dec 2023 - 12 Dec 2023

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citylabs vmp

Gender and equality from an institutional perspective. Strategies and ...

UNIC CityLabs is organizing an online event on the topic of gender and equality. The event is ...

06 Jun 2023 - 06 Jun 2023

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citylabs vmp

Social Inclusion and Living in Community for Persons with Intellectual...

A Virtual Meeting Platform that discusses the different aspects of deinstitutionalization and ...

25 May 2023 - 25 May 2023

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citylabs vmp

Towards more Societal Engagement & Inclusion in Medical Practices

This special event brings together medical faculties across the UNIC alliance to talk public h...

16 May 2023 - 16 May 2023

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Exploring the connection between food and migration. Innovations and C...

UNIC CityLabs is organizing an online event on the topic of Exploring the connection between f...

24 May 2023 - 24 May 2023

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Contact the Centre for City Futures

Join us in shaping the future of cities towards more sustainable, inclusive, and resilient!

The UNIC Centre for City Futures serves as the intermediary between UNIC universities, cities, and organizations
interested in societal improvement. Our Local Directors, Co-Creation Specialists, and Engaged Research Officers
help create partnerships able to strive for societal improvement.

With their help you can connect cities’ needs into learning and research and enrich and improve cities and communities
with the contributions of researchers, teachers, students, and citizens.

Email us

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