State of European Cities

Panel discussion hosted by LSE Cities

The State of European Cities Report, 2016 – Cities leading the way to a better future highlights how the unique characteristics of European cities can support European Union priorities of jobs and growth, migration and climate action. Cities boost innovation, embrace people from different backgrounds and reduce our impact on the planet. Cities that operate at the metropolitan scale and have sufficient autonomy and resources can better exploit these urban advantages.

The report was prepared to support the Urban Agenda for the EU and the new global Urban Agenda adopted. It was jointly produced by the Directorate-General for Regional and Urban Policy of the European Commission and UN-Habitat.


    Lewis Dijkstra


    Lewis Dijkstra is the deputy head of the Economic Analysis Unit of the Directorate-General for Regional and Urban Policy, European Commission. He is the editor the Cohesion Reports, which analyse economic, social and environmental issues in EU regions and cities. His latest work and publications cover topics such as regional quality of government, urban economic development, regional economic and demographic projections and the definition of cities. He works closely with the OECD, the World Bank, the European Environmental Agency, the Joint Research Centre and Eurostat. With these partners, he has launched projects on regional competitiveness, business demography, regional well-being, transport and demography among others. He holds a PhD in Urban and Regional Planning from Rutgers University, New Jersey, a MSc in Urban and Regional Planning from the London School of Economics and Political Science and a BA in Political Science from the University of Ghent, Belgium.


    Greg Clark

    Greg Clark is a global advisor for cities, major businesses, and investors. He works with leadership teams in global cities, global firms, global institutions, and at global gatherings. From 2008 to 2016 he was chairman of the International Advisory Board of the New York Regional Plan, Oslo Regional Strategy, Salvador, Vienna, and Sao Paulo Strategic Plans and he was International Advisor on the Metropolitan Strategic Plans of Rio de Janeiro, Barcelona, Gauteng/Johannesburg, Western Cape, Toronto, Glasgow, Mumbai, Turin and Auckland. He is a Board Member of The Board of Transport for London and chairs its Major Programmes Committee. He is author of 10 books on city & regional development. He has advised 20 National Governments on National Policies for cities and regions.

    Richard Brown

    Richard Brown is Research Director at Centre for London. He joined the Centre in 2014 from London Legacy Development Corporation, where he was Strategy Director, planning the transformation of London’s Olympic Park and the regeneration of the surrounding area.  Before that he worked at the Greater London Authority, first as Private Secretary to Mayor Ken Livingstone, and then as Manager of the Mayor’s Architecture and Urbanism Unit, which promoted architectural and urban design excellence in London’s policies and projects.

    Ricky Burdett

    Ricky Burdett is Professor of Urban Studies at the London School of Economics (LSE), and director of LSE Cities and the Urban Age project. He is a member of the Mayor of London’s Cultural Leadership Board, and was chief advisor on Architecture and Urbanism for the London 2012 Olympics and architectural advisor to the Mayor of London from 2001 to 2006. He was director of the International Architecture Exhibition at the Venice Biennale in 2006. With Deyan Sudjic he is co-editor of The Endless City (2007) and Living in the Endless City (2011) and, with Philipp Rode Shaping Cities in an Urban Age (2018).

    Alexandra Jones

    Alexandra is Chief Executive of Centre for Cities. She is an influential voice in the cities debate, regularly providing advice for senior policymakers in national and local government as well as Local Enterprise Partnerships and businesses. She is also chair of the London Stansted Cambridge Consortium and the Fast Growth Cities group, a Commissioner on the London Finance Commission and the Cardiff Capital Growth Commission, and is a member of the HEFCE Catalyst Fund panel.

    Tony Travers

    Tony Travers is Director of the IPA and also of LSE London.  He is a professor in the Department of Government. His key research interests include local and regional government and public service reform. He has been an advisor to the Communities & Local Government Select Committee and also to other Parliamentary committees. He has published a number of books on cities and government, including Failure in British GovernmentThe Politics of the Poll Tax (with David Butler and Andrew Adonis); Paying for Health, Education and Housing: How does the Centre Pull the Purse Strings (with Howard Glennerster and John Hills); The Politics of London: Governing the Ungovernable City and, most recently, London’s Boroughs at 50. He has chaired a number of official commissions, including the Independent Commission on Local Government Finance in Wales and the London Finance Commission.