Die Mitglieder des inter- und transdisziplinären Förderschwerpunkts »Nachhaltige Entwicklung urbaner Regionen« veröffentlichen ihre Forschungsergebnisse an den verschiedensten, für die jeweiligen Forschungen und Praxisanwendungen geeigneten Publikationsorten. Neben den eigenständigen Projektergebnissen gibt der Förderschwerpunkt verschiedene eigene Publikationsformate heraus, in denen die internationalen Wissenschaftlerinnen und Wissenschaftler von SURE publizieren.

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Sustainable Building Arenas: Constructing a Governance Framework for a Sustainability Transition in Cambodia's Urban Built Environment


Transition governance approaches for the building sector have been discussed for more than a decade. Very little work has however moved beyond the socio-political contexts of
the Global North to scrutinize the spatial-institutional challenges of sustainability transitions in the Global South, or more illiberal contexts. Consequently, this paper introduces a transition governance framework, a Sustainable Building Arena (SBA), that addresses the contextual particularities of the urban building regime and its de/stabilizing factors in the case of Cambodia to inform transformational change.

The design of the SBA draws on the literature on urban transition management, transition management in the Global South, as well as transdisciplinary transition management arenas, and extends these concepts to Cambodia’s urban built environment. It furthermore builds upon the results of an extensive analysis of the sociotechnical system and an evaluation of residential buildings in Phnom Penh, including indoor environmental conditions. The SBA is conceptualized as an informal institution and as a protected and co-creative space at the science-policy-business-civil society interface. It allows sustainability-minded but often marginalized actors to co-produce and pluralize knowledge – including the co-development of problem framings, visions and transition strategies – and facilitates cooperation, as well as the creation of alternative discourse coalitions and networks of social capital. Overall, the paper argues that such scientifically grounded and participatory processes, that are attentive to and designed for the particular spatial-institutional context, can indeed support the development of actionable knowledge, the empowerment of marginalized actors and support collective action for transformative change in the built environment sectors in contexts outside the Western liberal norm of transition studies


Informal Settlement Resilience Upgrading-Approaches and Applications from a Cross-Country Perspective in Three Selected Metropolitan Regions of Southeast Asia


Managing climate change is synonymous to managing cities and their growth. To shoulder the challenge of climate change adaptation, informal settlement upgrading in the global south has amounted to the importance of being attuned with the growth of its city and region at large. Changing the paradigm of on-site upgrading to being community-driven and city-led with domestic funding unlocks potentials for community resilience building, especially in countries that strive for inclusive growth.

This research looks into informal settlement development dynamics and its resilience stance in conjunction of the metropolitan growth in three Southeast Asian countries. Greater Manila Area, Bangkok Metropolitan Region and Hanoi Capital Region serve as the backdrop for this investigation. The research mainly addresses informal settlement upgrading roles, mechanism and approaches for resilience building in these three metropolises, meanwhile also unveiling their city-regional development needs. The methodological approach of this study is highly participatory, demonstrating a hybrid of multi-spectrum stakeholder workshops, online surveys (due to COVID), expert interviews, project interim reports and correspondence with the local expert team in the three countries, etc. The paper attempts at providing a cross-country appraisal of the central strategies of informal settlement upgrading, related institutional constellations and upgrading applications along with the three metropolises’ urban development. This attempt accentuates the pressing needs of mitigating multi-facet vulnerability of informal communities, who are the most adversely affected by climate change and rampant urbanization. Further, this research will also reveal the mindset change of how decision-makers and the public contemplate upgrading objectives, e.g., recasting secure tenure instruments.


Disaster Preparedness and Resilience at Household Level in Yangon, Myanmar

Publikation MYrisk Disaster Preparedness

Resilience has become important in disaster preparedness and response. Unfortunately, little is known about resilience at the household level. This study presents the results of a survey into individual and household level preparedness to disaster events in Yangon, Myanmar, which is prone to natural disasters such as tropical cyclones, fooding, and earth‑quakes. The study aimed to understand societal resilience and to provide information that could be used to develop a holistic framework. In four different Yangon townships, 440 households were interviewed.

The results of the survey indicate how risk preparedness could be improved by specifc measures related to the following fve factors: (1) increasing the general public’s knowledge of first aid and its role in preparedness; (2) improving mobile phone infrastructure and capacity building in its usage so that it can be used for communication during disasters, along with building up a redundant communication structure; (3) better use and organisation of volunteer potential; (4) more specifc involvement of religious and public buildings for disaster response; and (5) developing specifc measures for improving preparedness in urban areas, where the population often has reduced capacities for coping with food supply insufciencies due to the high and immediate availability of food, shops and goods in regular times. The fndings of this survey have led to specifc recommendations for Yangon. The identifed measures represent a frst step in developing a more general framework. Future research could investigate the transferability of these measures to other areas and thus their suitability as a basis for a framework.


Transdisziplinäre Begleitforschung – Herausforderungen und Ansätze einer wirkungsorientierten Stadt- und Raumforschung

Publikation Begleitforschung

Vor dem Hintergrund der weiterhin rasanten Urbanisierung vor allem in Afrika sowie Ost- und Südostasien stellt sich die Frage nach Konzepten für auf Nachhaltigkeit ausgerichtete Städte. In dem Kontext stehen Stadt- und Raumforschung zunehmend vor der Frage, wie ihre Ergebnisse zur urbanen Transformation beitragen können und wie sich Wirkungen von transdisziplinären Forschungsvorhaben erfassen lassen. Mit dem Ziel, Impulse für eine dauerhafte Implementierung nachhaltiger Stadtentwicklungsstrategien zu setzen, fördert das BMBF seit 2019 mit dem SURE Förderschwerpunkt zehn Projekte in Südostasien und China. Teil des Förderschwerpunkts ist die transdisziplinäre Begleitforschung, die einen methodischen Ansatz etabliert, um die Wirkung von Stadtforschung im Kontext rasanter Urbanisierung herauszustellen. Hierzu wird ein wirkungsorientiertes Monitoring vorgeschlagen, das einen Referenzrahmen umfasst und dessen theoretische sowie methodische Konzeption in diesem Beitrag thematisiert wird.

State of the Vietnamese Coast – Assessing Three Decades (1986 to 2021) of Coastline Dynamics Using the Landsat Archive

FloodAdapt Publikation 2022

Vietnam’s 3260 km coastline is densely populated, experiences rapid urban and economic growth, and faces at the same time a high risk of coastal hazards. Satellite archives provide a free and powerful opportunity for long-term area-wide monitoring of the coastal zone. This paper presents an automated analysis of coastline dynamics from 1986 to 2021 for Vietnam’s entire coastal zone using the Landsat archive.

The proposed method is implemented within the cloud-computing platform Google Earth Engine to only involve publicly and globally available datasets and tools. We generated annual coastline composites representing the mean-high water level and extracted sub-pixel coastlines. We further quantified coastline change rates along shore-perpendicular transects, revealing that half of Vietnam’s coast did not experience significant change, while the remaining half is classified as erosional (27.7%) and accretional (27.1%). A hotspot analysis shows that coastal segments with the highest change rates are concentrated in the low-lying deltas of the Mekong River in the south and the Red River in the north. Hotspots with the highest accretion rates of up to +47 m/year are mainly associated with the construction of artificial coastlines, while hotspots with the highest erosion rates of −28 m/year may be related to natural sediment redistribution and human activity.


The Dynamics of Vegetation and Implications for Ecosystem Services in the Context of Urbanisation: An Example from Huangyan-Taizhou, China

Die Dynamik der Vegetation und ihre Auswirkungen auf die Ökosystemleistungen im Kontext der Urbanisierung: Ein Beispiel aus Huangyan-Taizhou, China

Urban sprawl and associated land use changes have been referred as primary drivers of environmental change. Yet it is unclear in detail how land use changes impact vegetative structures or ecosystem services and what the specific drivers of change are, especially in urban-rural interfaces in medium-sized Chinese cities. Our future contribution is intended to highlight the importance of urban-rural interfaces for sustainable land use and the development of ecosystem services.

To this end, we mapped the dynamics of land cover and the condition of vegetation as well as ecosystem services based on remote sensing data for the period of 1992–2020, to quantify these changes in Huangyan district, Taizhou, China. The results show a dramatic increase in urban area over the 28-year timeframe, i.e. 265% growth in Huangyan district. This rise was particularly evident in the period of 2015–2020. The huge expansion in urban area came at the cost of arable land. To compensate the resulting loss of farmland, large-scale natural ecosystems such as forests, grasslands and wetlands were continuously transformed into arable (as well as urbanized) land. Despite the dramatic reduction in green space as a result of urbanisation, we found a slight increase in the overall mean NDVI value for Huangyan, mainly due to the improved condition and density of remaining forest area in the western countryside. Further, we evaluated the provision of ecosystem services (ESS) by adapting an existing assessment methodology elaborated by Burkhard et al. (2012). The results show that ESS supply continually fell in Huangyan since 1992, reflecting a reduction of green space. The highest ecosystem capacity is seen in recreation and biodiversity due to the large proportion of forested area. Our findings serve as an important basis for further investigations in the region of Huangyan by framing the general issue of green space dynamics and highlighting specific developments of ecosystem distribution and change as well as ESS supply.