The European Commission has adopted a communication entitled "Towards an urban agenda for the European Union" aimed at opening the dialogue on the future of urban development in Europe. The Commission's communication sets out a strategy for a coordinated and coherent response to cope with the increasing number of urban problems. Commenting on the communication, Ms. Monika Wulf-Mathies, Commissioner responsible for regional policy, noted that "As concern with urban development is rising, the moment is right for launching a wide debate on the future of European towns and cities and on the contribution of policies at European level". The Commission's paper will contribute to the discussions within the "European Summit of the Regions and Cities" which will take place in Amsterdam, The Netherlands, on 15-16 May 1997. It will also be examined at the informal ministerial meeting on regional policy and spatial planning that will be held in Noordwijk in June. The Commission's intention is to bring the outcome of the debate to an "Urban Forum" that may be organized in 1998.