Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS


The URBEX programme that was carried out over the years 1999-2001 aimed at answering the following questions: How do different categories of 'socially excluded people' cope with their situation and how do they try to participate or even integrate in the urban society in various neighbourhoods, in different urban, regional and state contexts? What are the relevant modes of economic integration that are available to them? How do they use the available opportunity structures? What are the strategies (and trajectories) of each of the targeted individuals or households and how do these relate to the available neighbourhood, city, and state resources? And particularly: How do different neighbourhoods impact upon the opportunities and perspectives of individuals and households? Are neighbourhood impacts conditioned by the state contexts, by the wider metropolitan structures and by the specific neighbourhood site and characteristics?
These questions were addressed in an international comparative research programme and focused on respondents ('people at risk') in two neighbourhoods per city (one centrally located mixed tenure, another peripherally located homogeneous public rental estates), in eleven cities (Amsterdam, Rotterdam, Brussels, Antwerp, London, Birmingham, Berlin, Hamburg, Milan, Naples and Paris) in six EU countries. Data on the types of welfare state, on the economic structure of cities and their metropolitan area, and on the social networks of people were obtained through various sources, including written documents and statistical data. The main sources of information were primary interview data obtained from over six hundred members of the target groups we identified (long term unemployed, unemployed immigrants, and single mothers without a job) and from several hundreds of key-actors in the field.

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