Program AESOP 2005 Annual Congress The Dream of a Greater Europe

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Since May 1, 2004, the European Union has ten new member states. While on first sight this date merely marked the enlargement of the territory of the European Union, it was a very special step - as some say - towards the "Europeanisation" of the European Union, which for the first time now includes countries which until 1989 belonged to the former "Eastern bloc" and which for the first time now embraces important parts of the Slavic-speaking world of Europe. The enlargement is a fascinating step in the slow process of this "peace project" of the unification of Europe, which not only creates cultural, economic, legal, social and democratic problems but under the "cohesion" principle of the European Union also poses a challenge to spatial planning in Europe. Vienna, traditionally a multicultural city, had been located on the "fringe of the western world" just 60 kilometres from the former "iron curtain" for more than 40 years, and all of a sudden found itself back at the centre of Europe. Vienna is a place where all the emotional, political and social consequences of the enlargement process of the European Union become acutely perceptible. The AESOP Congress will be dealing with the challenges this unification process poses for the planning profession in Europe. Is the European Union as the core of the European unification process becoming larger or greater? Is it a chance, a vision or a dream?
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