Re-Politicisation of the Public Space – Democracy in Municipalities: Requirements for housing solidarity

The neoliberal transformation of economy, state and society during the last twenty years yields serious repercussions on the capacity to act of communes in Germany and all over Europe. The cutting-back policies of national and local governments as well as the austerity policy of the European Union indirectly and directly impact the smallest administration units. Those are forced to take up ever higher credits to be able to fulfill their duties in the framework of services for the public. Consequently they are increasingly forced to withdraw from voluntary services. The beginning of the world economic crisis in 2008 has exacerbated the Europe-wide plight of communes. The debt level of cities, communes and districts has hit a record high in many places.

The consequences are dramatic: the living conditions of specifically the marginalised people and those at risk of poverty are deteriorating due to the massive social and cultural cutbacks. This is particularly revealing in the field of communal housing policies and with regard to more and more demands of good and solidary housing as one aspect of the social question.

Together with local politicians and activist from social movements as well as interested citizens we will exchange experiences and discuss possibilities and requirements of housing policies in communities as a basic political field of right to the city concepts. We are aiming at allowing a cross-border comparison and deliberating on alternative political concepts in communities.

The following questions are of particular interest:

  • How can we bring the central topic “housing policy” into public discussions on societal, communal and national level? Which are the main requirements and barriers?
  • Which are the central challenges for a solidary transformation of housing in Europe?
  • Is a European system, which while considering local conditions makes social housing possible everywhere, conceivable and financially affordable?
  • Which questions and conclusions or possibilities for political actions can I extract for my political context and how can I introduce them into local debates?

Location: European Parliament, Rue Wiertz, 1047 Brussels, Room AS P1 G
Time: 13 November 2015, 9:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Contact: Federico Tomasone,

The event will be translated simultaneously into English, French, German and Spanish. We will provide lunch and a snack in the evening. No further costs will be covered.

Registration is required by e-mail to by 1 November 2015. According to the security regulations of the European Parliament, we need the following information:

  • Surname
  • Name
  • Date of birth
  • Nationality
  • Type of identification (identity card, passport…)
  • Identification number

Please note: Security regulations and building works are currently causing delays at the entry. We kindly ask you to arrive at 9:00 a.m (9:30 a.m. at the very latest) at the entry Rue Wiertz.

A cooperation between the Brussels, Rhineland-Palatinate and Saarland Offices of the Rosa-Luxemburg-Stiftung, the Communal Academie of the Rosa-Luxemburg-Stiftung and the GUE/NGL Group in the European Parliament.