The cross-border metropolis hypothesis: Back to the source

Project Details


The project The cross-border metropolis hypothesis: Back to the source is a visiting research proposal aiming at the secondment of one of LISER's researchers, Christophe Sohn, at the:
- Center for U.S.-Mexican Studies based at University California San Diego's School of Global Policy and Strategy, the most prominent policy research institute on the US-Mexico border in North America (0.8 FTE)
- Department of Geography, University of California Los Angeles, one of the top ranked departments of geography in the world (0.2 FTE).
The objectives of this visiting research initiative are three-fold. They comprise (i) research actions, (ii) capacity building and (iii) networking.
Research activities are the primary focus of the intended visit. Two projects will be pursued during the 12 months foreseen for the visit. They build upon and develop Christophe Sohn's research agenda focusses on cross-border metropolises, taking advantage of the expertise of and collaboration with resident UCSD/UCLA researchers as well as the relevance of the location San Diego for building a grounded research.
The first project takes stock of the visiting researcher's work on the role of borders as a resource and seeks to explore the virtues of a Europe-North America dialogue that aims at context-sensitive comparative analysis. The second project intends to assess the process of the social production of the cross-border metropolitan space through a triadic approach sensitive to the multiplicity of bordering dynamics and inspired by the work of Lefebvre.
A second purpose of this visit is to further enhance the research potential and outreach of the visiting fellow (and by extension of his research group in Luxembourg) through (i) integration within the thriving academic community in San Diego and Los Angeles, and (ii) the building of a grounded expertise on cross-border urban and regional planning and economic development in a comparative perspective. The relevance of these research areas for the department of Urban Development and Mobility at LISER, which focuses most of its research on the processes of cross-border metropolitan integration underscores the collective added value of this visit in terms of research expertise and international reputation.
Finally, and in line with the foregoing, the secondment will be an opportunity to consider future joint projects and establish long-term partnerships between LISER and key US academic partners in the field of border studies framed in relation to a comparative dialogue.
Effective start/end date1/08/1631/07/17


  • Border
  • Metropolis
  • Cross-border integration
  • Comparative analysis
  • Urban geography
  • Europe
  • North America