The Institute



DURAND Frédéric

Urban Development and Mobility
Tél.: (+352) 58 58 55 - 307

Frédéric DURAND holds a Phd in Geography from the University of Paris X-Nanterre (France, under the supervision of Professor Jean-Luc Piermay). The dissertation focused on the border's dynamic and the metropolitan construction of the conurbation of Katowice in Upper Silesia. His first expert contract (2009) still concerned the metropolitan issue in Upper Silesia in the frame of the European program INTERACT. With an international research team, the aim was to compare the regionalization and metropolization processes as well as the economic recovery in France (Valenciennes), Poland (Katowice) and Turkey (Karabück).

During 2009-2010, Frédéric DURAND made his Post-doctorate at the Luxembourg Institute of Socio-Economic Research (LISER). The research project, called CROSSPLANNING, combined three research domains: border studies, spatial planning and urban studies. Its goal was to compare the planning strategies in a cross-border metropolitan context through the study of two case studies: Luxembourg and the Greater Region and the Eurométropole Lille-Kortrijk-Tournai. This post-doctoral research was part of a European project (METROBORDER) funded by ESPON, supported by Luxembourg's national planning authority (DATer) and conducted by eight research institutions. Between 2010 and 2012, Frédéric DURAND was involved in the MetroNet Project whose the objective was to analyze the structure of cross-border policy networks in the field of public transport and regional marketing in Basel, Lille, Luxembourg, and Vienna-Bratislava, using social network analysis.

Since 2012, three fields of research characterize his scientific profile: border studies, spatial planning and urban studies. Combining them allows to investigate the issue of spatial development at the cross-border scale, in particular within the cross-border metropolitan regions in Europe. Hence, he has been able to develop knowledge on specific topics such as cross-border governance, cross-border spatial planning, cross-border integration (EUBORDERSCAPES). His research activities attempt both to contribute to scientific debates by providing empirical analysis and conceptual thinking to better apprehend and understand the socio-spatial phenomena that frame border regions, and to bring some academic knowledge and operational support for decision-makers at local, national and European levels (ODS, Greater Region). His willingness is therefore to provide scientific expertise to identify and better grasp the societal needs and challenges encountered within cross-border areas through academic productions and reports for public authorities as well. Methodologically speaking, he uses a diversified spectrum of quantitative (spatial analysis with GIS, social network analysis…) and qualitative (semi-structured interviews, workshops with stakeholders,…) approaches to address these specific issues.

Today, his research interests are at first to pursue the ongoing reflection on the spatial development of cross-border area by analysing the impacts but also the driving forces and obstacles of cross-border integration on space (functional specialization of space, increase of socio-economic inequalities, re-bordering trends linked with Euroscepticism or populist movements), notably through the CECCUT Jean Monnet Network which investigates the role of culture - in particular European Capital of Culture - in urban cohesion within cross-border areas. The objective behind is to develop a critical look at the cross-border integration process (which has usually a normative acceptation but which is more complex than the one often described) and to assess its quality. The idea is to enhance the understanding of the mechanisms of this multidimensional process which affects more and more often the socio-spatial practices, perceptions and behaviours of populations as well as the location choice of entrepreneurs and citizens. Secondly, in a spatial planning perspective, he is interested in the elaboration and implementation of territorial strategies within cross-border areas. For this purpose, he is currently involved in the INTERREG project Territorial Development Scheme of the Greater Region whose aim is to design a strategic document at the scale of the cross-border cooperation perimeter.

Ongoing projects



  • MARLIER Eric, BROSIUS Jacques, DAUTEL Vincent, DECOVILLE Antoine, DURAND Frédéric, GERBER Philippe, GUIO Anne-Catherine (Eds.). Cohésion sociale et territoriale au Luxembourg. Regards croisés. Éditions Peter Lang, 2014, 301 p.
  • DURAND Frédéric. La dynamique des frontières en Haute-Silésie - La Haute-Silésie, un laboratoire vivant des frontières. Editions Universitaires Européennes, 2010, 505 p.

Book Chapters

Contributions to Conference Proceedings


  • DURAND Frédéric. La dynamique des frontières en Europe centrale - Villes et frontières en Haute-Silésie (Pologne). University of Paris X. Nanterre, 2008, 600 pages.

LISER collections