Territorial rebalance in Madrid: debate with Madrid City Council

Eloy Cuéllar – City executive Manager. Madrid Municipality

Wednesday, 27th June, 18.15 – 19.30 

Madrid has historically been characterized by a high level of territorial unbalance from the point of view of social cohesion. This is because social vulnerability has been concentrating in some districts from the 1960s onwards, due to a dynamic consolidated along the following decades by the lack of policy attention, making Madrid the most segregated European capital according to academic studies (Leal y Sorando, 2015; Musterd, 2016). In 2015, the Municipality of Madrid set the achievement of social cohesion as a policy priority in its agenda, building on a territorial solidarity approach.  To achieve this, a new urban policy instrument was created: Territorial Rebalance Fund (TRF), based on a solid scientific methodology (AHP, Analytic Hierarchy Process) that is able to map social vulnerability with a relevant level of detail, taking into account the complex and changing nature of social vulnerability.

Social segregation and urban vulnerability are common problems in contemporary cities, especially in Southern Europe countries and Latin America, but that also is present in all the OECD sphere, as in North and Central European and North American cities. Increasing urban segregation is correlated with a reduction of social cohesion. In this context, the TRF tackles a widespread and potentially conflictive challenge of urban societies all over the world.

The AHP scientific methodology used by TRF for the budget allocation is quite objective and uses a relatively simple set of statistical data which is easy to replicate; AHP has allowed a quick, non-contested distribution of the financial resources of the TRF, which is commonly a main obstacle in complex initiatives.

The implementation of consecutive concertation and participative processes enables the adaptability of the instrument to very different contexts and local characteristics.


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