Global Urban Studies Institute (GLOBUS)

Global Urban Studies Institute (GLOBUS)

Adresse Grimmstrasse 12b
D-10967 Berlin

Prof. Dr. Kosta Mathéy
Dipl.-Ing. Silvia Matuk (Stellvertretende Leitung)

Telefon +49 (0)30 95 60 95 75 ; +49 (0) 170 711 3337
E-Mail (Auskunft) ;



The Global Urban Studies Institute 

The Global Urban Studies Institute, GLOBUS, of the Free University of Berlin is dedicated to international urban development planning with a focus on newly developing economies in Asia, Africa, and Latin America. The basic philosophy of the GLOBUS Institute is grounded in the experience that conventional text-book knowledge does not provide adequate guidance in directing balanced urban growth in these regions. In addition to conventional spatial planning, a strong emphasis must be attributed to:

  • Interdisciplinary cooperation
  • Social integration with pro-poor recognition
  • Cognizance of the challenges precipitated by competitive globalization
  • The promotion of local identities in development processes
  • Mitigation and adaptation of the threat of disasters and change of eco-systems
  • International networking
  • An evidence based theoretical foundation
  • Orientation along visionary long term scenarios
  • Planning of processes rather than structures

The activities of the GLOBUS Institute rely on more than 30 years of experience in international cooperation projects, field research, and academic instruction in over 40 countries wordwide. The institute relies on a large network of associate members and partner institutions. It is closely linked to the TRIALOG Research Association and its professional network, the United Nations Human Settlement Programme (UN-HABITAT), ARCHIMED academic publishers, and a number of highly recognized international universities .

Activities of the GLOBUS Institute fall into three main fields:

RESEARCH:  Own empirical research and coordination of research teams and networks, documentation, and publication of research results.

CONSULTANCY: To municipalities and international cooperation agencies such as GIZ, KfW, UN-HABITAT, ILO, EC etc.

TUITION AND TRAINING: Tailor made training courses on emerging aspects of urban development planning; curriculum development for postgraduate higher education institutions; organization of international conferences; among others.

Community Based Urban Violence Prevention Research Project

As the latter half of the 20th century has witnessed violence and crime rates soar in many urban centers of developing countries, the research project Community Based Urban Violence Prevention (U-CARE) has been lead by the GLOBUS Institue since 2008 to explore and evaluate experiences and potentials of community based and participatory governance strategies for violence prevention in different urban settings. Methodologically the venture is based on field studies conducted in Nairobi (Kenya), Johannesburg (South Africa), Yaoundé and Douala (Cameroon), and their comparative analysis through the joint team of researchers from these cities. The project aims to strengthen research capacities in cities of the Global South, reflect on the advances in the fields of urban violence prevention, local governance, and urban planning, and build a strong interdisciplinary network capable of addressing the problems of rising violence, particularly in Sub-Saharan African and Latin American cities.


Concept and Coordination from the GLOBUS Institute Berlin

  • Director - Prof. Dr. Kosta Mathey

  • Program Coordinator - Nicholas Kasang

Networkpartners in Sub-Saharan Africa

  • Prof. Dr. Kengne Fodouop, Christophe Sados, Université de Yaoundé I, Département de Géographie, Yaoundé, Cameroun

  • Prof. Dr. Alan Mabin, Obvious Katsaura, University of the Witwatersrand, School of Architecture and Planning, Johannesburg, South Africa

  • Prof. Dr. Washington H. A. Olima, Prof. Dr. Winnie Mitullah, Romanus Opiyo, University of Nairobi, School of the Built Environment, Nairobi, Kenya

Previous Collaborators

  • Prof. Dr. Peter Gotsch, Technische Universität Darmstadt, Darmstadt, Germany


Project Deliverables

Since 2008, the project has documented, evaluated, and transferred best practices in community based crime prevention strategies from the three Sub-Saharan metropolises.  Moreover, the U-CARE Project has sought to provide a comprehensive analysis of the local conditions of the study sites, prepare practice documents, train young scholars, and communicate research results with the communities of the case study sites.

U-CARE International Conference

June 5th-7th 2014!

In conjunction with the conclusion of the current cohor, the experieces of the three research cities will be presented during the initial U-CARE international conference, Community Based Urban Violence Prevention: Strategies & Experiences, which will held in Berlin, Germany from Jun 5th-7th, 2014. The three day conference will highlight the research of U-CARE scholars pertaining to communal mechanisms of violence prevention in Sub-Saharan Africa. Furthermore, experiences of communal based violence prevention in countries of varying developmental contexts will likewise be explored during the event. Click here for more details.

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