Hub Themes & Tracks

The umbrella theme of the second Housing Forum Europe & Central Asia was ‘Promoting Sustainable Housing Futures for All’.

While the ongoing economic, financial, environmental, and political crises continue to affect the housing sector, some countries and actors are exploring new and innovative means to solving a wide array of housing challenges. Their solutions are complex and address disparate issues such as environmental sustainability, old and decaying housing stock, poverty and exclusion, ageing populations, the lack of affordable housing, ineffective financial regulation, vulnerable populations, natural and civil disaster response and prevention, and high energy consumption. Numerous barriers to entry to both the private and social housing markets persist, as do obstacles to building and renovating homes to meet decent standards in tenure, adequate living space and durable construction.

At present the issue of housing is highly controversial, and consequently the sector remains fragmented. Furthermore, housing is generally low on regional developmental agendas, which impedes any progress that might be made if more attention was given to this pressing topic. While many organizations and agencies are promoting decent housing in Europe and Central Asia, with significant areas of overlap between their agendas, there is no common regional approach. A more concerted effort to address housing challenges might produce more effective and lasting solutions. As an initiative that explores the uncertainties facing the housing sector in the region from a wide variety of perspectives, and as an event that creates opportunity for exchange across disciplines and sectors, the Housing Forum Europe & Central Asia aimed to be an important catalyst for integration and progress in the regional housing sector.