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Social housing: a service of general interest to guarantee decent, energy-efficient and affordable accommodation for all?

A European Economic and Social Committee Conference

Brussels, 4 December 2019Save the date

Given that the danger of excessive housing costs no longer affects only the most disadvantaged, but an ever-growing part of the population, the purpose of housing policy must not be restricted to assisting vulnerable individuals. It must also promote the supply of affordable homes for all, ensure that housing matches family needs, promote high-quality, energy-efficient housing, a social mix within buildings and urban areas, and tackle segregation. In this context, the EESC will hold a conference which will take place on Wednesday, 4 December 2019, starting at 10h00 at the EESC premises in Brussels

Draft Agenda

9:30     Welcome address

10:00 - 13:00   Housing crisis in the European Union: a major cause of the erosion of its economic, social and territorial cohesion

Welcome address by Mr. Pierre-Jean Coulon, President of the Section for "Transport, Energy, Infrastructure and the Information Society"

Nicolas Schmit, European Commissioner for Employment (to be confirmed)

Frans Timmermans, Vice President for "European Green Deal" (to be confirmed)

Ambroise Fayolle, Vice President of the European Investment Bank (confirmed)

Exchange of views with the participation of

  • The State of Housing in the EU 2019: Cédric Van Styvendael, president of Housing Europe
  • Housing expenses overload, consequences: Barbara Steenbergen, head of the EU liaison office and member of the executive committee, International Union of Tenants (IUT)
  • Emmanuelle Causse, International Union of Property Owners, director of European Affairs
  • Energy efficient housing: representative of Energiesprong H2020 (tbc)
  • Housing Partnership of the EU Urban Agenda: what recommendations? Michaela Kauer, Co-coordinator of the EU Urban Agenda Housing Partnership, Director of the Brussels Liaison Office of the City of Vienna
  • European Citizens' Initiative Housing for All: Karin Zauner-Lohmeyer, spokesperson
  • Elena Szolgayová, chair, Committee on Housing and Land Management, United Nations Economic Commission for Europe


14.30 – 17.30   How can we encourage Member States to invest heavily in affordable, decent and energy-efficient housing, while respecting the principle of subsidiarity?

Exchange of views with the participation of

  • A 2019-2024 European Action Plan for affordable housing in the EU: Laurent Ghékière, Union sociale pour l’habitat, president of Housing Europe's European housing observatory
  • The housing element in the European Green Deal: Pascal Canfin, Member of the European Parliament, chairman, Environment, Public Health and Food Safety Committee (tbc)
  • Evaluation of the decision on social housing SGEI, Monique Negenman, Head of Unit DG COMP, European Commission – State aid Postal and other services
  • European Pillar of Social Rights: Access to Social Housing: Josefine Hederstroem, Deputy Head of Unit DG EMPL, European Commission, – Social investment strategy
  • Housing and cohesion policies 2021-2027: Marek Teplanský, Head of Unit DG REGIO, European Commission – Inclusive Growth, Urban and Territorial Development (tbc)
  • Country recommendations – monitoring housing markets: Stefan Zeugner, Head of Unit DG ECFIN, European Commission – Macroeconomic imbalances and adjustment

The interpretation will be provided from/to: EN, FR, DE