"No Trespassing", "Private Property" or "Bathing Only Allowed for Hotel Guests" - the frustration with the increasing privatization of lakes in Austria was one of the starting points for the course "Lake Sight". There is a broadly shared commitment to providing access to lakes for the wider public and to protecting natural areas from development. Nevertheless, shorelines are often occupied by private houses, hotels and infrastructural facilities. However, the issue is not limited to the questions of unrestricted lake access, shoreline development and privatization: Other important aspects include the spatial development of the open space around lakes, town expansions, second residences, the increasing pressure on real estate and property prices, and mobility issues. The management of natural hazards and climate change phenomena also plays an important role around lakes. From a spatial planning perspective, there has been little systematic research on Austrian lakes so far. The course "Lake Sight" provides a first impulse in this context.
Based on the results of the course, a small group of students set out to examine three large lakes - Wörthersee, Attersee and Neusiedlersee - even closer. In an effort to discuss the various issues and the associated challenges in a broader context, a future dialogue entitled "Über Seen" was initiated. The students learned to independently design and organize the event. At the future dialogue, stakeholders from politics, administration, planning and civil society were given an opportunity to discuss a wide range of issues associated with the development of Austrian lakes.
The results of the course and the future dialogue are presented in a comprehensive publication.