In 2017, the European Week of Regions and Cities will reach its 15th birthday. It is a moment of both looking back and looking forward, whilst tackling the challenges that the EU regional and urban policy should be addressing, as of today, and over the coming years. The debate on Europe's future was kick-started by the Rome Treaties' anniversary (in March) and will continue to unfold throughout 2017. The European Week of Regions and Cities will be an opportunity for EU regions and cities to contribute to this debate and to feed into the political mainstream examples and inputs from the regional and urban angle to shape Europe's future. Moreover, the European Week will discuss the Cohesion Report and the EU multiannual financial framework 2020-2026, and thus be a key platform for gathering and presenting the views of the regions and cities on both the budget and the subsequent legislative proposals with regard to cohesion policy and rural development. Europe's regions and cities face major challenges with profound consequences, such as adaptation to globalisation and to a new wave of automation in the workplace, as well as an urgent need to integrate migrant populations. These challenges can be turned into opportunities for economic and social progress, provided that the right policies and programmes are implemented at all levels.