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Analysing synergies between urbanization and sustainable development: Developing a draft theory through historical pilot studies
KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Urban Planning and Environment.
2005 (English)Licentiate thesis, comprehensive summary (Other scientific)
Abstract [en]

Urbanization is an ongoing process all over the globe. People moving from rural to urban areas are the primary cause of urbanization, and history indicates that this movement of people is very hard to influence. The inflow of new residents to urban areas results in the need for more buildings and infrasystems, new institutions and often, new ways of life. How does this relate to the sustainability challenge? Given the ways in which most cities are currently developing, urbanization does not contribute to the achievement of sustainable development goals.

This thesis explores a new research strategy for studying the process of urbanization and how it may hold opportunities for addressing the long-term objectives of environmentally sustainable urban development. The research strategy: MAMMUT – Managing the Metabolism of Urbanization, is a methodological and conceptual framework, it is a dynamic and cross-disciplinary approach towards understanding urban sustainability.

The main novelty in this research strategy is to explore the use of situations of opportunity – instants when stakeholders have a possibility greater than average to guide and influence the urbanization process so as to contribute to more of environmental sustainability – as units of analysis. Political scientists have used concepts similar to this, however none is as wide in scope and time. Four aspects are analysed in a situation of opportunity: urban structure, institutional framework, new ways of life and environmental impacts – enhancing the cross-disciplinary approach of the framework. Also, in terms of time frame, the pre-history, the formative moment and the outcome of each situation are studied.

A cover essay and three papers compose this thesis. The papers apply and test the above-mentioned methodology in pilot studies about historical situations of opportunity created by the development of public transport systems in Stockholm, Dar es Salaam and Curitiba. The cover essay discusses the lessons learned with the pilot studies and aims at: (a) discussing and further developing the MAMMUT methodological and conceptual framework; (b) analysing the relations and synergies between the four aspects of urbanization (as proposed by MAMMUT’s framework).

The main conclusion of the thesis is that the MAMMUT research strategy can be a useful tool for analysing the urbanization process and its relations to sustainable development. Suggestions for improvements in the framework are made. Also, the four aspects of urbanization suggested for the analysis of a given situation are confirmed relevant, however the analysis of the relations and synergies between these aspects is revealed to be as important as studying the four aspects per se.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: KTH , 2005. , 50 p.
Series
Trita-INFRA, ISSN 1651-0216 ; 05:023
Keyword [en]
urbanization, sustainable development, historical pilot studies
National Category
Social Sciences
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-447ISBN: 91-7323-129-0 (print)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kth-447DiVA: diva2:12411
Presentation
2005-10-14, Sal L52, Drottning Kristinas väg 30, Stockholm, 13:00
Opponent
Supervisors
Note
QC 20101217Available from: 2005-10-14 Created: 2005-10-14 Last updated: 2011-01-03Bibliographically approved
List of papers
1. MAMMUT – Managing the Metabolism of Urbanization: Testing Theory through a Pilot Study of the Stockholm Underground
Open this publication in new window or tab >>MAMMUT – Managing the Metabolism of Urbanization: Testing Theory through a Pilot Study of the Stockholm Underground
2006 (English)In: Sustainable Development, ISSN 0968-0802, E-ISSN 1099-1719, Vol. 14, no 5, 312-326 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The research project MAMMUT explores synergies between the processes of urbanization and sustainable development. In a pilot study, we tested the assumption that the concept of situations of opportunity can define the project's unit of analysis. We applied MAMMUT's conceptual framework to the Stockholm Underground, identified that situation's formative moment (1941, when main decisions were taken) and analysed its prehistory and factual outcome. To illustrate its field of options, a counterfactual highway and roads scenario was developed. For outcome and scenario, we outlined the resulting urban structure, the institutions of development and operation and the households' ways of life, and assessed environmental impacts. The situation concept was found to be useful for identifying and analysing synergies between urbanization and sustainable development. It needs to be further developed to study the relationships between its four disciplinary aspects. Applying it to futurological studies calls for methodological development including scenario techniques and backcasting.

Keyword
urbanization, management, situations of opportunity, methodology development, Stockholm, Underground
National Category
Civil Engineering
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-7393 (URN)10.1002/sd.289 (DOI)000243016500003 ()2-s2.0-33845770349 (Scopus ID)
Note
QC 20100921. Uppdaterad från Accepted till Published (20100921).Available from: 2005-10-14 Created: 2005-10-14 Last updated: 2011-10-19Bibliographically approved
2. Daladala Buses Deregulated - Analysing Urbanization's Situations of Oppotunity via Tanzanian Example
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Daladala Buses Deregulated - Analysing Urbanization's Situations of Oppotunity via Tanzanian Example
2008 (English)In: International Journal of Sustainable Development and Planning, ISSN 1743-7601, Vol. 3, no 1, 16-28 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

In the development and growth of cities, certain stages or segments in time are considered more important than the others. Analysts have identifi ed these points in time as ‘formative moments’, ‘policy windows’ or ‘situations of opportunity’, and argue that they present policy makers and stakeholders with a unique opportunity to implement change. Thus, in an ongoing project, Managing the Metabolism of Urbanisation (MAMMUT), we need methods for identifying and analysing this kind of situations in historical processes as well as in backcasting from future scenarios. When did these situations open up and what did they consist of? Was the process intentional, accidental or even the effect of an evolutionary process? Furthermore, which was, in terms of the MAMMUT project, the ‘fi eld of options’ available to the stakeholders? (in historical situations, we can identify counterfactual alternatives though they were not elaborate or even considered at that time). From political scientist Rothstein we get the means for identifying formative moments in institutional processes of decision-making. Elinor Ostrom supplies theory that should facilitate the analysis of situations of opportunity. In order to test the feasibility of these methods in the project, we related them to fi ndings from an empirical pilot study on the city of Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. In the pilot study, the situation of opportunity is the deregulation and privatisation of the Daladala local bus transport system from the 1970s. The pilot study indicates that this turnover indeed was a formative moment or a situation of opportunity, albeit a missed one. Furthermore, these methods could also be used for analysis, at least of the institutional aspect of the situation. The social and urban structural aspects as well as the assessment of the outcome in terms of environmental impacts call for a wider set of methodologies.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
WIT Press, 2008
Keyword
Dar es Salaam, field of options, formative moment, methods development, public transport, situation of opportunity, sustainable urbanisation
National Category
Civil Engineering
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-27618 (URN)10.2495/SDP-V3-N1-16-28 (DOI)2-s2.0-51149122337 (Scopus ID)
Note
QC 20101216Available from: 2010-12-16 Created: 2010-12-16 Last updated: 2010-12-17Bibliographically approved
3. Developing Methods for Analysis of Public Transport Systems to Promote Environmentally Sustainable Urban Development: – Learning from Historical Situations of Opportunity in Curitiba and Stockholm
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Developing Methods for Analysis of Public Transport Systems to Promote Environmentally Sustainable Urban Development: – Learning from Historical Situations of Opportunity in Curitiba and Stockholm
2005 (English)In: European Network for Housing Research Conference (ENHR), Reykjavik 29 June - 02 July 2005, 2005Conference paper, Published paper (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

Urbanisation takes place when people move to cities – resulting in the need for new buildings and infrasystems, new institutions, and often a new way of life. How does this relate to the sustainability challenge? If migration is unavoidable, urbanisation may hold opportunities for addressing the long-term objectives of sustainable development.This paper explores a historical situation of opportunity, which refers to moments when stakeholders had a possibility greater than average to influence the urbanization process to contribute to sustainable development. The public transport system developed in Curitiba, Brazil during the 70’s is studied as such a situation. It had a prehistory restricting the field of options available to stakeholders, and the choice eventually made in that formative moment influenced the city’s future development, affecting its urban structure, institutional setup and people’s ways of life. The same research strategy used for the analysis of Curitiba’s bus system is also applied to the public transport system of Stockholm: underground plus trams and buses. The study of these two contrasting pilot studies is used as means for testing and further developing the methodological and conceptual framework of the MAMMUT research programme. The two transport systems are compared to illustrate the extent to which - guided by objectives of sustainability - the urbanization process can be managed. Additionally, methods to assess the metabolism of urbanization are explored and tested through a simplified analysis of the energy use for operating the transport systems in both cities, and thus indicating environmental impacts.

Keyword
situation of opportunity, urbanization, public transport, method development, energy use, Curitiba, Stockholm.
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-27621 (URN)
Projects
MAMMUT - Managing the Metabolism of Urbanization
Note
QC 20101216Available from: 2010-12-16 Created: 2010-12-16 Last updated: 2010-12-17Bibliographically approved

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