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Of Plants, High Lines and Horses: Civics and Designers in the Relational Articulation of Values of Urban Natures
KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Architecture.
Philosophy and History, KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Philosophy and History of Technology, History of Science, Technology and Environment. University of Cape Town. (KTH Environmental Humanities Laboratory)ORCID iD: 0000-0002-6415-4821
2017 (English)In: Landscape and Urban Planning, ISSN 0169-2046, E-ISSN 1872-6062, Vol. 157, 309-321 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

This paper addresses three interventions into urban green spaces—a wetland in Cape Town, a post- industrial site in New York, and a park outside London. Through their different contexts, they help to grasp a wider phenomenon: the protection of urban nature through the development of protective narratives. We analyze these interventions as examples of “value articulation”, which we view as a relational and sociomaterial practice that requires the enrolment of people, plants, and things that together perform, spread, and deploy stories about why given places need protection. For each case study, we also highlight the moments when narrative practices move beyond mere protection and start to change the very context in which they were developed. We refer to these as projective narratives, emphasizing how novel values and uses are projected onto these spaces, opening them up for reworking. Our analyses of these successful attempts to protect land demonstrate how values emerge as part of inclusive, yet specific, narratives that mobilize and broaden support and constituencies. By constructing spatial linkages, such narratives embed places in wider geographical ‘wholes’ and we observe how the physical landscape itself becomes an active narrative element. In contrast to rationalist and external frameworks for analyzing values in relation to urban natures (e.g., ecosystem services), our ‘bottom-up’ mode situates urban nature in specific contexts, helping us to profoundly rethink planning and practice in order to (i) challenge expert categories and city/nature dichotomies; (ii) provide vernacular ways of knowing/understanding; and (iii) rethink the role of urban designers.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Elsevier, 2017. Vol. 157, 309-321 p.
National Category
Human Geography
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-192256DOI: 10.1016/j.landurbplan.2016.05.018ISI: 000390183300029Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-84982273772OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kth-192256DiVA: diva2:967366
Projects
MOVE Socioecological movements in urbanised ecosystems
Funder
Swedish Research Council for Environment, Agricultural Sciences and Spatial Planning, 211-2011-1519
Note

QC 20160908

Available from: 2016-09-08 Created: 2016-09-08 Last updated: 2017-11-21Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Projecting Urban Natures: Investigating integrative approaches to urban development and nature conservation
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Projecting Urban Natures: Investigating integrative approaches to urban development and nature conservation
2017 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Projecting Urban Natures is a compilation thesis in critical studies in architecture. It comprises three journal articles and four design proposals in which I have taken an active part. The point of departure for this thesis is the renewed emphasis on social-ecological interaction and resilience that is currently taking place within ecological systems science, and the opportunities that these paradigmatic insights in turn have opened up within urbanism and design. The thesis argues that although they are promising, these emerging integrative frameworks are seldom brought into mainstream planning and urban design practice. Instead, the structuring of “nature” and “city” into a dualistic balance relationship still permeates not only the general planning discourse, but also makes its way into planning documents, notably influencing distinctions between professions. In response, this thesis sets out to rethink and explore more integrated approaches to human/nature relationships, through the utilization of design-based and transdisciplinary research methods. While this core aim of the thesis remains the same throughout the work, the task is approached from different perspectives: through different constellations of collaborative work as well as through parallel case-based explorations that emphasize the relational, anti-essentialist and situated articulation of values of urban natures and how these forces come into play. The work has been propelled through workshop-based, site-specific, and experimental design processes with professionals and researchers from the fields of e.g. systems ecology, natural resource management, political ecology, urban design, architecture, and landscape design, as well as planners, developers, local interest groups, and NGOs. Specifically, projects performed within this thesis include: Nature as an Infrastructural Potential – An Urban Strategy for Järvafältet; Kymlinge UrbanNatur together with NOD, Wingårdhs, MUST and Storylab; Årsta Urban Natures with James Corner Field Operations and Buro Happold; and Albano Resilient Campus — a collaboration between Stockholm Resilience Centre, KTH and KIT.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
KTH Royal Institute of Technology, 2017
Series
TRITA-ARK. Akademisk avhandling, ISSN 1402-7461 ; 17:03
Keyword
research through design; interdisciplinary; transdisciplinary; resilience, legibility; landscape urbanism; ecological urbanism; Stockholm; Green Wedges; projective narratives; comprehensive narratives; prototyping; ecosystem services; urban nature conservation
National Category
Architecture
Research subject
Architecture
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-217153 (URN)9789177295518 (ISBN)
Public defence
2017-12-01, F3, Lindstedtsvägen 26, Stockholm, 13:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Note

QC 20171102

Available from: 2017-11-07 Created: 2017-11-01 Last updated: 2017-11-08Bibliographically approved

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Ernstson, Henrik

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