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Contested Greenspace Solidarities?

Asymmetric Valuation Compromises and Civic-Material Tensions in Copenhagen Allotment Gardens

Nicola C. Thomas and Anders Blok

Urban allotment gardens constitute urban natures with a rich history as well as potential public redevelopment land. While many cities in Europe struggle to protect allotment gardens from competing land-use forces, in Copenhagen, allotments are classified as valuable urban nature and enjoy special protection. We analyze the social and political conditions and consequences of this unique situation. Taking a closer look at the governance arrangements and what we refer to as asymmetric civic-public compromises enabling the protection, we show how this is resulting in new material conflicts between civic and municipal actors. We argue that the conflicts are related to the unresolved issue of competing visions of civic, green, and market sustainability shaping contemporary urban development in Copenhagen and beyond and which are starkly revealed within allotment gardens.

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Daoist Political Ecology as Green Party Ideology

The Case of the Swedish Greens

Devin K. Joshi

Green parties were once hailed as offering a “new politics” vis-à-vis the political establishment by proposing radical political, economic, and environmental reforms, but they have since transformed in many countries to become more moderate and pragmatic. While some doubt whether their ideology still contains any essential core, I contend that a unifying link can be found in the philosophy of the Daoist sage Laozi. I illustrate this by analyzing the party program of Miljöpartiet de Gröna (Sweden’s Environmental Green Party), one of the world’s most electorally successful green parties. As demonstrated here, this green party’s current ideology strongly reflects key imperatives of Daoist political ecology revealing the philosophy’s durability and attractiveness over time and its perceived relevance to pressing issues of sustainability and climate change.

Open access

Adriano Franco Reyes

Abstract: This article explores the relationship between a specific political economy and its developmental impacts by analyzing how the Zona Bananera in the north of the Department of Magdalena, Colombia, was configured by the emergence of an agro-exportation model between 1850 and 1930. The review of gubernatorial reports and statistical data highlights how the development deriving from this model concentrated benefits to a small landowning class, which magnified the unequal distribution of land in the area. Therefore, this article documents the negative social consequences deriving from this type of development, particularly in frontier societies like the one in Magdalena at the end of the 19th century and beginning of the 20th century.

Resumen: El artículo explora la relación entre una economía política particular y sus efectos en términos de desarrollo a través del análisis de la configuración de la Zona Bananera en el departamento del Magdalena, Colombia, a partir del surgimiento de una economía política que definió para este un modelo agroexportador en el periodo de 1850 a 1930. La revisión de informes de gobernadores del Magdalena, en conjunto con datos estadísticos resalta cómo el desarrollo derivado de este modelo concentró beneficios en una pequeña clase terrateniente, magnificando la distribución desigual de la tierra. Por lo tanto, este artículo documenta las consecuencias sociales negativas de este tipo de desarrollo, particularmente en sociedades de frontera, como la del Magdalena a finales del XIX principios del XX.

Résumé : Cet article explore les effets d’une économie politique particulière en termes de développement, dans le nord du département du Magdalena, en Colombie, configuré à partir de l’émergence d’un modèle agricole exportateur de 1850 à 1930. L’analyse des rapports rédigés par les gouverneurs du département, ainsi que des données statistiques, montrent comment le modèle concentra des bénéfices en faveur de quelques familles de propriétaires fonciers, et accentua l’inégale répartition des terres. Ainsi, l’article met en évidence les conséquences sociales négatives de ce modèle de développement dans les sociétés de frontière, à la fin du XIXe siècle et au début du XXe siècle.

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Glaciers in the Anthropocene

A Biocultural View

Daniel Gaudio and Mauro Gobbi

Disappearing glaciers are one of the most evident signals of climate change of the current period in Earth’s history, the Anthropocene. In this article, we discuss the side effects of the glacier melt from a biocultural standpoint, moving from the Southern European Alps to a global context. Specifically, we highlight what we are losing from a cultural and naturalistic perspective but also, paradoxically, what we could “gain” if we were able to understand more deeply, and with an interdisciplinary approach, glacial dynamics and their role for human society. Glaciers can teach us several stories, but we are quickly approaching the last chance to listen to them.

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Harlan Koff, Carmen Maganda, Edith Kauffer, Julia Ros Cuellar, and Citlalli Alhelí González Hernández

Since 2020, the editorial team at Regions & Cohesion has engaged these editors’ notes as a way to highlight the relevance of the socio-economic research published in the journal for our understanding of current events. We have specifically embraced discussions on the COVID-19 pandemic from the point of view of the social construction of vulnerability and risk. Our editors’ notes have focused on the relationship between development strategies and the health and economic impacts of the pandemic, and we have contextualized these discussions by focusing on global inequalities and their local manifestations. Like many people, our fear has been (and continues to be) that a “return to normal” represents a return to unsustainable development and inequity.

Open access

Felipe Covarrubias Melgar, América Libertad Rodríguez Herrera, Erick Alfonso Galán Castro, Manuel I. Ruz Vargas, and Maximino Reyes Umaña

Abstract: Acapulco is an influential development pole in the territorial dynamics of the State of Guerrero; therefore, the study of its urban planning is relevant from the perspective of democratic governance and related political processes at the regional level. We analyze the discourse of the citizen participation workshops of the 2015 urban planning process, where an ideal of a tourist city without environmental vision prevailed, a participation exercise carried out only to legitimize the planning process without achieving it. We showed that the auxiliary planning bodies fail to build consensus, the presence of an influential group of technicians, and the null representativeness of vulnerable groups. It is necessary that an inclusive city and the collective interest be claimed from civil society.

Resumen: Acapulco es un polo de desarrollo influyente en las dinámicas territoriales del estado de Guerrero, por ende, el estudio de su planeación urbana es relevante desde la perspectiva de gobernanza democrática y de los procesos políticos relacionados con ésta en el ámbito regional. Analizamos el discurso de los talleres de participación ciudadana del proceso de planeación urbana de 2015, donde en el cual prevaleció un ideal de ciudad turística sin visión ambiental, un ejercicio de participación realizado únicamente para legitimar el proceso de planeación sin lograrlo. Mostramos que los organismos auxiliares de planeación no logran construir consensos, debido a la presencia de un grupo de técnicos influyente y a la nula representatividad de grupos vulnerables. Es necesario que una ciudad inclusiva y el interés colectivo sean reclamados desde la sociedad civil.

Résumé : Acapulco est un pôle de développement influent dans la dynamique territoriale de l’état du Guerrero. Par conséquent, l’étude de sa planification urbaine est pertinente pour la perspective de la gouvernance démocratique et des processus politiques connexes régionaux. Nous analysons le discours des ateliers de participation citoyenne du processus de planification urbaine de 2015, au cours desquels a prévalu un idéal de ville touristique sans vision environnementale : il s’agit alors d’un exercice de participation réalisé uniquement pour légitimer le processus de planification, sans résultat concret. Nous avons montré que les organes auxiliaires de planification ne parviennent pas à construire un consensus, en raison de la présence d’un groupe influent de techniciens et d’une représentativité nulle des groupes vulnérables. La ville inclusive et l’intérêt collectif doivent être revendiqués par la société civile.

Open access

Irvin Evany Aguilar León

Abstract: The 2030 Agenda, established seven years ago, still has not being implemented by most of the signed countries. Due to its breadth, implementation becomes a complex process since it is necessary to find coherence with national policies. Of the 17 SDGs, the UN declared that SDG-7, referring to affordable and clean energy, is central. For countries dependent on fossil fuels or without technology to take advantage of renewable sources, the application of SDG-7 to their energy policies is posing challenges. This article analyzes the normative coherence in Mexico of the SDG-7 goals regarding their progress and the energy and development policy during the 2015–2022 period as a representative case for the theoretical and empirical discussion on the energy-development relationship.

Resumen: La Agenda 2030, establecida hace siete años, todavía no ha sido implementada por la mayoría de los países firmantes. Debido a su amplitud, la implementación se convierte en un proceso complejo, ya que se requiere encontrar la coherencia con políticas nacionales. De los 17 ODS, la ONU declaró que el ODS-7, referente a energía asequible y no contaminante, es central. Para países dependientes a energéticos fósiles o sin tecnología para aprovechar fuentes renovables, la aplicación del ODS-7 a sus políticas energéticas está suponiendo desafíos. El presente artículo analiza la coherencia normativa en México de las metas del ODS-7 respecto a su avance y la política de seguridad energética y desarrollo durante el periodo 2015–2022 como un caso representativo para la discusión teórica y empírica sobre la relación energía-desarrollo.

Résumé : L’Agenda 2030, établi il y a sept ans, n’a pas encore été mis en œuvre par la plupart des pays signataires. En raison de son ampleur, la mise en œuvre devient un processus complexe, car il est nécessaire de trouver une cohérence avec les politiques nationales. Parmi les 17 ODD, l’ONU a déclaré que l’ODD-7, qui fait référence à une énergie abordable et propre, est central. Pour les pays dépendants des combustibles fossiles ou sans technologie susceptible de tirer parti des sources renouvelables, l’application de l’ODD-7 à leurs politiques énergétiques pose des défis. Cet article analyse la cohérence normative des objectifs de l’ODD-7 concernant leur progression et la politique énergétique et de développement au cours de la période 2015-2022 au Mexique comme un cas représentatif de la discussion théorique et empirique sur la relation énergie-développement.

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The OECD Water Governance Principles in Flood Risk Management

Understanding Conflicts and Frictions in Dutch Flood Protection

Nadine Keller, Barbara Tempels, and Thomas Hartmann

The OECD Water Governance Principles provide a guideline for good water governance. However, these principles can conflict with each other when applied in practice. This contribution aims to understand which dilemmas arise and how such conflicts play out. It is explored in an in-depth case study on Dutch flood risk management in which conflicts between the principles emerge when applied to flood risk management practice. Interviews with water managers were used to collect data on which principles contradict each other and how these conflicts work out in practice. The study reveals that although the principles seem obvious, some principles indeed clash when applying them, while others do not lead to conflicts. Principles on efficiency, trust, and engagement have high potential for conflicts.

Open access

Juan Carlos Cayo, Ingol Gentes, Pablo Policzer, and Ana Watson

Durante las últimas cuatro décadas, buena parte del desarrollo económico en América Latina ha girado en torno a la industria extractiva bajo un marco regulatorio neoliberal. Este modelo ha provocado protestas e incluso, en algunos casos, procesos constituyentes emergentes. En este contexto, reflexionamos por qué el marco neoliberal para el ordenamiento territorial sigue ocasionando resistencia a pesar de sus cambios y promesas. El neoliberalismo originalmente surgió a mediados del siglo anterior como una manera menos conflictiva, más tecnocrática, de tomar decisiones fundamentales en la economía y la política ambiental. En este artículo nos enfocamos en dos casos emblemáticos de oposición en Perú y Chile donde las poblaciones locales lograron imponer su mirada ante la del Estado.

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Scaling Back and Fitting In

Envisioning the Futures of Environmental Cultures

Christian Diehm

Devall, Bill. 2020. Living Deep Ecology: A Bioregional Journey. Lanham, MD: Lexington Books.

Kallis, Giorgos, Susan Paulson, Giacomo D’Alisa, and Federico Demaria. 2020. The Case for Degrowth. Medford: Polity.