Overcoming environmental challenges
With cities and urban regions being the locus of global socio-environmental challenges as well as hubs of transformative innovations, it is crucial to understand how marginalised citizens, local communities, civil society organisations, academic researchers, and governmental agencies engage in collaborative experimentations to reshape the urban environment and address the issue of inequality and its links with democracy.
Three main urban situations of entrenched inequalities will be covered by the project:
01 — the unequal environmental impact of the climate crisis on urban and peri-urban contexts, ranging from issues of water and sanitation access and urban heating to the environmental deterioration linked to waste and embedded pollutions and the unequal distribution of costs and benefits in urban ecological transformations;
02 — the unequal processes and outcomes underpinning the regeneration and renewal of public (and semi-public) housing estates, and informal settlements, many of which entail the significant displacement of existing communities (Alexandrescu et al. 2021; Lees et al., 2016; Johnson et al., 2021; Watt, 2021).
03 — then a third type of inequality relates to risks and vulnerabilities associated with climate change impacts (IPCC, 2022, Leclercq, 2021) and flooding-risk participatory governance (Mees et al. 2018). This is the case of various urban settings expressing environmental distress or concerns, especially linking water/flooding issues and quality of housing/environment (Bulkeley and Tuts, 2013; Samoli et al., 2019).
Our project aims to develop alternative modes of governance by developing strategies, policies and action plans for tackling inequalities via the inclusion of marginalised groups in participatory processes of urban co-production.