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    ABSTRACT: In order to achieve outdoor thermal comfort it is necessary to understand the interactions between the prevailing climate, the urban form and roughness. The near surface boundary layer is directly influenced by local irradiative and convective exchange processes due to the presence of a variety of different surfaces, sheltering elements and obstacles to air flow leading to distinctive micro-scale climates. The paper presents a micro-scale numerical model for an outdoor urban form for a hot summer’s day in Al-Muizz street located at the Islamic quarter of Cairo, where a few studies have attempted to study these conditions in vernacular settings in hot arid areas where the continuously evolving urban patterns and shaded environments were perceived to produce more pedestrian friendly outdoor environments. In situ measurements are used to validate the ENVI-met results which showed an overall agreement with the observed ones, representing adequate mean radiant temperature (Tmrt) which is one of the most important meteorological parameters governing human energy balance and has therefore a strong influence on thermal sensation of the pedestrians using the open public spaces and generating a micro-climatic map as an initial step in addressing the urgent need for a modelling platform accessible to urban designers, architects, and decision makers towards sustainable urban forms.
    HBRC Journal. 01/2014;
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    ABSTRACT: With a focus on the residential sector, this paper explores the likelihood of the UK government meeting its energy targets. The paper contends that energy policy needs to take into account the interplay of four major factors: an ageing population of increasing diversity; a cultural inclination for older housing much of which is thermally inefficient; levels of fuel poverty; and the inexorable rise of consumer spending on leisure related services and goods. Decisions made by older households (both the poorer and the better off) may be critical to the success of energy policy. Among the better off the changing expectations of the baby boomers, with their predilection for consumption and travel, may have particular impact. The paper concludes that much of the reduction in carbon footprint made by older people's choices in heating and insulation may be offset, not only by increasing domestic thermal comfort, but also potentially by increasing consumables in the home and other consumer lifestyle choices. What could be achieved at best, may be a shift in energy mix.
    Energy Policy. 02/2011; 39(2):782-789.
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    ABSTRACT: This paper examines how complex transport projects are reported in the media using the Transport Innovation Fund bid for Greater Manchester as a case study. It demonstrates how projects are simplified and distorted in the media in a systematic way. Such distortion is explained by a scheme's perceived newsworthiness, its complexity and the contemporary nature of news media production. The paper has implications for future research in this area and the implementation of sustainable transport policy. It urges transport professionals to both better understand, and engage directly with, the media if they are to maximise the benefits of efforts to shape travel behaviour.
    Transport Policy. 01/2011; 18(2):468-479.
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    ABSTRACT: Tehran after the Second World War experienced a modernization drive and rapid population growth. In 1972, the Greek planner, Constantinos Doxiadis, who had already undertaken major housing and planning projects in Iran, was invited to prepare an action plan for the city, to guide the future investment for easing the city's problems. Doxiadis saw cities as nightmares, but advocated that a holistic scientific analysis and a naturalist approach to urban growth management could address their problems. In applying his ideas to Tehran, however, the limits of his ideas of scientific planning became evident, not only through contextual pressures, such as lack of time and data, but also through the planning consultant's approach, in which commercial considerations and the application of readymade solutions could shape the outcome. Rather than working with the context, Doxiadis followed the modernist tenet of breaking with the past, proposing the creation of West Tehran, an alternative to the city where all future growth should take place on a utopian basis. The radical nature of his proposals, his death, and a turbulent revolution aborted the impact of his action plan on Tehran, while faith in modernist scientific planning was widely being abandoned.
    Planning Perspectives 01/2010; 25(4):485-504.
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    ABSTRACT: This paper presents results of an international comparative research project, funded by the UK Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) and the Academy for Sustainable Communities (ASC) on the ‘learning potential of appraisal (strategic environmental assessment — SEA) in spatial planning’. In this context, aspects of ‘single-loop’ and ‘double-loop’ learning, as well as of individual, organisational and social learning are discussed for emerging post-EC Directive German practice in the planning region (Zweckverband) of Brunswick (Braunschweig), focusing on four spatial plan SEAs from various administrative levels in the region. It is found that whilst SEA is able to lead to plan SEA specific knowledge acquisition, comprehension, application and analysis (‘single-loop learning’), it is currently resulting only occasionally in wider synthesis and evaluation (‘double-loop learning’). Furthermore, whilst there is evidence that individual and occasionally organisational learning may be enhanced through SEA, most notably in small municipalities, social learning appears to be happening only sporadically.
    Environmental Impact Assessment Review 11/2009;
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    ABSTRACT: Purpose – Faced with an increasingly open society, retail concentration and population change, the purpose of this paper is to consider the challenges and potential for small towns to compete for custom from their residents. Design/methodology/approach – Retail challenges and potential are considered through exploring the attitudes and behaviour of residents in a range of towns, where the key factors affecting trade are identified using regression analysis and then explored further using more open-ended approaches. Findings – The resident surveys illustrate a sizeable leakage of retail expenditure out of the towns, particularly for comparison goods. Regression analysis shows that this leakage is more part of a general trend rather than being associated with high levels of migration into the towns. Residents seem to fit into two different groupings: first, those whose expectations can be met at the small town level; and second, those wanting a different offer and tending to go elsewhere. Encouraging trade from the former provides the most realistic policy objective. Practical implications – Key issues relate to getting the basics right, providing support to independent/specialist shops, encouraging firms to fill missing key elements of the retail offer and, where population change is occurring, ensuring that the expansion of services does not have detrimental effects for town centres. Originality/value – This paper illustrates that although there are many retail challenges-facing small towns, there is potential for them to maintain their viability and vitality.
    International Journal of Retail &amp Distribution Management 07/2009; 37(9).
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    ABSTRACT: This paper discusses the consumption of the everyday services that sustain living in contemporary Britain, many of which are now provided by private sector organizations operating in the global marketplace. It aims to highlight the differential access to and cost of those services to people living stressed and disadvantaged lives in marginalized neighbourhoods. Drawing on recent empirical research, it highlights the way in which the exclusion and marginalization of some customers exacerbates both their financial poverty and the stress associated with it.
    International IJC 07/2008; 24(1):49 - 59.
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    ABSTRACT: This article details the application of the economic valuation technique, Choice Experiment (CE), to an archaeological site to investigate and estimate the value visitors place on various attributes of the site. A questionnaire requiring visitors to make choices between scenarios containing various pre-determined options for the management and content of the site was administered. This allowed the tradeoffs respondents were prepared to make between different options for the management of the site to be observed, and subsequently the utility visitors derived from these different elements to be estimated. The results show that CE can be used to obtain estimates for visitor utility for various options of the management of the site. The methodology thus has a potential use in the management of archaeological and heritage sites.
    Journal of Cultural Heritage - J CULT HERIT. 01/2008; 9(2):117-124.
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    ABSTRACT: This paper begins by reviewing several of the ways in which social inclusion has been conceptualized in the literature. The paper then explores these approaches in the context of the provision of preschool education in rural Scotland. Preschool education is viewed by government as a powerful weapon in the fight against social exclusion, but higher per capita costs in rural areas as well as the availability and cost of transport are major problems, raising questions in turn about inclusive models of provision. Moreover, many parents are sceptical about their ability to access preschool education for their children while also continuing their own engagement in the labour market (a central pillar of social inclusion policy). Issues of choice, quality and governance arise and these are discussed in depth. The paper concludes with some reflections on the concept of social inclusion in the light of this case study.
    Social Policy & Administration 11/2006; 40(6):678 - 691.
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    ABSTRACT: The paper focuses on the privatization of public rental housing in Kolkata. The State government has decided to sell to its sitting tenants, due to high maintenance costs and loopholes in the rent setting and allocation processes. The success of privatization of public housing in Kolkata is contingent upon the government’s capacity to turn its liabilities into assets for the future, fending off possible negative externalities of privatization on the low income households that constitute the majority population in the city. The paper suggests that considerable benefits can be accrued from the privatization and concludes with two possible alternatives, within a conducive liberalized environment. The alternatives are not conclusive, but designed to promote alternatives in future research.
    Cities. 01/2006;
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