Niki Frantzeskaki

Niki Frantzeskaki
Utrecht University | UU · Department of Human Geography and Spatial Planning

PhD

About

193
Publications
136,644
Reads
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10,996
Citations
Additional affiliations
March 2019 - present
Swinburne University of Technology
Position
  • Professor (Full)
April 2010 - February 2019
Erasmus University Rotterdam
Position
  • Professor (Associate)
October 2005 - April 2010
Delft University of Technology
Position
  • PhD Student

Publications

Publications (193)
Article
Full-text available
As rates of urbanization and climatic change soar, decision-makers are increasingly challenged to provide innovative solutions that simultaneously address climate-change impacts and risks and inclusively ensure quality of life for urban residents. Cities have turned to nature-based solutions to help address these challenges. Nature-based solutions,...
Article
Full-text available
Purpose The “tourism living systems” (Tourism Living System – TLS) concept is underdeveloped, with limited relevant theoretical analysis to understand how it can support the transformations of tourism systems towards healthy communities and places. This paper aims to conceptualise TLSs and key stakeholder roles for enacting regenerative tourism usi...
Article
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Australia is experiencing mounting pressures related to processes of urbanisation, biodiversity loss and climate change felt at large in cities. At the same time, it is cities that can take the leading role in pioneering approaches and solutions to respond to those coupling emergencies. In this perspective piece we respond to the following question...
Article
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Nature-based solutions (NBS) were introduced as integrated, multifunctional and multi-beneficial solutions to a wide array of socio-ecological challenges. Although principles for a common understanding and implementation of NBS were already developed on a landscape scale, specific principles are needed with regard to an application in urban areas....
Article
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Cities are open to trialing new approaches for advancing their planning and urban governance practice. Evidence from urban research and practice shows that transition management has been widely and diversely applied for strategic planning for climate mitigation and adaptation, regeneration, as well as sectoral (energy, water, waste) and social cohe...
Chapter
This chapter explains the importance for nature-based solutions as resilience infrastructure of cities. It sets the scene for the challenges and opportunities presented by a city-wide uptake and implementation of nature-based solutions as integrative and systemic solutions to planning for urban resilience and sustainability. We present not only the...
Article
Cities can set in motion sustainability transitions through experimentation and innovation. To invest in and mainstream solutions that contribute to urban transformation agendas, urban planners needs to understand which innovations have transformational potential as well as how these innovations can accelerate sustainability transitions. In order t...
Article
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Examining justice in cities requires using analytical approaches that can unpack their complex nature and reveal the many interacting dimensions that affect justice patterns and processes. Although justice in cities has been examined extensively, it has primarily focused on social and environmental dimensions. However, justice is multi-dimensional,...
Article
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Urban transitions and transformations research fosters a dialogue between sustainability transitions theory an inter- and transdisciplinary research on urban change. As a field, urban transitions and transformations research encompasses plural analytical and conceptual perspectives. In doing so, this field opens up sustainability transitions resear...
Article
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Global urbanization over the last century has concentrated people, infrastructure, and economic activity in cities, pushing them to the front lines of damaging impacts of climate change and other social and economic shocks, including COVID-19. Cities are already vulnerable to such extremes and may become the most severely threatened global location...
Article
As cities increasingly turn to nature-based solutions to address key urban socio-ecological challenges, approaches to their governance, planning and implementation are increasingly important for ensuring their effectiveness. Nature-based solutions are multifunctional, and so their planning and implementation are by necessity interdisciplinary. As s...
Article
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Record climate extremes are reducing urban liveability, compounding inequality, and threatening infrastructure. Adaptation measures that integrate technological, nature-based, and social solutions can provide multiple co-benefits to address complex socioecological issues in cities while increasing resilience to potential impacts. However, there rem...
Article
In the post-pandemic era, we must value our cities as cultural and economic centres, that are socially and environmentally diverse. This requires a transformation in the way we plan and govern our cities, but what can be learnt from the current crisis about how cities should be managed? In this article, we report on a scoping review to help identif...
Article
Australian cities offer potential for public health impact through low-carbon built environment design interventions, given their high per capita carbon footprint and with car use being a large proportion of transport mode share. Certain neighbourhood built environment features have been shown to influence uptake of active travel (walking and cycli...
Article
Social-ecological justice is an emerging field that argues for nature’s agency, social-ecological awareness, recognition of nature’s capabilities, and participation in decision-making processes. A social-ecological justice perspective lifts the analysis out of a distribution of environmental impacts to humans, to a recognition of social-ecological...
Article
Planning for and implementing multifunctional nature-based solutions can improve urban ecosystems’ adaptation to climate change, foster urban resilience, and enable social and environmental innovation. There is, however, a knowledge gap in how to design and plan nature-based solutions in a nonanthropocentric manner that enhances co-benefits for hum...
Article
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Urban social–ecological–technological systems (SETS) are dynamic and respond to climate pressures. Change involves alterations to land and resource management, social organization, infrastructure, and design. Research often focuses on how climate change impacts urban SETS or on the characteristics of urban SETS that promote climate resilience. Yet...
Article
In this perspective, we present how three initial landmark papers on urban sustainability research contributed to the larger sustainability science scholarship and paved the way for the continued development of urban sustainability research. Based on this, we propose three conceptual innovation pathways to trace the progression of urban sustainabil...
Article
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Cities globally are greening their urban fabric, but to contribute positively to the biodiversity extinction crisis, local governments must explicitly target actions for biodiversity. We apply the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES) framework — nature for nature, society and culture — to elevate...
Article
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The narrative of ‘urban transformations’ epitomises the hope that cities provide rich opportunities for contributing to local and global sustainability and resilience. Urban transformation research is developing a rich yet consistent research agenda, offering opportunities for integrating multiple perspectives and disciplines concerned with radical...
Conference Paper
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Tourism which seeks to regenerate communities and places, calls for roles that serve living systems. This paper aims to conceptualise the different roles of key stakeholders to enact regenerative tourism in destinations. Findings shared are derived from a scoping review study that sought to investigate what is known about the concept of regenerativ...
Article
Australia is currently grappling with a range of social and environmental challenges, many of which impact the way our public health system, and society more broadly, function. In this short communication paper we explore urban agriculture in Australia as a Nature-Based Solution (NBS) to address some of the ecological, social, economic and health c...
Article
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Transformative changes are required for a 21st century sustainable urban development transition involving multiple interconnected domains of energy, water, transport, waste, and housing. This will necessitate a step change in performance goals and tangible solutions. Regenerative urban development has emerged as a major pathway, together with decar...
Article
Cities all over the world are confronting intertwined environmental, social and economic problems and aim to become resilient to climate change and promote wellbeing for all their citizens. Nature-based solutions have been proposed as a promising policy approach to addressing urban problems for the potential they have to deliver multiple benefits a...
Chapter
With growing awareness of the adverse impacts of anthropogenic climate change, it is essential to understand whether and how societal transformation can be achieved. Future society’s ability to transform depends on how human agency can develop within evolving socioeconomic contexts. Scenarios, therefore, provide different enabling conditions and ch...
Chapter
In this chapter, we systematically review our knowledge about climate governance capacities, capacity gaps, lock-ins and opportunities, and link this to the state-of-the art of climate science and climate governance. We formulate a forward-looking research agenda that signposts key themes to advance the transformation of climate governance. The res...
Chapter
This chapter introduces the robust transition pathways developed in four case studies at different scales in Europe and analyses what capacities they create. Implementing transition pathways to respond to high-end scenarios and contribute to sustainability and resilience transformations requires new agency capacities that are able to deal with comp...
Chapter
The reality of water-related challenges has led to calls to adapt urban water governance to integrated, inclusive and adaptive approaches that facilitate learning and innovation for sustainable and resilient cities. However, there is a gap in knowledge about the conditions that manifest in such water governance, and how to create such conditions to...
Chapter
Significant changes of climate governance have to accompany, or, even precede effective climate action. We introduce our transformative perspective on climate change as a new entry point to understand and formulate implications for climate governance, to underscore the transformative role and transformative impact of governance in dealing with driv...
Chapter
The scale of cities has become an epicentre of scientific and policy attention for tackling climate change and sustainability challenges. Local governments worldwide have already demonstrated how to harness opportunities for developing innovative and integrated solutions to better tend to the systemic and uncertain nature of urban transformations....
Chapter
This chapter presents the case study of how transformative climate governance capacities emerge in New York City. NYC represents a highly complex governance setting with multiple agencies, actors and jurisdictions involved in the development and implementation of climate policy and projects. Over the past years, NYC has substantially innovated its...
Chapter
Transition management has been applied in different governance contexts over the past 15 years, showing its modularity and also its ability to facilitate participatory strategic planning and agenda setting. This book chapter presents the operational framework of transition management as developed to guide the design of a three-series workshop in fo...
Chapter
Full-text available
This Handbook shows the enormous impetus given to the scientific debate by linking planning as a science of purposeful interventions and complexity as a science of spontaneous change and non-linear development. Emphasising the importance of merging planning and complexity, this comprehensive Handbook also clarifies key concepts and theories, presen...
Article
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This paper develops a conceptual understanding of transformative innovations as shared activities, ideas and objects across locally rooted sustainability initiatives that explore and develop alternatives to incumbent and (perceived) unsustainable regimes that they seek to challenge, alter or replace. We synthesize empirical work from two European r...
Article
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Abstract Amplifying the impact of sustainability initiatives to foster transformations in urban and rural contexts, has received increasing attention in resilience, social innovation, and sustainability transitions research. We review the literature on amplification frameworks and propose an integrative typology of eight processes, which aim to inc...
Article
To advance the science and practice of implementing nature-based solutions in cities, it is important to examine the obstacles and provide means to overcome them. This paper presents a conceptual framework of policy needs for analysing the science of nature-based solutions’ implementation and connect it to the practice of their implementation that...
Article
Recent developments in high- and middle-income countries have exhibited a shift from conventional urban water systems to alternative solutions that are more diverse in source separation, decentralization, and modularization. These solutions include non-grid, small-grid, and hybrid systems to address such pressing global challenges as climate change...
Article
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One of the central, flagship actions of the Resilient Melbourne Strategy has been the development of a metropolitan urban forest strategy, called ‘Living Melbourne’. Its explicitly metropolitan scope has been one of the distinct features of Resilient Melbourne, established through the global city network 100 Resilient Cities, pioneered by the Rocke...
Article
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Creating a just and sustainable planet will require not only small changes, but also systemic transformations in how humans relate to the planet and to each other, i.e., social–ecological transformations. We suggest there is a need for collaborative environments where experimentation with new configurations of social–ecological systems can occur, a...
Book
How to progress climate science to be policy-relevant and actionable? This book presents a novel framework to give a positive vision and structuring approach to guide research and practice on transformative climate governance, to shift the narrative from apathy and stalemate to action and transformation. Our vision contrasts existing climate govern...
Article
The seminal piece of Davidson, Coenen and Gleeson gives a good overview of the role of C40 as a global intermediary for establishing networked governance and knowledge brokerage of cities. The identified benefits for cities participating and even driving city networks are well presented, however require a closer conceptual and empirical development...
Article
The increasing relevance of cities as transnational actors raises the need to align strategic environmental planning at local levels with the implementation of global goals. To bridge this gap, several transnational city networks have appeared over the years. This paper focuses on ICLEI, the global network of local governments for sustainability. T...
Article
The narrative of urban sustainability transformations epitomises the hope that urban governance can create the conditions to plan and govern cities in a way that they contribute to local and global sustainability and resilience. So far, urban governance is not delivering: novel governance approaches are emerging in cities worldwide , yet are unable...
Article
Nature-based solutions offer an exciting prospect for resilience building and advancing urban planning to address complex urban challenges simultaneously. In this article, we formulated through a coproduction process in workshops held during the first IPCC Cities and Climate Science Conference in Edmonton, Canada, in March 2018, a series of synthes...
Article
With a range of potential pathways to a sustainable future compatible with the Paris Agreement 1.5 °C target, scenario analysis has emerged as a key tool in studies of climate change mitigation and adaptation. A wide range of alternative scenarios have been created, and core amongst these are five socioeconomic scenarios (Shared Socioeconomic Pathw...
Article
We have entered the urban century and addressing a broad suite of sustainability challenges in urban areas is increasingly key for our chances to transform the entire planet towards sustainability. For example, cities are responsible for 70% of global greenhouse gas emissions and, at the same time, 90% of urban areas are situated on coastlines, mak...
Article
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In light of the persistent failure to reduce emissions decisively, facilitate long-term resilience against climate change and account for the connectedness of climate change with other social, environmental and economic concerns, we present a conceptual framework of capacities for transformative climate governance. Transformative climate governance...
Article
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The complex challenges arising from climate change that exceeds the +2 °C target (termed ‘high-end climate change’) in Europe require new integrative responses to support transformations to a more sustainable future. We present a novel methodology that combines transition management and high-end climate and socioeconomic change scenarios to identif...
Article
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The world is not yet on track to meet the Paris Agreement climate change target of keeping global average temperature rise within 2 °C above pre-industrial levels. Current greenhouse gas emission trends point to much more substantial warming, with possible increases of 4 °C or more in the long-term. This Special Issue describes findings from the IM...
Article
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Nature-based solutions are proliferating in European cities over the past years as viable solutions to urban challenges such as climate change, urban degeneration and aging infrastructures. With evidence amounting about nature-based solutions, there is a need to translate knowledge about nature-based solutions to future policy and planning. In this...
Article
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Transformations toward sustainability have recently gained traction, triggered in part by a growing recognition of the dramatic socio-cultural, political, economic, and technological changes required to move societies toward more desirable futures in the Anthropocene. However, there is a dearth of literature that emphasizes the crucial aspects of s...
Article
Climate change actions in cities worldwide are driving deep changes in urban governance. We ask whether new capacities for transformative climate governance are emerging in two cities that have experimented with urban climate governance: Rotterdam, the Netherlands, and New York City (NYC), United States. Transformative climate governance creates th...
Article
This special issue deals with various research questions regarding the impact of urban experimentation on transitions towards sustainability in different industries and sectors. Cities have been identified to play a vital role for sustainability transitions. Not only are they places with an increased urgency for change, but they also bring about ma...
Article
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Urban Living Labs (ULL) are considered spaces to facilitate experimentation about sustainability solutions. ULL represent sites that allow different urban actors to design, test and learn from socio-technical innovations. However, despite their recent proliferation in the European policy sphere, the underlying processes through which ULL might be a...
Article
The recent upsurge of interest in the experimental city as an arena within and through which urban sustainability is governed marks not only the emergence of the proliferation of forms of experimentation – from novel governance arrangements to demonstration projects, transition management processes to grassroots innovations – but also an increasing...
Article
This viewpoint presents insights on designing, engaging with and researching multi-stakeholder engagement spaces based on the experience of the ARTS project (2014–2016), active in five European cities also relevant for a broader European scale. We argue that those spaces represent an important new instrument of participatory governance that can elu...
Article
Full-text available
Experimentation as a means of governance for sustainability transitions has been advocated for years by transition scholars and geography scholars. We propose that examining the impact of experimentation requires an understanding of its embeddedness in place as a socio-spatial context. This notion of embeddedness, which conceptually aligns well wit...
Chapter
Full-text available
Global urbanization promises better services, stronger economies, and more connections; it also carries risks and unforeseeable consequences. To deepen our understanding of this complex process and its importance for global sustainability, we need to build interdisciplinary knowledge around a systems approach. Urban Planet takes an integrative look...
Chapter
Full-text available
Global urbanization promises better services, stronger economies, and more connections; it also carries risks and unforeseeable consequences. To deepen our understanding of this complex process and its importance for global sustainability, we need to build interdisciplinary knowledge around a systems approach. Urban Planet takes an integrative look...
Chapter
Global urbanization promises better services, stronger economies, and more connections; it also carries risks and unforeseeable consequences. To deepen our understanding of this complex process and its importance for global sustainability, we need to build interdisciplinary knowledge around a systems approach. Urban Planet takes an integrative look...
Article
The challenge of meeting the UNFCCC CoP21 goal of keeping global warming ‘well below 2 °C and to pursue efforts towards 1.5 °C’ (‘the 2–1.5 °C target’) calls for research efforts to better understand the opportunities and constraints for fundamental transformations in global systems dynamics which currently drive the unsustainable and inequitable u...
Chapter
Full-text available
Global urbanization promises better services, stronger economies, and more connections; it also carries risks and unforeseeable consequences. To deepen our understanding of this complex process and its importance for global sustainability, we need to build interdisciplinary knowledge around a systems approach. Urban Planet takes an integrative look...
Chapter
Urban climate experimentation is a deliberate process of knowledge production for new approaches and solutions to contribute to climate-resilient sustainability transitions. Whether and how cities succeed in ‘moving beyond experimentation’ is determined by the extent to which experimentation provides impulses to radical change that are embedded in...
Article
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City-regions as sites of sustainability transitions have remained under-explored so far. With our comparative analysis of five diverse European city-regions, we offer new insights on contemporary sustainability transitions at the urban level. In a similar vein, the pre-development and the take-off phase of sustainability transitions have been studi...
Article
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Either meeting the UNFCCC Paris agreement to limit global average warming below the 2–1.5 °C threshold, or going beyond it entails huge challenges in terms of institutional innovation and transformation. This research describes a participatory integrated assessment process aimed at exploring the options, opportunities, necessary capacities and impl...