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City-to-city learning within climate city networks: definition, significance, and challenges from a global perspective

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Abstract

Cities are increasingly joining forces through transnational municipal networks. The presented research focuses on one of the key services of these organisations: providing a platform for city-to-city learning. Interviews with representatives of networks and cities showed that through network organisations local policymakers aim to connect with peers from cities that face similar challenges or that are considered frontrunners. However, the main perceived added value of the studied network organisations is around their function as facilitator of personal networking among local policymakers. While learning certainly takes place and is actively promoted by some networks, most peer-exchanges are about the sharing of knowledge and do not qualify as learning. Therefore, we suggest to distinguish thoroughly between mere 'knowledge sharing' and processes of in-depth learning. Moreover, we call for more research focussing on the role of frontrunner cities in providing 'solutions', particularly up to which point these are helpful and down-scalable.

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... While the characteristics listed above significantly increase the likelihood that a city becomes a pioneer or leader, the city itself also has to become active in order to benefit from these advantages. These activities often center around setting ambitious greenhouse-gas reduction goals (Heinelt and Lamping 2015;Kern 2019;Otto et al. 2021;Salvia et al. 2021), pioneering place-based local experiments (Fitzgerald and Lenhart 2016;Kern 2019;Gailing et al. 2020;Haupt 2021), and exchanging practices and lessons with other cities, e.g. by joining international networks (Kern and Bulkeley 2009;Fenton and Busch 2016;Haupt et al. 2020;). Visible examples for place-based local experiments are eco-districts; neighborhood development or redevelopment projects that contribute to climate change mitigation and/or adaptation goals (Fitzgerald and Lenhart 2016). ...
... In this context, leaders often use placed-based experiments for the purpose of green city branding (Jönsson and Holgersen 2017;Growe and Freytag 2020;Haupt 2021). Furthermore, active participation in international climate networks can help popularize local experiments, raise the city's profile and attract followers (Fenton and Busch 2016;Haupt et al. 2020;Kern and Bulkeley 2009). Building upon the literature discussed in this section, we analyze how mid-sized post-socialist eastern German cities can manage to pioneer ambitious climate policies. ...
... First of all, the natures of Potsdam's and Rostock's network memberships suggest that neither has positioned itself as entrepreneurial leader. Leading cities often show strong external and international ambitions and are thus active in international networks, which they use to attract followers (Kern and Bulkeley 2009;Fenton and Busch 2016;Haupt et al. 2020). Potsdam is only active in the Klima-Bündnis that mostly focusses on municipalities from German-speaking countries. ...
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We illustrate how the two mid-sized post-socialist eastern German cities Potsdam and Rostock have managed to become climate pioneers, despite being located in regions that have been reluctant with regard to climate action. Drawing on municipal documentation and fieldwork interviews, we show how favorable and interrelated conditions concerning a city's socio-demographic, socioeconomic, and particularly political situation were more important for progressive climate action than both cities' embeddedness in their respective regions. We also show how the absence of external ambitions and mayoral support hindered Potsdam and Rostock from making the leap from a pioneer to a leader.
... Many, if not most, policy learning processes can be described as peer learning processes. Learning processes between peers that work in different cities but hold similar positions within their respective city administrations (e.g., climate managers) are also referred to as city-to-city learning (Seymoar et al. 2009;Ilgen et al. 2019;Moodley 2019;Haupt et al. 2020). ...
... Recent studies have explored how learning between city practitioners happens in practice and how it can be further stimulated (Fisher 2014;Ma 2017;Montero 2017;Haupt 2021a). It appears that learning is most efficient if it takes place rather informally between individuals that have already set up personal relations based on mutual trust (Seymoar et al. 2009;Haupt et al. 2020). Other than formal exchanges, informal exchanges often allow the exchange of "unfiltered information" (Haupt et al. 2020: 151). ...
... Other than formal exchanges, informal exchanges often allow the exchange of "unfiltered information" (Haupt et al. 2020: 151). Nevertheless, formal events or platforms often provide a starting point for city practitioners to establish personal connections, which can result in learning later on (Haupt et al. 2020). International city networks have proven to be helpful platforms to connect city practitioners from different cities (Kern and Bulkeley 2009;Bansard et al. 2017;Busch et al. 2018). ...
Chapter
Climate-related changes in the environment, such as an increase in the magnitude and frequency of extreme weather events, have a particularly drastic impact on cities. To build resilience to climate impacts, cities need to develop flexible adaptation strategies. One way to do this is through the creation and expansion of peer learning networks, as they allow knowledge exchange on adaptation strategies. This chapter describes and discusses the basic conditions that must be in place for cities to build climate adaptive capacity through peer learning. The mere exchange of knowledge, however, does not mean that the people concerned will also change their daily routine. Learning processes are much more complex. An important premise is that the collaborating actors speak the same language. Only then is it possible to classify newly acquired knowledge, to prioritize it, and to adjust one's own behavior according to new attributed values.
... Group learning is influenced by the characteristics of the participants (their ability and motivation to participate and to learn), the composition of the partnership (including the knowledge of the single partners as well as mutual trust), and the interaction processes (in quality and quantity) within the project (Vinke-de Kruijf & Pahl-Wostl, 2016). Transnational learning has been investigated recently in the context of city-to-city learning, specifically in the context of city-to-city learning on climate change (Bellinson & Chu, 2019;Haupt, Chelleri, van Herk, & Zevenbergen, 2020). In a recent article investigating transnational climate city networks, Haupt et al. (2020) find that there are great limitations to transnational learning, especially when learning from best practices and front-runner cities. ...
... Transnational learning has been investigated recently in the context of city-to-city learning, specifically in the context of city-to-city learning on climate change (Bellinson & Chu, 2019;Haupt, Chelleri, van Herk, & Zevenbergen, 2020). In a recent article investigating transnational climate city networks, Haupt et al. (2020) find that there are great limitations to transnational learning, especially when learning from best practices and front-runner cities. The authors argue for a distinction between the mere sharing of knowledge and the in-depth process of learning. ...
... The results underline that learning greatly relies on personal relations. Further, the high rating of learning perceived in the Local Status Quo Analyses and the Study Visits highlight the favouring of the aspiration of knowledge that is meaningful to the individual or the organization (Haupt et al., 2020). ...
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In the cooperation project ‘YOUMIG,’ funded by the INTERREG Danube transnational programme, challenges of youth migration were discussed in a transnational consortium consisting of project partners from different countries from Central and Eastern Europe experiencing difficulties such as a declining population and outmigration, as well as immigration of young people, which necessitated the provision of an integration infrastructure. Project outcomes included strategies as well as pilot activities performed by local-level authorities. The following article will consider outcomes as well as experiences from stakeholders involved in the project and investigate individual and organizational learning processes throughout the project. It will elaborate on the question of the extent to which transnational cooperation can potentially facilitate sustainable institutional changes and transformation. The results confirm the potential of transnational cooperation towards triggering learning and institutional change. Nevertheless, they underline that in the context of the project, the learning processes that could be achieved were predominantly of an individual nature and that the tangible outcomes could not lead to sustainable institutional changes.
... 3. Theorising city-to-city learning Toens and Landwehr (2009) observe that previously the policy literature on learning focused more on what was being learned by individuals and other political actors, rather than on how they learned from each other. So, whilst city-to-city cooperation has enjoyed much acclaim as an effective mechanism for municipal capacity building and policy transfer, very little is known about exactly how the knowledge and capacity transfer takes place and about the actual learning practices experienced by the practitioners involved (Bontenbal, 2013;Haupt, Chelleri, van Herk, & Zevenbergen, 2019). Campbell's (2012a) seminal work on city-to-city learning has begun to fill in this void, and his insights (which are used as key reference points in this paper), have revolutionized contemporary thinking on city learning and policy transfer with the introduction of the concept of learning typologies. ...
... The argument in Campbell's (2012a) thesis is that it is this personal trust and sharing of values that is an essential ingredient in determining whether those involved in city learning will reach out to others in learning networks in any meaningful or significant way. It is interesting to note that in recent research conducted by Haupt et al. (2019) which involved in-depth interviews with forty-two stakeholders engaged in city-to-city learning processes across twenty-two countries, also revealed the critical role of personal relationships based on mutual trust in contacts facilitated by trans-municipal networks. ...
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The importance of city-to-city learning processes in urban development has been gaining traction over the last two decades, particularly in the global North. Little empirical work has been done however, to critically analyse exactly how knowledge is transferred and the conditions under which these happen in order to facilitate better policy transfer between southern cities and regions. This paper focuses on the experiences of urban planning practitioners and key stakeholders from cities in South Africa, Malawi and Namibia that participated in a mentorship program coordinated by the international United Cities and Local Governments (UCLG). Using this case study, it develops a staged learning model that unpacks in detail, the mechanics of how the learning occurs during the program. In order to inform good practice, key ingredients that contribute to knowledge transfer – in this instance around urban strategic planning – is distilled. The study employed a qualitative approach combining observation, focus group and in-depth interviews with 18 practitioners directly involved in the program. The study shows that effective knowledge transfer requires inter-alia an expertly-facilitated and highly structured program of mutual learning. Most importantly however, the paper argues that the building of trust between the practitioners involved in city-to-city learning is critical for transformative action in cities of the global South.
... And yet few nation-states have shown a necessary commitment to sustainability (Sneddon et al. 2006;Quental et al. 2011;Smeds and Acuto 2018; Le Nguyen Long and Krause 2020) generating a policy vacuum, which various political actors have tried to fill with a patchwork of sustainable development instruments. Cities are becoming increasingly prominent actors in this policy space (Bulkeley 2010;Krause 2012;Watts 2017;Johnson 2018;Haupt et al. 2020). Some of these cities have attempted to tackle sustainability challenges by leveraging peer-to-peer cooperation with cities across borders. ...
... First, C2Cs might reinforce inequalities between (Mocca 2018; Geldin 2019) and within cities (Fastenrath et al. 2019). They may support an elitecentric governance (Haupt et al. 2020) while requiring the most vulnerable and marginalised urban residents to bear a disproportionate share of the burden for sustainability. This in turn may lead to 'lock-ins' (e.g. ...
Article
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The search for mechanisms that can bolster sustainable development governance is underway. Bilateral city-to-city partnerships (C2C) have been put forward as platform through which cities can strengthen sustainable development in urban landscapes. Here, we critically examine claims about the capacity of these international cooperative arrangements, originally designed and deployed as development aid delivery mechanisms, to promote sustainable development. Our systematic examination of the extant literature on bilateral North-South C2C in Latin America fails to provide sufficient evidence that C2C can deliver on its promise to promote robust governance, both generally and in the specific context of sustainable development. Instead, it seems that C2C is more likely to support than challenge entrenched practices which can weaken sustainable development governance. Identifying these tendencies is a first step in formulating strategies that may enhance C2Cs and other transnational partnerships aimed at improving urban sustainable development in the Global South.
... Seeking to understand these issues better, scholars have begun looking at the interactions between city networks and their members. An example is Haupt et al. (2020) study on city-to-city learning programs within climate city networks. Haupt et al. (2020) find knowledge and recognition benefits as the reasons cities participate in these programs. ...
... An example is Haupt et al. (2020) study on city-to-city learning programs within climate city networks. Haupt et al. (2020) find knowledge and recognition benefits as the reasons cities participate in these programs. However, they also find a mismatch between time, economic, and technical expertise requirements and the benefits offered by the city network to their members. ...
Article
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Voluntary programmes provide city networks with a central link to their city members. These voluntary programmes provide cities with benefits (e.g., knowledge, recognition, access to resources) if they meet the city network's programme requirements. This article seeks to understand how city networks make trade-offs between programme benefits and requirements to attract cities to the programmes they offer. We do so by analysing 55 voluntary programmes offered by 22 climate-related city networks using qualitative comparative analysis (QCA). We are particularly interested in the design of voluntary programmes that attract large numbers of participants. We find three main insights. First, programmes with a clear, single benefit are more attractive to city members than programmes with a broad range of benefits. Second, the combination of programme requirements and commitments allows city networks to target cohorts of cities based on their capacities and needs. Finally, cities are attracted to programmes that do not explicitly ask for direct results.
... When analysing the TMN governance instruments tools, Papin (2020) found almost all enabled information sharing. There have also been studies focusing specifically on learning and information sharing (Lee and van de Meene 2012;Mocca 2018;Haupt et al. 2019). According to Haupt et al. (2019), networking is often limited to information sharing that cannot be considered actual learning. ...
... There have also been studies focusing specifically on learning and information sharing (Lee and van de Meene 2012;Mocca 2018;Haupt et al. 2019). According to Haupt et al. (2019), networking is often limited to information sharing that cannot be considered actual learning. Instead of horizontal and equal learning networking seems to encourage dynamics in which certain cities pictured as role models from whom others then learn (Mocca 2018). ...
... In the 1990s, forerunner cities started to tackle the issue of climate change by developing strategies, formulating emission reduction targets, and joining transnational networks [34][35][36]. Climate policy forerunners usually show high capacities for action [3,8,37,38] [3,[37][38][39]43]. ...
... Both cities are comparatively well-equipped in terms of personnel responsible for climate activities, which is a typical characteristic of climate forerunners [3,8,37,38]. However, in Bern and Potsdam, climate mitigation and adaption, on the one hand, and heritage management, on the other, are handled differently with regard to the degree of institutionalization, as well as the degree of integration and coordination between them. ...
Article
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Developing sustainable, carbon-neutral, and climate-resilient districts seems to be particularly challenging with respect to historic city centers. However, barriers posed by legal requirements for historical buildings are counterbalanced by opportunities because historic cities have not undergone urban modernization and did not embrace the concept of functional cities, which nowadays impedes urban sustainability transformations. Thus, this paper focuses on the relationship between cultural heritage, urban sustainable development, and climate policy. We study continuity and change in the mid-sized UNESCO World Heritage cities Potsdam (Germany) and Bern (Switzerland). These matching forerunner cities share many characteristics, which enables them to transfer policies and jointly create new solutions for common problems. We find that national context matters, but we also identify functional equivalents like referenda and active citizen participation. Despite many similarities, Potsdam is ahead of Bern with respect to the institutionalization and integration of climate mitigation and adaptation. The comparative analysis (interviews and document analysis) identifies innovations that can be transferred between the two cities (e.g., Potsdam’s integrative climate policy or Bern’s efforts to become a role model for stakeholders and citizens). Moreover, the challenge to coordinate heritage management and climate governance offers chances for cooperation between matching cities like Bern and Potsdam.
... This was mentioned by many climate managers, and it was only possible due to being a small intimate group. These findings confirm what Haupt et al. (2020) said: "social and personal skills of the involved stakeholders will determine the success and evolution of city-to-city learning." (p. ...
Article
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Reaching the 1.5°C target of the Paris Agreement not only requires ambitious goals from national governments, but also the active participation of local municipalities. It is in cities where climate actions need to be implemented to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and reach international and national climate goals. While the importance of cities and their participation in networks has been well-researched, studies have systematically neglected the committed individual agents in small and medium-sized cities and overlooked the importance of national networks. To address these research gaps, this article looks at how local climate managers use their municipality's membership in national networks to increase action and implementation. This article is based on 12 semi-structured interviews with seven municipal representatives and five representatives of two national city networks, and four informal discussions. Through comparative content analysis, it was identified that the main functions derived from network participation are direct exchanges between the climate managers, mobilization of others in the municipality, accounting of greenhouse gas emissions, and project support. These functions helped overcome key limitations that the actors often faced within the municipality related to a lack of legal competences, administrative resources and internal support for climate work and financial resources. This has implications for city networks which have been focusing on larger cities and not including smaller cities who have less capacity and who can benefit the most from the functions provided by them.
... Well-known examples are for instance United Cities and Local Governments (UCLG), Local Governments for Sustainability (ICLEI), 100 Resilient Cities and C40 (Labaeye and Sauer 2013;Haupt and Coppola 2019). Most of them, particularly the two latter ones, heavily focus on capital cities and large cities (Hunt and Watkiss 2011;Araos et al. 2016;Gordon 2016;Coppola et al. 2020;Haupt et al. 2020). ...
Article
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Cities are particularly vulnerable to the impacts of climate change. Many larger cities have identified the potential impacts of different climate change adaptation scenarios. However, their smaller and medium-sized counterparts are often not able to address climate risks effectively due to a lack of necessary resources. Since a large number of cities worldwide are indeed small and medium-sized, this lack of preparedness represents a crucial weakness in global response systems. A promising approach to tackling this issue is to establish regional municipal networks. Yet, how might a regional network for small and medium-sized cities be systematically designed and further developed? Focussing on the German federal state of Baden-Wuerttemberg, we have explored this question by applying a participatory action research approach. As part of our research, we established a regional network framework for small and medium-sized cities. The framework supports small and medium-sized cities in identifying key regional actors, while taking local and regional contextual factors into account. Based on our findings, we suggest that other small and medium sized cities follow these steps: develop the knowledge base; build the network; and transfer and consolidate knowledge.
... Most studies on climate governance concentrate on describing and explaining the climate change policies of a particular country or region [9]. Also, there is a paucity of studies that focus on the importance of multidisciplinary expertise in improving climate change mitigation and adaptation efforts across countries [10]. As noted in [11], the defragmentation of research and cooperation between disciplines amplified the issue of climate change and led to the establishment of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). ...
Article
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Climate change governance has metamorphosed from multilateral pacts such as the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change and the Paris Agreement to the enactment of country-specific dedicated legislation for mitigation and adaptation. A common feature of this phenomenon is the establishment of an expert committee on climate change, or simply, a climate change commission (CCC). For effective climate change governance, a multidisciplinary CCC will play a key role. The objective of this study is to inquire into the multidisciplinary requirements of a CCC and how multidisciplinarity can influence the efficacy of climate governance measures. Accordingly, it inquires into transnational circumstances on the disciplinary/multidisciplinary composition of CCCs and samples the perspectives of over 120 climate policy experts-through a structured survey-to draw insights into how countries could establish a suitable multidisciplinary CCC in legislative and policy processes. Key results from transnational circumstances and expert perspectives reveal the propriety of establishing CCCs to drive robust mitigation and adaptation policies. As the study shows, multiple countries have already incorporated diverse domains and backgrounds of expertise in the composition of their CCCs. Furthermore, our experts' survey reveals overwhelming support among respondents (98%) for CCCs, and all those who support these commissions believe they should be, to some degree, independent and multidisciplinary. Experts' perspectives reveal a spectrum of specific desirable multidisciplinary categories-legal, physical science, biosciences, energy and engineering, economics, planning, social sciences, ethics, governance, health, and communication. We also highlight some caveats regarding multidisciplinarity and reflect on the existence of quasi-institutions across countries without dedicated CCCs.
... In line with the literature, our results show that city size plays a key role in shaping local climate policy (Araos et al. 2016;Haupt et al. 2020;Kern et al. 2005;Reckien et al. 2018;Salvia et al. 2021). Big cities and metropolitan areas have more capacity to develop local climate policies than smaller cities (Haupt 2020;Kern 2019;Reckien et al. 2015). ...
Article
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Climate mitigation and climate adaptation are crucial tasks for urban areas and can involve synergies as well as trade-offs. However, few studies have examined how mitigation and adaptation efforts relate to each other in a large number of differently sized cities, and therefore we know little about whether forerunners in mitigation are also leading in adaptation or if cities tend to focus on just one policy field. This article develops an internationally applicable approach to rank cities on climate policy that incorporates multiple indicators related to (1) local commitments on mitigation and adaptation, (2) urban mitigation and adaptation plans and (3) climate adaptation and mitigation ambitions. We apply this method to rank 104 differently sized German cities and identify six clusters: climate policy leaders, climate adaptation leaders, climate mitigation leaders, climate policy followers, climate policy latecomers and climate policy laggards. The article seeks explanations for particular cities’ positions and shows that coping with climate change in a balanced way on a high level depends on structural factors, in particular city size, the pathways of local climate policies since the 1990s and funding programmes for both climate mitigation and adaptation.
... Organisational learning literature posits this human side as critical to mutual learning. Mutual trust builds ties, and trans-municipal, personal relationships determine the quality of learning outcomes (Aydalot, 1986;Nonaka et al., 2000;Haupt et al., 2019). Maintaining a learning environment where participants from different cities freely ask questions is what Campbell (2012a, p. 11) refers to as 'third order learning'. ...
Article
Despite increasing scholarly focus on inter-city policy mobilities there has been insufficient emphasis on understanding the role of municipal institutional factors in enabling global policy translation. This paper argues that the value of knowledge management vehicles in city-to-city learning and ‘knowledge-sharing enablers’ deserves prominence. The author employs autoethnography as a method of qualitative inquiry, chronicling Durban’s Municipal Institute of Learning’s establishment, successes and challenges through changing institutional landscapes. In a context where rapid urbanisation has African planners looking to learn from other cities, the story offers both useful lessons in knowledge exchange practice and opportunities for critical scholarly reflection.
... This involves co-production of knowledge with policymakers, societal actors and citizens, combination of different knowledge types and systems (e.g. scientific, applied/practical, indigenous/traditional), and city-tocity learning initiatives in city networks (Elmqvist et al., 2019;Feagan et al., 2019;Ilgen et al, 2019;Ribeiro & Gonçalves, 2019;Haupt et al., 2020;Lemos et al., 2020). Such efforts will involve actors with multiple frames of urban resilience and are inherently highly political processes. ...
Article
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Cities worldwide face climate change and other complex challenges and strive to become more resilient to the shocks and stresses that these bring. The notion of urban (climate) resilience has become highly popular in both research and practice. However, the concept is inherently malleable; it can be framed in different ways, emphasising different problems, causes, moral judgements, and solutions. This review explores contrasting ways of framing urban climate resilience and their potential consequences. It identifies four typical framings: Urban Shock-Proofing (short-term & system focus), Resilience Planning (long-term & system focus), Community Disaster Resilience (short-term & community focus), and Resilient Community Development (long-term & community focus). These framings lead to different approaches to urban resilience and climate adaptation research, science-policy-society interactions, governance, and practical resilience-building. They also offer different synergies with wider sustainability efforts, including the SDGs. Resilience Planning is widely represented in urban climate adaptation research. However, Resilient Community Development, dealing with community self-determination, equity, and deeper long-term socio-political determinants of vulnerability, is currently underdeveloped. Expansion of current scientific and institutional toolboxes is needed to support and build community-based adaptive and transformative capacities. Explicit reflection on framing is important to facilitate collaboration among actors and across disciplinary and departmental siloes.
... Рост влияния таких сообществ на трансплантацию институтов следует признать реакцией на качественно новый уровень сложности возникающих институциональных проблем. Транснациональные муниципальные сети -пример эпистемических сообществ, получивших бурное развитие в последнее десятилетие и создавших множество каналов трансплантации мезоинститутов (Haupt et al., 2020). В классической теории важную роль играют институциональные предприниматели (инициаторы, визионеры и лоббисты трансплантации), но они позиционируются как своего рода героиодиночки. ...
Article
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Most of research on institutional transplantation is based on a set of general methodological principles and theoretical positions, which in total might be termed the “classical theory”. Despite its persuasiveness and wide currency (including outside the economic discourse), the classical theory of institutional transplantation has many built-in methodological limitations. It has a pronouncedly one-sided character, is based on reductionist approaches, and has problems with a systemic explanation of transplant processes in the modern economy. The article presents an interdisciplinary research program for the extended theory of institutional transplantation. The extended theory proposes to pay special attention to bottomup transplants, as well as the role of institution-based communities — heterogeneous networks of internal and external actors of transplanted institutions. Adaptation of a transplanted institution to the new environment is viewed more as an active transformation of the environment by actors (institutional niche construction). The deviations from foreign prototypes arising in transplanted institutions are interpreted as adaptive refunctionalizations rather than transplant failures. Special emphasis is placed on the interactive communication field in which transplanted institutions develop. As a result of transplantation, it is proposed to consider not the dichotomy of successful adaptation and rejection of a new institution, but the emergence of institutional assemblage — a complex system of borrowed and local institutions based on irreducible institutional logics.
... While cities in the South are less industrialized and generate far lower levels of emissions than those in the North, climate adaptation planning is a top priority agenda in both. In the North, adaptation planning is well established [166,167], especially where cities share sustainability-oriented knowledge and experience through city-to-city networks [168][169][170][171][172]. However, cities in the South are in their early stages of adaptation planning and tend to learn best practices from their North counterparts [167]. ...
Chapter
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Human settlements are comprehensive, i.e., shaped by human ecology and the relationship between humans as a social being and biological organisms and their interaction with their environments. This chapter explores urban morphology and landscape ecology as a pretext to a wider examination of the vast scholarship of why humans settle where they settle—with the focus on cities. The movement away from rural to urban is considered in conjunction with urban energy use, agriculture and food security, and sustainability. Maladaptation to climate change is considered in the context to urban environmental pollution, human health and well-being, and quality of life. Cities have a unique opportunity to advance policies that ensure the energy supply and food production are reliable, affordable, and environmentally sustainable. In terms of energy research, direct effects on people, communities, and countries in terms of economic growth, health, safety, the environment, education, and employment are investigated. Agricultural data is presented from a global perspective with specific land use and land cover specificities. Food security, food health, and food production are interfaced with regional populations and agricultural land use. An overview of cities from the Global North versus the Global South is assessed in terms developmental parameters—including city-to-city climate action. These city variances, specific to developed and developing countries, indicate megacities in the North have relatively high affluent and stable populations while those in the South have rapid expanding and overcrowded ones. Case-specific research into the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on informal settlements is looked at in terms of direct and indirect impacts. The complexity of these issues signposts different types of human settlements and conditions and veers toward piecing together the urban challenges and future development of the twenty-first century.
... TMNs provide a space for cities to learn from one and other. However, most peer exchanges fall short to be called learning; they can be defined only as knowledge sharing (Haupt et al., 2020) as they do not result in substantial changes in urban climate governance (Shefer, 2019). Nevertheless, it might result in modest policy changes (Shefer, 2019). ...
Thesis
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As climate change continues to threaten us more and more, different ways of governing climate change are considered. Multi-level governance approach is widely used in the literature to examine how global, national, and local actor interacts and influence each other. In this thesis I analyse how multi-level governance of climate change work in the case of Istanbul by adopting a power-based approach. I conducted semi-structured interviews with representatives from Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality, C40 network and Green Thought Association. Besides I qualitatively analysed documents from Turkish state, the municipality, and Green Thought Association. Findings suggest that the state holds regulatory power resources; therefore, the municipality has limited independence for implementing policies. Moreover, the laws that the municipality is subjected to does not address climate change adequately; thus, it prevents the municipality to access necessary financial resources. However, the collaborative relationship between the municipality and C40 increases the municipalities capacities through knowledge sharing. Enhanced interaction with civil society also increases the capacities of the municipality. I argue that, with the enhanced capacity, Istanbul could make effective advocacy towards the state to update the existing laws to be compatible with the climate change needs and put pressure on the state to do its share to contribute to global efforts to keep global warming at 2°C.
... However, such learning is difficult to achieve. Studies of learning in city networks for climate change have frequently found that despite some level of knowledge sharing and facilitation of personal contacts, deep (or second order) learning rarely takes place (Haupt, Chelleri, van Herk & Zevenbergen, 2020;Shefer, 2019 (Dalkir, 2017) investigates, among others, how knowledge is transferred and diffused in organizations. It distinguishes two knowledge types (Haldin-Herrgard, 2000): the structured or explicit knowledge that individuals hold consciously in their mental focus and which can be stored and shared more easily. ...
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Despite the extensive literature on learning in urban transitions, we still have a limited understanding on how higher-order learning takes place in transition management and is spread within the transition arena. In this paper we analyze the efforts of transferring such embedded knowledge and its interrelation with learning through the examples of three Swedish municipalities engaged in urban transition management. To do so, we developed a framework of learning ripples that conceptualizes learning across social boundaries as an active and two-way process that goes beyond transferring and receiving knowledge, but also requires higher order learning that includes knowledge integration in the form of defining and formulating one's role and contributions to transitions. We found that higher order learning is largely influenced by the quality and frequency of interactions between the transferer and receivers. The further a stakeholder was located from the center of the transition arena in terms of direct interactions, the less chance occurred for higher order learning that resulted in tensions and conflicts in the collaboration. Our results show the problem as a lack of knowledge integration or a lack of conditions which allow stakeholders to articulate their views or develop an idea about their own role in the whole process.
... These relationships and networks create spaces "with their own power relations and governance institutions" that create proximity between actors (Boschma, 2005). For instance, various transnational city-to-city (C2C) networks, e.g., ICLEI, C40, and Connecting Delta Cities, create a transnational governance arena where local governments across national borders exchange ideas, share best practices, inspire laggard cities to adopt climate-friendly policies, and generally pursue agendas independent of their respective national governments (Lee and Jung, 2018;Haupt et al., 2020). Networks, such as, ICLEI and C40, participate in international governance via organizations, such as the IPCC, UN, and WHO. ...
Article
This research examines the composition and operation of a multi-scalar, inter-urban coalition in Israel's unfolding green building transition. Using the Multi-level perspective as an analytical framework, this research draws on concepts from policy entrepreneurship to flesh out the role of the city and city networks in transition activity. It examines how an entrepreneurial coalition of cities – the Forum 15 – that sits both within and without the sociotechnical building regime facilitated the agency of regime members to engender a transition. We use chiefly qualitative research methods, specifically, semi-structured interviews and policy document analysis, to examine the critical function of an inter-urban coalition of 15 fiscally independent municipalities in leveraging its independence and resources to induce a national green building regime transformation. We suggest that combining the multi-level perspective with insights from entrepreneurial governance lends insight into the potential role of the city and its multi-scalar linkages in engendering a transition.
Technical Report
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Aufgrund der hohen Konzentration von Bevölkerung, ökonomischen Werten und Infrastrukturen können Städte stark von extremen Wetterereignissen getroffen werden. Insbesondere Hitzewellen und Überflutungen in Folge von Starkregen verursachen in Städten immense gesundheitliche und finanzielle Schäden. Um Schäden zu verringern oder gar zu vermeiden, ist es notwendig, entsprechende Vorsorge- und Klimaanpassungsmaßnahmen zu implementieren. Im Projekt „Urbane Resilienz gegenüber extremen Wetterereignissen – Typologien und Transfer von Anpassungsstrategien in kleinen Großstädten und Mittelstädten” (ExTrass) lag der Fokus auf den beiden extremen Wetterereignissen Hitze und Starkregen sowie auf kleineren Großstädten (100.000 bis 500.000 Einwohner:innen) und kreisfreien Mittelstädten mit mehr als 50.000 Einwohner:innen. Im Projekt wurde die Stärkung der Klimaresilienz als Verbesserung der Fähigkeiten von Städten, aus vergangenen Ereignissen zu lernen sowie sich an antizipierte Gefahren anzupassen, verstanden. Klimaanpassung wurde demnach als ein Prozess aufgefasst, der durch die Umsetzung von potenziell schadensreduzierenden Maßnahmen beschreib- und operationalisierbar wird. Das Projekt hatte zwei Ziele: Erstens sollte die Klimaresilienz in den drei Fallstudienstädten Potsdam, Remscheid und Würzburg messbar gestärkt werden. Zweitens sollten Transferpotenziale zwischen Groß- und Mittelstädten in Deutschland identifiziert und besser nutzbar gemacht werden, damit die Wirkung von Pilotvorhaben über die direkt involvierten Städte hinausgehen kann. Im Projekt standen folgende vier Leitfragen im Fokus: • Wie verbreitet sind Klimaanpassungsaktivitäten in Großstädten und größeren kreisfreien Mittelstädten in Deutschland? • Welche hemmenden und begünstigenden Faktoren beeinflussen die Klimaanpassung? • Welche Maßnahmen der Klimaanpassung werden tatsächlich umgesetzt, und wie kann die Umsetzung verbessert werden? Was behindert? • Inwiefern lassen sich Beispiele guter Praxis auf andere Städte übertragen, adaptieren oder weiterentwickeln? Die Hauptergebnisse zu diesen Fragestellungen sind im vorliegenden Bericht zusammengefasst.
Article
Study visits are an underresearched phenomenon, particularly in the field of climate change adaptation. Drawing on interviews with key local stakeholders, this article investigates study visits organized by European municipal climate networks. The results of this exploratory research show that study visits about adaptation policies can (1) particularly stimulate conceptual learning, (2) increase the credibility of policies within municipal administrations, (3) be used as strategic instruments by mentor cities, (4) be more successful if the peer-cities are not too different (in terms of size, institutional context), and (5) under certain conditions, lead to policy adoption in a learning city. Future research needs to critically discuss the mass suitability of learning from frontrunner cities. Furthermore, a call is raised for more research and practical action on how to initiate and improve learning exchanges beyond the strict division between mentors and learners. Instead, the focus needs to be on mutual learning exchanges.
Chapter
In the last decades, the discourse on resilience has become extremely influential across the globe. In urban studies, debates have emphasised how cities can be interpreted both as spaces critically exposed to different kinds of risks, as well as actors who must mobilize political initiatives in order to cope with them. This chapter focuses on the mainstreaming and institutionalisation of discourses on urban resilience within local and supralocal networks. The paper analyses the implementation of the international initiative ‘100 Resilient Cities’, promoted by the Rockefeller Foundation, in Milan and Rome. Based on observant participation and in-depth interviews with stakeholders, this study mobilises empirical evidence according to three analytical dimensions: downscaling; internal institutionalisation; and external institutionalisation.
Article
The German mid-sized city of Remscheid, located in the German state of North Rhine-Westphalia, can be characterised as an unlikely climate pioneer. Remscheid is a least likely candidate for pioneering climate policies. Previous research suggests that climate pioneers are typically characterised by a growing population, favourable economic conditions, political influence of green parties, a strong civil society, and a supportive local research environment. However, none of the listed characteristics apply to Remscheid – quite to the contrary. Our paper aims at solving this research puzzle, based on an exploratory in-depth case-study of Remscheid's climate policy pathway since the early 1990s. The city performs much better than most German cities of comparable size because the lack of capacities can be compensated by strong key actors and creative policy-making. Local actors manage to attract external funding from a variety of sources and frequently participate in applied research projects on relevant topics. However, we also find that the uncertainty of planning from project to project has a negative effect on setting long-term climate goals and developing holistic visions for the future. We need more studies on rather disadvantaged cities that have nevertheless managed to become climate pioneers. Models created by unlikely pioneers such as Remscheid have to be made visible and accessible for cities that work under similar conditions.
Chapter
This chapter provides a critical reflection on the notions of risk and uncertainty and their relevance in philosophy and in urban planning. Decision making under conditions of risk and of uncertainty are differentiated and discussed from a philosophical perspective. Then, the diverging applications of risk and uncertainty in both philosophy and urban planning are analysed. We hold the view that cities are fundamentally uncertain systems that require new forms of reasoning and innovative methods of scenario building and planning in order to face the challenges of urban uncertainty. An integrated approach towards a philosophy of urban planning is outlined.
Book
This book presents and discusses methodological approaches and operational tools aimed at increasing the awareness and skills necessary to face the social, economic and environmental challenges usually encountered in spatial planning. In addition, it deals with the concepts of risk and resilience from both a theoretical and operational point of view. The book promotes a better understanding of risk, resilience, and related notions such as vulnerability, fragility and anti-fragility in urban and landscape studies, while also analyzing new planning policies.
Article
This paper qualitatively investigates one of the influential transnational municipal networks, Covenant of Mayors for Climate and Energy (CoM)’s position in three Turkish municipal governments in bridging the climate change science and climate change policy gap. In the last two decades, the importance of science-based policymaking for climate mitigation and adaptation and transnational municipal networks empowered by municipalities that guide city policies linked to international agreements has been recognized. In this paper, we argue that CoM has acted as a boundary-object in producing climate change policies and plans in Turkish municipal governments. However, CoM has done so to a certain extent; their effectiveness was limited due to the general atmosphere on climate change policies in Turkey. We substantiate this claim through a two-layer examination: a case-specific analysis of three municipalities and semi-structured interviews with thirteen experts in climate change policy-related issues.
Technical Report
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Der vorliegende Forschungsbericht befasst sich mit dem Transfer von Klima-Policies (z.B. Strategien zur Dekarbonisierung oder Ansätze zur Klimawandelanpassung) zwischen Städten und fokussiert sich hierbei auf Literaturbeiträge aus den Politik- und Verwaltungswissenschaften sowie der Humangeographie. Policies werden hierbei als übergreifender Begriff verstanden, der auf Problemlösung abzielende Aktivitäten staatlicher Akteur*innen zusammenfasst. Im Fokus des Berichts stehen insbesondere konzeptionelle Ansätze zu Transfer und Skalierung, interne und externe Voraussetzungen für den Transfer, sowie die Entstehungsbedingungen und das Transferpotential von Policies. Zentrale Erkenntnisse der Literaturstudie sind: - Die spezifischen Kontextbedingungen der aufnehmenden Stadt sind entscheidend für das Gelingen des Transfers, wobei die Erfolgsaussichten bei sich ähnelnden Städten (z.B. ähnliche Größe und institutionelle Rahmenbedingungen) am größten sind. - Policies werden nur äußerst selten unverändert von einer Stadt auf eine andere übertragen. - Ebenso wichtig wie die räumliche Skalierung (Übertragung einer Policy von einer Stadt auf eine andere) ist auch die zeitliche Skalierung (langfristige institutionelle Einbettung und Verstetigung der Policy). - Transfer und die Skalierung von Policies können durch lokale Schlüsselakteur*innen (z.B. Umweltdezernent*innen) sowie durch Transferagenturen (z.B. Energie- und Klimaagenturen) entscheidend begünstigt werden. Der Bericht wurde erstellt im Rahmen des BMBF-geförderten Projekts ExTrass Urbane Resilienz gegenüber extremen Wetterereignissen – Typologien und Transfer von Anpassungsstrategien in kleinen Großstädten und Mittelstädten (2018-2020). ExTrass verfolgt das Ziel, die Resilienz von Groß- und Mittelstädten gegenüber Hitze und Starkregen messbar zu stärken sowie Transferpotenziale zwischen Städten besser nutzbar zu machen. Dabei wird Resilienz als adaptiver (Lern-)Prozess verstanden, in dem Kommunen Maßnahmen aufgreifen und um-setzen, von denen ein schadensreduzierender Effekt bei Wetterextremen erwartet wird (z.B. die Reduktion von Sachschäden oder von Rettungseinsätzen). Auf diesen konzeptionell ausgerichteten Bericht folgt Ende 2021 ein weiterer Bericht. Dieser umfasst - anders als der vorliegende Bericht - auch empirische Ergebnisse zum Thema Transfer von Policies zwischen Städten, die im Rahmen des Projekts ExTrass generiert wurden. Zudem wird der Fokus dann weniger auf Policies sondern stärker auf konkreten Instrumenten und Maßnahmen zur lokalen Klimaanpassung liegen. https://leibniz-irs.de/wissenstransfer/transferpublikationen/irs-dialog/transfer-und-skalierung-von-lokaler-klimapolitik
Chapter
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One way to tackle climate change locally is to adopt successful approaches pioneered elsewhere. However, because most research has focused on large forerunner cities, smaller municipalities with a lower profile may not be aware of initiatives that are directly relevant to them. We need more research into ‘ordinary’ cities that are located “off the map” to correct this imbalance and highlight creative practices that could be replicated elsewhere. Drawing on climate and environmental governance literature and two cases from Germany, this chapter explores how ‘ordinary’ cities may become pioneers. Mid-sized cities like Remscheid and Göttingen demonstrate that local governments can catch up with the leaders, even if they have only limited resources and capacities, for example through participation in third-party funded climate-related projects. We need to study and highlight many more similar examples, so that they can serve as models to help other ‘ordinary’ cities transform into pioneers.
Article
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Our paper explores the climate pathways of the three mid-sized cities German of Potsdam, Remscheid and Würzburg. Particular emphasis was put on key events (e.g. disruptive events) and key actors (e.g. local decision-makers) that significantly influenced the development of local climate policy. The path analyses are based on the analysis of several key policy documents such as climate strategies and reports and 34 interviews with local actors from city administration and politics. Main results were that all three cities started to tackle climate change strategically despite the absence of major disaster events. Furthermore, it emerged that key events driving local climate action were often not directly related to the topic of climate change but concerned other areas of city development in the first place. Lastly, the results suggest that the set of key actors advancing local climate policies should most favorably consist of powerful initiators and accelerators on the executive level, active, well-connected and third-party funds generating supporters within the city administration, and information brokers from science. Future research needs to focus on the interplay between these different key actors. Furthermore, there is a lack of research on mid-sized cities in Germany. There is a need for more case studies in German cities, particularly in those that have not been visible as forerunners. This applies particularly to cities with limited local capacities that have nevertheless managed to pioneer climate policies. Their successful strategies and approaches could serve as models for cities that have to work under similar conditions.
Article
Universities increasingly facilitate as well as study social change alongside decision‐makers and users. This is partly in response to demands for civic engagement and demonstrable public impact. While existing scholarship has critically examined these collaborations’ impacts, less work addresses either how they develop or what benefits they confer to participants—especially those operating at local scales. By examining two university‐initiated networks comprising 28 cities in 12 European countries working on immigrant integration issues, we show how two‐way knowledge exchange among researchers and municipal policymakers can foster peer learning and co‐productive dynamics. We argue that these exchanges socialize cities into more cohesive groups with shared goals and agendas, particularly in low‐salience policy areas, as integration can be in some national contexts. Moreover, universities and university‐affiliated researchers play unique roles in facilitating this process. Our results have theoretical implications for multi‐level and networked governance and offer practical guidance for designing knowledge exchange initiatives.
Article
In the context of proliferating urban climate initiatives in China, a more fundamental understanding of governance innovation and implementation is essential. Existing literature tends to overlook the critical examination into governance and give sufficient consideration to the Chinese context. This article develops a conceptual framework on low-carbon governance and implementation in urban China, drawing upon a Multi-Level Governance (MLG) perspective, a policy-dimensional framework, and a mobilities approach. A case study of Hongqiao Business District, Shanghai, is used to illustrate the framework's application and to establish an overall low-carbon MLG picture with new insights from empirical evidence. The case study follows a mixed use of data collection methods, consisting of semi-structured interviews, documentary analysis and sites visits and observations. As the case study demonstrates, low-carbon development in Hongqiao has greatly benefited from the early stages of legalisation and multi-level governance innovations (such as regulatory governance, enabling governance, and governance through provision). The perspective of authority relations provides attention to hierarchical levels of government but also examine scales across territorial and administrative boundaries more flexibly. Low-carbon strategy development and implementation are found to involve both traditional policy-making channels and informal governance spaces, with actors playing different roles. Beyond academia, the research findings are helpful to accelerating the sharing and up-scaling of knowledge based around an in-depth examination of a high-profile ‘low carbon’ district in China.
Technical Report
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Dieser Forschungsbericht bietet vertiefte klimapolitische Pfadanalysen von 17 Groß- und Mittelstädten in den Bundesländern Baden-Württemberg, Bayern, Brandenburg und Nordrhein-Westfalen. Die Pfadanalysen basieren auf umfangreichen Analysen zahlreicher Policy-Dokumente und Interviews mit Vertreter:innen aus Stadtverwaltungen, Kommunalpolitik und Zivilgesellschaft. Die Fallstädte sind im Hinblick auf Klimapolitik unterschiedlich aktiv und lassen sich fünf verschiedenen Stadttypen zuordnen, die anhand von strukturellen Merkmalen definiert sind. Im Fokus des Berichts steht der Einfluss dieser Stadttypen auf die klimapolitische Aktivität einer Stadt. Dabei kommt die Studie zu folgenden zentralen Ergebnissen: Städte, die seit Jahrzehnten ein Image als Grüne Städte pflegen und als Vorreiter in den Bereichen Umweltschutz und Nachhaltigkeit gelten, sind auch im Bereich Klimaschutz und meist auch im Bereich Klimaanpassung weit fortgeschritten. Wissenschaftsstädten fällt es deutlich leichter klimapolitische Akzente zu setzen als anderen Städten. Dies liegt unter anderem an den oft günstigeren ökonomischen, sozio-ökonomischen und sozio-demographischen Rahmenbedingungen. Industriestädten (im Wandel), bei denen es sich oft um schrumpfende Städte handelt, fällt es schwerer, klimapolitische Erfolge zu erzielen als etwa innovativen und wachsenden Wissenschaftsstädten. In Welterbestädten kommt es oft zu Konflikten zwischen Klimapolitik und Denkmalschutz. Dennoch können je nach Art des Welterbes auch Synergien entstehen, da beide Aspekte Bestandteil einer nachhaltigen Stadtentwicklung sein können. In Städteregionen kommt es oft zu fruchtbaren Kooperationen zwischen Städten (z.B. gemeinsame Klimastrategien). Bestätigen können wir dies aber nur für die Kooperation zwischen Großstädten innerhalb einer Städteregion. Der Bericht wurde erstellt im Rahmen des BMBF-geförderten Projekts ExTrass Urbane Resilienz gegenüber extremen Wetterereignissen – Typologien und Transfer von Anpassungsstrategien in kleinen Großstädten und Mittelstädten(2018-2020). ExTrass verfolgt das Ziel, die Resilienz von Groß- und Mittelstädten gegenüber Hitze und Starkregen messbar zu stärken sowie Transferpotenziale zwischen Städten besser nutzbar zu machen. Dabei wird Resilienz als adaptiver (Lern-)Prozess verstanden, in dem Kommunen Maßnahmen aufgreifen und umsetzen, von denen ein schadensreduzierender Effekt bei Wetterextremen erwartet wird (z.B. die Reduktion von Sachschäden oder von Rettungseinsätzen).
Chapter
In the twenty-first century, cities are prominent players on the international scene and have been considered to be a platform for development, increasing the standard of living for their residents. The emergence of COVID-19 signifies a critical challenge for the fight against poverty, the increase in the quality of life, the development of the world population, and the reputation of multilateralism to overcome global problems. In this unexpected context, cities have been at the center of the pandemic, but at the same time, cities can be a fundamental part of the solution. In this article, we analyze the evolution of cities in the international arena to rethink how cities can be a relevant international actor boosting the International Development Cooperation (IDC) in a postpandemic world. The starting point is that the COVID-19 outbreak increases the importance of cities in solving global problems through building or reinforcing international networks to overcome the crisis. During the pandemic, many cities have not only responded in an agile, flexible, and adequate manner, but have also woven international collaboration networks to share knowledge and give and receive international aid. In this sense, the actions of cities in the field of international cooperation were a valuable tool to increase the capacity of cities to be resilient. Also, we analyze the traditional role of cities in the architecture of IDC, showing that cities are not newcomer actors on the international scene. Additionally, we discuss sustainable cities and communities as a specific goal of the Sustainable Development Goals as a result of the recognition of their value as important actors for achieving many of the objectives of sustainable development. Finally, we conclude with a series of recommendations on how cities can contribute to the development path from the new environment caused by the pandemic.
Article
It is often thought that local governments in the Global South have less influence over climate city networks than those from the Global North. We question this by examining how different climate city networks relate and function as interconnected, yet independent, decision-making centers. We explore the extent to which this polycentric system overcomes the assumed exclusivity and inequality of these networks. We analyze twenty-two climate city networks using qualitative comparative analysis to classify the networks with a majority of members from either the Global North or the Global South based on conditions related to their context, diversity of members, and degree of homogeneity. We find that climate city networks overcome North–South dependencies through targeted support reflecting the local needs and conditions of city members. This diversity of tailored alternatives for cities provides equality and inclusivity at the polycentric system level, despite showing inequality and exclusivity at the network level.
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This paper describes how urban resilience governance is structured and coordinated in 20 North American cities (19 US and one Canadian) based on interviews with city officials. This co-produced research evolved out of conversations with city officials in Portland, Oregon, who were interested to learn how other cities were organising resilience work. Interviews focused on emerging definitions, organisational structures, internal and external coordination efforts, and practitioners’ insights. The paper includes a descriptive summary of how cities are structuring and coordinating resilience efforts. Additionally, we discuss how current trends in resilience coordination can inform future directions for urban resilience scholarship. We compare what practitioners view as key success factors against six commonly theorised characteristics for effective resilience governance. Overall, we find considerable overlap in lessons from theory and practice, including the benefits of a systems approach, the need for a clear definition of resilience, strong leadership, and stakeholder engagement. Practitioners use resilience to diagnose the overall health of their cities. Additionally, practice tends to emphasise limitations such as political turnover, trade-offs between centralised and dispersed organisation, and the need to carefully diagnose and scope resilience work, whereas the academic literature calls for multi-level and cross-scale governance and feedbacks and more transformative action. Given these insights, we highlight opportunities for new resilience scholarship, including analysing the benefits of the diagnostic phase of resilience planning, evaluating resilience goals to determine the best departmental fit, and understanding local barriers and trade-offs to adopting a broad systems approach.
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Cities are key in climate mitigation and adaptation, and they have developed into sites of innovative urban climate governance that can spur on climate action. Building on this development, a rich scholarship (within earth system governance and beyond) is now available that seeks to understand the development and performance of urban climate governance around the world. This article systematically reviews a decade of urban climate governance scholarship (building on 260 publications from 2009 to 2018). It is informed in this by four research challenges that were identified by leading scholars of urban climate governance a decade ago. The article seeks to understand how much progress has been made in the literature during this decade, and to identify the key research challenges for the critical decade that lies ahead of us.
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Reduction of carbon emissions and climate-resilience in cities are becoming important objectives to be achieved in order to ensure sustainable urban development pathways. Traditionally, cities have treated climate mitigation and adaptation strategies in isolation, without addressing their potential synergies, conflicts or trade-offs. Recent studies have shown that this can lead to inefficiencies in urban planning, conflicting policy objectives and lost opportunities for synergistic actions. However, in the last few years, we have observed that cities are increasingly moving towards addressing both mitigation and adaptation in urban planning. Cities need to pay particular attention and understand the rationale of both policy objectives whilst considering the integration of the two policies in urban planning and decision-making. This study presents an analytical framework to evaluate the level of integration of climate mitigation and adaptation in cities' local climate action plans. We tested this framework in nine selected major cities, representatives from all inhabited continents, which are frontrunners in climate action both in their regions and globally. We applied the framework in order to evaluate the level of mitigation and adaptation integration in cities' CCAPs and further explored the different types of mitigation-adaptation interrelationships that have been considered. A scoring system was also devised in order to allow comparing and ranking of the different CCAPs for their level of integration of adaptation and mitigation. The paper draws good practices to support cities in developing climate change action plans in an integrated way. Climatic Change
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Over the past decade, diverse urban governance innovations and experiments have emerged with the declared aim to foster climate change mitigation and adaptation, involving actors at multiple levels and scales. This urban turn in environmental governance has been accompanied by normative claims and high expectations regarding a leading role of cities in coping with climate change. However, while time pressures for effective action are growing, little is known about the social learning processes involved in such urban climate governance innovations, and what they actually contribute to achieve the required transformations in urban systems. Therefore, this special issue presents eight selected papers that explore learning in urban climate governance practices in a variety of local, national and international contexts. Their findings point to a more ambiguous role of these practices as they tend to support incremental adjustments rather than deeper social learning for radical systemic change. Against this backdrop we propose a heuristic distinguishing basic modes and sources in governance learning that aims to facilitate future empirical research and comparison, thus filling a critical theory gap. Using this framework for interpretation illustrates that urban climate governance learning urgently requires more openness, parallel processes, exogenous sources, as well as novel meta-learning practices.
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The challenge of making cities more sustainable is one of the major constraints that has to be addressed at all political levels. Many innovative planning solutions are now underway in various European cities of any scale. One way of making the transition to low-carbon cities happen is the approach of replicating successful demonstration projects. During several years of participatory observation in European projects and municipal consultancy as well as through qualitative interviews with municipal technical staff working on climate change, we observed that replication is seen by the European Commission as well as national governments as a major solution for speeding up the transition EU wide. The Research includes an evaluation of already funded EU projects using a replication approach. It is commonplace that replication is not likely to happen 1:1, because each city has its own challenges. Nonetheless, the process behind replication attempts leads to considerable learning effects. We found out that learning from good examples serves several purposes for managing the transition, e.g. inspiration and Motivation of technical staff, mobilisation of stakeholders or political commitment. The paper concludes with an analysis of success factors and barriers for replication drawing on real life examples. The findings recommend making supporting schemes more effective by evolving the concept of unstructured replication towards a mentoring approach based on scientific steering.
Technical Report
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This report investigates the presence of particular adaptive co-management and network governance components in an inter-organisational network, the Southern Grampians Glenelg Primary Care Partnership (SGGPCP) in South West Victoria. Primary Care Partnerships (PCPs) are networks of local health and human service providers that work together on improving community access to services and continuity of care. PCPs and similar types of networks can play a key role in disaster risk management at community level, as they have access to a diverse range of community-level actors, who themselves play critical roles in disaster preparedness, response and recovery. The SGGPCP is one of 28 PCPs in Victoria and includes 20 member agencies across the Southern Grampians and Glenelg Shires in South West Victoria. Partner agencies include local government, large and small rural health services, community service organisations, disability providers, mental health services, neighbourhood houses, bush nursing centres, and aboriginal health services.
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Hosting mega-events can not only catalyse urban development, but also lead to an improvement of local planning systems and building planning capacity. Events can create knowledge transfer from one city to another, and be used as tools for experimenting new prototypes and urban templates but on a smaller scale. Within this context, this research aims at identifying strategies for leveraging mega-events to improve local planning capacity. Relevant best practices in the use of events as planning enhancers are derived from the literature, and then applied to a case study, the city of Doha. In fact, the capital of Qatar has all the characteristics for benefiting from events. Firstly, it is a city that has already and will host in the imminent future many international events. Secondly, Doha is managing with difficulties its rapid urban development, and needs to improve its planning system. Results show there is a potential for benefiting from events in two ways: they can assist knowledge transfer from international consultancy to local agencies, and vice versa. In addition, events can act as the glue for overcoming the fragmentation of Doha’s planning system, by facilitating the implementation of 2030 Qatar National Vision, the country’s comprehensive blueprint.
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An increasing body of literature explores the role of transnational municipal networks (TMNs) in governing sustainable development. As associations, one key task of TMNs is to represent their members through production and dissemination of information and knowledge concerning municipal action for sustainable development. Case studies, often emphasising best practice, are used by many TMNs to fulfil this task. Nevertheless, despite strong scrutiny concerning the use of case studies in “policy mobilities” research, there have been limited attempts to quantify the ways in which TMNs present and disseminate case studies and, by doing so, generate trends of presence and absence in literature on sustainable development. Assessing patterns of representation for continents, countries, municipalities and themes across nine international case study collections published by ICLEI - Local Governments for Sustainability since 1991, this study responds to this research gap and identifies the presence of “usual suspects” in the ICLEI case study collections, along with notable absentees. By doing so, the study contributes to policy mobilities research and literature on TMNs, by encouraging reflection and further research concerning the representation patterns influencing which municipalities and what topics are presented in discourses on sustainable development.
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This article draws on Kingdon's Multiple Streams Approach (MSA) to consider international, not just domestic, flows of policy. It is argued that using the MSA in conjunction with international policy transfer and mobility theories allows for a fuller explanation of the development of smart electricity metering policy in Australia. The MSA is based originally on empirical research within a single country – the USA – in the late 1970s, and all three of the ‘streams’ identified as important to policy change – problems, politics and policy – are conceptualized as domestic. While recent scholarship has broadened the application of the MSA beyond nation state boundaries, it is argued that there is scope to further develop such ideas. In particular, the notion of policy mobility is introduced to capture issues about the globalization of policy, the role of non-state actors and the material substance of policy.
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Despite the proliferation and promise of subnational climate initiatives, the institutional architecture of transnational municipal networks (TMNs) is not well understood. With a view to close this research gap, the article empirically assesses the assumption that TMNs are a viable substitute for ambitious international action under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). It addresses the aggregate phenomenon in terms of geographical distribution, central players, mitigation ambition and monitoring provisions. Examining thirteen networks, it finds that membership in TMNs is skewed toward Europe and North America while countries from the Global South are underrepresented; that only a minority of networks commit to quantified emission reductions and that these are not more ambitious than Parties to the UNFCCC; and finally that the monitoring provisions are fairly limited. In sum, the article shows that transnational municipal networks are not (yet) the representative, ambitious and transparent player they are thought to be.
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As a measure to counteract the effects of urban sprawl, with the continued growth of cities worldwide, different modes of urban greening are being increasingly recognized. This special issue addresses current developments in the transition to low carbon cities employing a variety of urban greening techniques. The special issue consists of 10 papers, including four review papers on the topics of biophilic architecture; environmental versus marketable aesthetics; urban agriculture; and the rationale for mainstreaming. It also contains several original research articles, some (about half of the special issue) presenting case studies, as for green redevelopment in Trenton, USA; facade greening in Genoa, Italy; climatic effects (on air temperature) in Rosario, Argentina; a modeling study for Melbourne, Australia; and another Australian case study on the greening and “un”greening of Adelaide. In addition to a broadly scoped paper that examines American stormwater management, the special issue also contains an editorial on technologies for wastewater treatment. Together, these papers constitute a contribution to recognize the importance of retaining greenery in cities chiefly, although not solely, as a countermeasure to urban sprawl and its environmental impacts. Urban greening here represents a cost-effective (soft) approach that is an effective tool as part of sustainable development.
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Climate change, urbanization and water pollution cause adverse effects and rehabilitation costs that may exceed the carrying capacity of cities. Currently, there is no internationally standardized indicator framework for urban Integrated Water Resources Management (IWRM). The City Blueprint® is a first attempt and aims to enhance the transition towards water-wise cities by city-to-city learning. This paper provides a three step revision of the City Blueprint Framework (CBF) based on data of 45 municipalities and regions in 27 countries: (1) A distinction has been made between trends and pressures (on which urban IWRM has a negligible influence) and IWRM performances. Therefore, a separate trends and pressures framework has been developed; (2) Only the purely performance-oriented indicators have been selected from the CBF. Furthermore, the indicator accuracy and boundaries have been re-assessed, and new indicators have been added; (3) By analyzing correlations and variances, the performance-oriented indicators have been rearranged in order to establish a proportional contribution of all indicators and categories to the overall score, i.e., the Blue City Index®. In conclusion, six indicators have been removed because of insufficient accuracy, overlap or lack of focus on IWRM. Seven indicators have been added, i.e., secondary and tertiary wastewater treatment, operation cost recovery, green space and three indicators concerning solid waste treatment. The geometric aggregation method has been selected because it emphasizes the need to improve the lowest scoring indicators. In conclusion, the improved CBF is more performance-oriented and therefore more suitable to assist cities in their transition towards water-wise cities.
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Cities are key actors in addressing climate change. Through local policies and regulation, participation in national programmes, and membership in transnational networks, cities have been shown to play an important role in the new configurations of climate change governance beyond the nation-state. There has so far been little attention, however, on how cities in the global South fit into this agenda and how climate policies become integrated and transformed in local municipalities with varying levels of development and differing urban priorities. This paper addresses this gap by bringing together literatures on cities and climate change with urban policy mobilities to explore how mobile urban climate policies are understood and embedded within municipal governments of second-tier cities in India. Based on the empirical work in five municipalities, this paper shows how a municipal network seeks to make climate policies mobile and how local municipal governments engage with such mobile policies. I suggest that the Indian example indicates different mechanisms of policy mobility than those identified in the literature elsewhere including a different use of policy spaces locally and nationally, strategic use of shifting policy narratives across scales to access global circulations of climate policies, and an important role for the precursors of mobility such as linkages, funding and awareness.
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Chapter
Transnational municipal networks (TMNs) have emerged as important actors in the global response to climate change. Environmentalists both within and out- side governments have placed great expectations and hopes on these networks (Betsill & Bulkeley, 2007; Valente de Macedo, Setzer, & Rei, 2016). Through their novel form of agency, TMNs are expected to provide cities with a form of ‘extra-legem’ empowerment in their responses to climate change (Chapter 1 by van der Heijden, Bulkeley, & Certomà in this edited volume). This empowerment is expected to work by linking the international with the local level, which will eventually allow cities to break out of national positions on climate change, overcome local obstacles to the mitigation of climate change, and initiate adaptation policies (Acuto, 2013).
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This study examines the network structure of policy learning in the C40 Cities Climate Leadership Group, which is a network of the world’s largest cities committed to tackling climate change issues. Among forty members and nineteen affiliate members, we ask the question with whom do cities learn and why? How are policy-learning relationships associated with cities’ multi-stakeholder governing body, policy performance, and cultural similarities? While studies on learning have analyzed conditions facilitating learning, quantitative studies of local government learning in global networks are rare. To facilitate the investigation into learning, we conceptualize learning as a process comprising information seeking, adoption and policy change, and focus on information seeking as the foundation step in the learning process. This social network analysis using the exponential random graph model reveals the cities that seek information and those that are information sources are different subgroups. Furthermore, analysis of nodal attributes suggests that transmunicipal learning in the C40 network is facilitated by the presence of a multi-stakeholder governing body; homophily of culture (language and regional proximity); and higher level of climate change policy performance. Creating a multi-stakeholder governing body could ensure participatory representativeness from citizens and relevant stakeholders to enhance climate change policy engagement and decision making as well as policy learning.
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This article proposes an agenda for research into the spatial, social, and relational character of globally circulating urban policies, policy models, and policy knowledge. It draws on geographical political economy literatures that analyze particular social processes in terms of wider sociospatial contexts, in part by maintaining a focus on the dialectics of fixity and flow. The article combines this perspective with poststructuralist arguments about the analytical benefits of close studies of the embodied practices, representations, and expertise through which policy knowledge is mobilized. I suggest that the notion of mobilities offers a useful rubric under which to operationalize this approach to the “local globalness” of urban policy transfer. The utility of this research approach is illustrated by the example of Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, a city that is frequently referenced by policymakers elsewhere as they look for “hot” policy ideas. The case also indicates that there is much research yet to be done on the character and implications of interurban policy transfer. Specifically, I argue that, while maintaining a focus on wider forces, studies of urban policy mobilities must take seriously the role that apparently banal activities of individual policy transfer agents play in the travels of policy models and must also engage in fine-grained qualitative studies of how policies are carried from place to place, learned in specific settings, and changed as they move. The final section offers theoretical and methodological questions and considerations that can frame future research into how, why, and with what consequences urban policies are mobilized globally.
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Numerous European programs and initiatives have been instrumental in identifying a large and increasing number of examples of best practice (or good practice) in the field of spatial planning. In fact, there is now a profligacy of best practice, which means that many researchers and policy-makers are often confronted with too much information when trying to identify examples of policy and practice in other places. The identification and dissemination of best practices has become a growing industry in many areas of European policy, including spatial planning and urban environmental issues. In many cases, an underlying assumption of best practices is that they are equally applicable and effective in another setting, and that the development and dissemination of best practice will help to lead to improvements in policy and practice in other countries, regions or cities. However, the reality is that best practices have a more limited role in policy-making processes: other influences are frequently more important. The value of exchanging European best practices is limited since there are huge differences in the economic, political or social situation between countries in the European Union. This is particularly true when considering the transfer of best practices between ‘new’ and ‘old’ member states, where the social and economic situation, as well as the institutional frameworks, are often very different in ‘borrowing’ and ‘lending’ countries.
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It is widely recopnized that many different opes and forms of knowledge contribute to technology development. Formal codified knowledge, tacit knowledge, informal knowledge and cultural knowledge have all recently been addressed. However, one other particular form of knowledge—the contribution of knowledge/information embodied in the working context—has not been directly or explicitly addressed to the same extent. Tet this form of knowledge—‘contingent knowledge’—it is argued, plays a crucial but under-appreciated role in technology development and innovation. In this paper, the concept of contingent knowledge is further explicated and illustrated by means of examples, and the strategic and practical implications are drawn out.
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Introducing the special issue on “Mobilizing policy,” the paper contrasts orthodox approaches to policy transfer with an emerging body of work in the interdisciplinary field critical policy studies. The governing metaphors in this latter body of work are those of mobility and mutation (rather than transfer, transit, and transaction), policymaking dynamics being conceived in terms of reproduction across and between sites of innovation/emulation (rather than interjurisdictional replication). Distinctive contributions of the following collection of papers are highlighted in the context of an emergent “policy mobilities” approach.
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Regional and global city-to-city (C2C) relationships have experienced recent increases in numbers and activities. Research into the perceived benefits of and key elements that make C2C relationships successful have been lacking. This paper reviews Asian C2C cooperation and analyses how urban managers perceive this modality in terms of the key elements for success and the functional areas it is best used. The analysis is based upon a survey of local governments in Asian countries. The findings suggest that governments consider four features critical to successful C2C collaboration including: free flows of information, reciprocity, understanding and leadership. At the same time, local governmental decision makers did not see community participation as an important element in C2C success. In terms of areas where C2C is most applicable, local governments in Asia identified the areas of environment, health and education and cultural issues. Urban infrastructure also received support. Asian managers, however, found C2C cooperation less applicable in the areas of gender empowerment and poverty reduction, housing and shelter, municipal finance and economic development. Results were somewhat mixed for security and disaster management. These results suggest that C2C has important, but limited usefulness in a region where community participation in increasingly seen as vital to good governance and poverty reduction, gender and economic development are high priority areas.
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Studies of the urban governance of climate change have proliferated over the past decade, as municipalities across the world increasingly place the issue on their agendas and private actors seek to respond to the issue. This review examines the history and development of urban climate governance, the policies and measures that have been put into place, the multilevel governance context in which these are undertaken, and the factors that have structured the posibilities for addressing the issue. It highlights the limits of existing work and the need for future research to provide more comprehensive analyses of the achievements and limitations of urban climate governance. It calls for engagement with alternative theoretical perspectives to understand how climate change is being governed in the city and the implications for urban governance, socioenvironmental justice, and the reconfiguration of political authority.