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den Exter R.,Environmental Policy Group | Lenhart J.,Environmental Policy Group | Kern K.,Leibniz Institute for Regional Development and Structural Planning IRS | Kern K.,University of Potsdam
Local Environment | Year: 2015

Although Dutch cities were among the forerunners in local climate policy, a systematic overview on climate mitigation and adaptation policy is still missing. This study aims to fill this gap by analysing 25 Dutch cities using indicators for the level of anchoring in policy, organisation and practical implementation as well as multi-level relations. Since Tilburg, Amsterdam, Den Haag and Rotterdam show a higher performance than other Dutch cities, these four cities are used as reference cities. The findings suggest that structural integration of climate mitigation and adaptation is limited in Dutch cities. The study points at three recent trends in local climate governance in the Netherlands: (i) decentralisation within municipal organisations, (ii) externalisation initiatives that place climate policy outside the municipal organisation and (iii) regionalisation with neighbouring municipalities and the provincial government. © 2014 Taylor & Francis.

Gailing L.,Leibniz Institute for Regional Development and Structural Planning IRS | Leibenath M.,Leibniz Institute of Ecological Urban and Regional Development
Landscape Research | Year: 2015

There is growing interest amongst landscape researchers on social constructivist perspectives on landscapes. This paper discusses two ways of conceptualising the social construction of landscapes: historical institutionalism and post-structuralist discourse theory. The aim is to explore the opportunities that both approaches offer, and to assess their strengths and limitations. Drawing on two local case studies from Germany, we illuminate the ontologies of landscape implied by the two theoretical lenses, how they conceive of the social construction of landscapes, and finally the ways in which they can inform political processes. Both approaches apply an anti-essentialist agenda, though in different ways. Whereas in historical institutionalism materiality is treated as separated from the social sphere, in post-structuralist discourse theory material objects, practices, subjects and linguistic utterances are all part of relational systems of meaning called discourse. Both approaches can contribute to a more democratic and pluralistic practice of landscape planning and policy-making. ©2013,Landscape Research Group Ltd.

Moss T.,Leibniz Institute for Regional Development and Structural Planning IRS
Urban Studies | Year: 2014

This paper reconstructs the trajectory of energy efficiency policies in Berlin from the 1920s to today in order to illustrate how the shifting political and socioeconomic conditions of a city can shape urban energy provision and consumption. Taking a long-term perspective on the relationship between urban transitions and energy policy, it investigates how the geo-political turbulence, regime diversity and socioeconomic volatility experienced by 20th-century Berlin influenced strategies of electricity generation and use in the city. Drawing on different ways of conceptualising change to socio-technical systems in the literature, the paper's findings present a more differentiated picture of urban energy transitions than notions of path dependency and transition pathways imply, highlighting the importance of non-linear trends, political contestation and crisis discourses in and beyond the city and their relevance for reconfiguring urban energy systems today. © 2013 Urban Studies Journal Limited.

Lee F.,University of Hong Kong | Moss T.,Leibniz Institute for Regional Development and Structural Planning IRS
International Journal of River Basin Management | Year: 2014

The aim of this paper is to explore how classic upstream–downstream conflicts of water resources management can be interpreted more broadly in terms of spatial misfits and disparities between the river basin, territorial jurisdictions, degrees of political influence and socio-economic conditions. It applies the analytical concept of spatial fit in order to explore issues of governance in managing water in the Dongjiang River basin, selected by virtue of the huge political and economic asymmetries existing between the upstream Jiangxi Province and the downstream Pearl River delta region. Using the concept of spatial fit, the paper explores the complex environmental, socio-economic and political geographies which frame the interdependencies of water use and management within the river basin. It analyses attempts by stakeholders at different levels and locations in the basin to advance their own water-related interests and the initiatives that some are developing to share benefits and costs more equitably across the basin. © 2014, © 2014 International Association for Hydro-Environment Engineering and Research.

Moss T.,Leibniz Institute for Regional Development and Structural Planning IRS | Newig J.,Luneburg University
Environmental Management | Year: 2010

Environmental governance and management are facing a multiplicity of challenges related to spatial scales and multiple levels of governance. Water management is a field particularly sensitive to issues of scale because the hydrological system with its different scalar levels from small catchments to large river basins plays such a prominent role. It thus exemplifies fundamental issues and dilemmas of scale in modern environmental management and governance. In this introductory article to an Environmental Management special feature on "Multilevel Water Governance: Coping with Problems of Scale," we delineate our understanding of problems of scale and the dimensions of scalar politics that are central to water resource management. We provide an overview of the contributions to this special feature, concluding with a discussion of how scalar research can usefully challenge conventional wisdom on water resource management. We hope that this discussion of water governance stimulates a broader debate and inquiry relating to the scalar dimensions of environmental governance and management in general. © 2010 Springer Science+Business Media, LLC.

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