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Green utopianism: perspectives, politics and micro-practices
Urban and Regional Studies, Royal Technical Institute, Stockholm, Sweden.
Linköping University, The Tema Institute, Department of Water and Environmental Studies. Linköping University, Faculty of Arts and Sciences.
2014 (English)Collection (editor) (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Utopian thought and experimental approaches to societal organization have been rare in the last decades of planning and politics. Instead, there is a widespread belief in ecological modernization, that sustainable societies can be created within the frame of the current global capitalist world order by taking small steps such as eco-labeling, urban densification, and recycling. However, in the context of the current crisis in which resource depletion, climate change, uneven development, and economic instability are seen as interlinked, this belief is increasingly being questioned and alternative developmental paths sought. This collection demonstrates how utopian thought can be used in a contemporary context, as critique and in exploring desired futures. The book includes theoretical perspectives on changing global socio-environmental relationships and political struggles for alternative development paths, and analyzes micro-level practices in co-housing, alternative energy provision, use of green space, transportation, co-production of urban space, peer-to-peer production and consumption, and alternative economies. It contributes research perspectives on contemporary green utopian practices and strategies, combining theoretical and empirical analyses to spark discussions of possible futures.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Routledge, 2014. , 290 p.
, Routledge Studies in Environment, Culture, and Society
Keyword [en]
Environmental Studies, Environment & the City, Environment & Society, Environment & Theory, Urban Sociology, Social Theory, Urban Geography
National Category
Social Sciences Interdisciplinary
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-106606ISBN: 978-0-415-81444-7 (hbk)ISBN: 978-1-135-07842-3 (e-book)OAI: diva2:717095


1. Utopian Thought in the Making of Green Futures Karin Bradley and Johan Hedrén

Part 1: The Politics of Science

2. Anthropocenic Politicization: From the Politics of the Environment to Politicizing Environments Erik Swyngedouw

3. A Feminist Project of Belonging for the Anthropocene J.K. Gibson-Graham

4. Utopianism in Science: The Case of Resilience Theory Johan Hedrén

5. Why Solar Panels Don’t Grow on Trees: Technological Utopianism and the Uneasy Relation Between Ecomarxism and Ecological Economics Alf Hornborg

Part 2: Transforming Politics and Planning

6. Politicizing Planning Through Multiple Images of the Future Ulrika Gunnarsson-Östling

7. Mobility Transitions: The Necessity of Utopian Approaches Karolina Isaksson

8. Utopian Desires and Institutional Change Meike Schalk

9. The Urban Park as "Paradise Contrived" Ylva Uggla

10. Globalism, Particularism and the Greening of Neoliberal Energy Landscapes Tom Mels

Part 3: Changing Practices

11. Towards a Peer Economy: How Open Source and Peer-to-Peer Architecture, Hardware, and Consumption Are Transforming the Economy Karin Bradley

12. Autonomous Urbanisms and the Right to the City: Squatting and the Production of the Urban Commons in Berlin Alexander Vasudevan

13. Utopianism in the Architecture of New Urbanism and Co-Housing Lucy Sargisson

14. Transition Delayed: The 1980s Ecotopia of a Decentralized Renewable Energy System Martin Hultman

15. R-URBAN: Strategies and Tactics for Participative Utopias and Resilient Practices Constantin Petcou and Doina Petrescu

Available from: 2014-05-14 Created: 2014-05-14 Last updated: 2014-09-15Bibliographically approved

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