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The Evolution of Sweden's Urban Sustainability Marketing Tool: A Comparative Study of Two Major International Events
Linköping University, Department of Management and Engineering, Environmental Technology and Management. Linköping University, Faculty of Science & Engineering.
2016 (English)In: The Journal of urban technology, ISSN 1063-0732, E-ISSN 1466-1853Article in journal (Refereed) Epub ahead of print
Abstract [en]

In this article, some of the obstacles for translating urban imaginaries and urban sustainability concepts based on technological interventions are analyzed. This analysis is built on experiences from the World Urban Forum 7 in Medellín, Colombia held in April 2014 and uses previous attempts to explore the production of imaginaries at play in the performance of SymbioCity, an urban development concept with a symbiosis tint created by the Swedish Trade Council. Through documenting the role of physical and non-physical messages from the Swedish delegation and its exhibition, along with numerous interviews with key actors at the conference and from the city's administration, an analysis of the current strategies used to promote the tool is provided. The claim that induced idealized urban futures sap energy and result in poor achievement of the goals is used to suggest that context and current conditions influence the ability to understand and adopt technological solutions. The conclusions are centered on the fact that SymbioCity, for the most part, is trying to sell products or services that are difficult to see and understand from the perspective of cities-customers, since most of these consist of invisible (i.e., energy), or hidden loops (i.e., waste and water). It is argued that there are contextual and historical conditions that are crucial for the decision to implement them that are, at least implicitly, expressed by the targeted cities-customers, and that the SymbioCity concept, or at least the way it is communicated in these fora, has undergone a change, in the sense that it has become more flexible and allowed for bottom-up considerations to enter the discourse.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Taylor & Francis, 2016.
National Category
Environmental Analysis and Construction Information Technology
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-127483DOI: 10.1080/10630732.2015.1102422OAI: diva2:924162
Available from: 2016-04-28 Created: 2016-04-28 Last updated: 2016-05-03

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The full text will be freely available from 2017-10-25 07:46
Available from 2017-10-25 07:46

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Mejía-Dugand, Santiago
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Environmental Technology and ManagementFaculty of Science & Engineering
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