Workshop Confronting Manageability Paradigm/Cities

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Shinhaelee's summary

Summary of the session

1. Cities I - Aspects of Urban Environmental Management in Connection to Rapid Urbanization in the South, Alexandra, South Africa

- Aspects of urban environmental management in connection to rapid urbanization - housing informality and informal settlements - Alexandra Renewal Project: Integrated renewal of settlements against environmental degradation - Spatial inequality and tension between dominant informal and formal settlements - Urban Environmental Management in wider context - natural, built and socio-economic environments

2. Cities II - Construction in Dubai and Concerns about Environment, Dubai, United Arab Emirate

- Arabtec is established in 1975, 50,000 employees, benchmarking by civil engineering work such as tallest building in the world - ISO 14001 environmental policy-waste of energy - Dubai is an ultra-modern city in the middle of a desert, fastest growing economic hub in the world, governmental support, tax exemption, 1 million population, 70% of foreigners, cheap workers from India, water desalination to make green area, show effect - Artificial islands, construction affecting marine ecology(coral reefs, mangroves), resulting temperature and salinity increase - The majority of population from developing countries without education - Free allowance to use energy, no need to save energy, air conditioners, traffic and population - Contradiction between money economic growth solve/create environmental problem tourism, dream in the desert- future perspectives, local people, environmental cost

3. Cities III - The Concept of Regional Parks in Urban Agglomerations as an informal spatial planning tool, Germany

- Securing open spaces against development pressure - Integration of multi-functional use such as recreation, agriculture and nature conservation - Regional park projects designed by local participants in cooperative manner - bottom-up approach - Regional park Rhein-main: connection of green spaces - Regional park Berlin-Brandenburg - Regional park Saaramnd Emscher Landschaftspark: former mining sites renewed as jungle in the city, new concept of wilderness initiated by IBA (landscape architecture)

4. Suggested Discussion Points

"Which actors make decisions?" "Which goals are pursued?" "Safety&environmental quality as a question of affordability?" "Theoretical plans/material constraints" "more money, less problems?" "more money, more problems?" where might the money come from? what function does env. labelling (ISO, EMS) have? possibility to "prove away" from adverse conditions? priorities grow now/protect later? incentive to "manage" the environment? how effective informal EM tools?

Theoretical question: "how to connect environment and general problems: safety, violence etc? which are problems and who perceives them as problem?"

- "Is tapping electricity connection related to other environmental problems which government has to pay?" - because of danger to fire - "Concerning about structure, what is dominant problem?" - can be changed.

5. Discussion

- capitalism cannot be green. - companies externalize environmental costs, such as key issue: energy cost - competition is big barrier for environmentally sustainable development. - Urban planning in Dubai to develop as soon as possible, environmental protection later - Is there natural conservation value in the desert? - 'society + market = capitalist market society', where all are producers and consumers - environmental planning is for the system of state authority, which controls people for that - palm tree million dollar project have water problem, bypass the environment. - Dubai reminds us The tower of Babel, which was an ambitious unfinished construction project by arrogant people. - the cultural, psychological atmosphere in Near Eastern countries- a city from the desert - education of people important about saving energy, go walking

- city development carries the needs of whom? - depends on size of the city, number of people who make decision - money in Dubai does not belong to the government but investors. - Development in China causes freshwater problem. - Better lack of money? - solving problem leads to another problem due to the limited budget - objective of city planning: make the city work - 2 kinds of people: rich/poor - decisions made not by people, but by condition of structure which are occupied - EM for company for more profit? fame?

- In spite of relatively better environmental quality/affordability in Germany, there is still problem of degradation - Germany = good management, but nothing against mining - tool of compensation in city planning - similarities between 2 countries in suprastructure, are they related to EM?

- 'house is a right for everyone.' is policy in South Africa - purpose of EM from examples of cities - eco-image in capitalistic society - to make money - generalizable? compensation over profit - externalized gain=others pay, profit-maximization - less green - internalizing cost = greening, not possible for the whole thing - but examples in tourism motivate cleaning street - eco is fun, walking would be fun, small organic grow

--Shinhaelee 01:34, 28 January 2008 (UTC)

Ingmar's notes

Some aspects which I found interesting were these:

  • Beliefs or Discourses: why does Arabtec think that (imagined others) care about environmental issues?
  • Standards: who is defining them? what is seen as "normal"? As well as: how are problems defined, by whom?
    • Who believes that wire-tapping is a problem? why, how is that idea maintained?
  • Conflicts: i.e. some people cannot afford to maintain a household in areas with expensive environmental "quality". Henri Lefebvre might be helpful to theorise this.
  • Alienation: Susi used this concept and suggested that people are alienated from nature. What does that mean?

I like to quote Sebastian "you can't really bypass the environment".