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Individual Paper: Degrowth & Planning : the Södertälje Case

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The departure point for this paper is one of our Master theses conducted in 2017. Using the Doughnut diagram from Kate Raworth as a reference, this paper departs from a speculative scenario that explores and visualizes the concept of degrowth from a planning perspective in a Swedish context and taking as an example the municipality of Södertälje. In the scenario, degrowth is put forth as a counterresponse to the paradigm of endless economic growth and capitalism in order to achieve social and environmental goals and secure the Swedish society within the doughnut.

The scenario starts at the national scale to give a quick overview of the changes triggered by the degrowth agenda and then focuses on the case of Södertälje. At national level four new core values of the society are embraced: commonality, continuity, democracy and simplicity. These core values are considered as the founding elements for the remaking of the Swedish society thus implicating a revision of the national economy as well as policies. These, in turn, affect the way people live in general and the way space is allocated, organised and transformed. Then, in Södertälje, we further investigate and dissect the spatial implications of the degrowth future for the municipality: by mapping out how both top-down planning and bottom-up initiatives shape the urban fabric (e.g. new housing typologies, building repurposing, street reconfiguration, new urban functions, etc.). Finally, the findings are illustrated in four focus areas of particular relevance: the town centre, Scania’s industrial area, a suburban area and a rural area.

Ultimately, this paper has a twofold aim. On the one hand, it explores how degrowth can be integrated in urban planning by bringing forward a number of strategies that can be applied within. On the other hand, this paper contributes to the degrowth debate by showing the relevance of urban planning in shaping a degrowth future and by producing images that communicate degrowth-related visions and ideas so it can be perceived as a feasible and desirable path.

Info

Day: 2018-08-24
Start time: 11:30
Duration: 00:15
Room: ABF (Stora Salen)
Track: - Other - (fill submission note below)

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