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Urban Energy Landscapes


  • Date Published: April 2019
  • availability: In stock
  • format: Hardback
  • isbn: 9781108419420

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About the Authors
  • The urban energy transition represents a transformation of such magnitude that it will require a re-examination of the fundamental relationship between societies and energy resources. The potential for cities to deliver sustainable energy for their citizens requires context-specific action. One-size-fits-all approaches - which assume homogeneity across cities and economies of scale in the extension of electricity networks - have largely failed to deliver sustainable energy for all. This challenge is existential, questioning the fundamental ways in which contemporary life is organized around energy. This innovative volume argues that the urban energy transition depends on specific urban trajectories and heterogeneous urban energy landscapes, reflecting both strategic projects of urbanization and people's dwelling practices. Looking at in-depth case studies of urban energy landscapes in four major cities, it calls for citizens' active engagement with experimentation in everyday life. The book will have wide interdisciplinary appeal to researchers in energy, urban and environmental studies.

    • The book will have wide interdisciplinary appeal to both energy studies and urban studies researchers because of the increasing interaction between the two fields and it also brings together history, geography, and critical social theory
    • Uses detailed case studies that help consolidate methodologies and approaches and lead to a more developed understanding of concepts by the reader, while also engaging in practical aspects
    • Responds to real-world needs and - based on research and examples - presents a potential solution to a problem that concerns the large population of city dwellers
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    Reviews & endorsements

    'In this remarkable book of conceptual rigor, empirical breadth and methodological creativity, Castán Broto brings to life the situated practices and contextualized histories which - she convincingly argues - are so critical to understanding how urban energy transitions really happen.' Timothy Moss, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin

    'Urban Energy Landscapes provides a compelling framework and set of cases through which to encounter the global heterogeneity of infrastructures. Ranging from household interviews to contextualization of governance within long histories of colonization, Castán Broto expresses energy infrastructures as lively 'connective tissues', as symbols of modernity, and as emblematic of the aspirations of cityhood itself. The cases evidence multiple entry points through which to imagine energy transitions as well as the difficulty of theorizing across global urban experiences, defying any possibility for a unified theory or global political plan of action. Castán Broto's apprehensiveness at the scale of change required is alternated with auspicious gestures at sites where, sometimes, change is already deeply underway. Whether one reads this text cynically as a glimpse at the limitations of global action or hopefully as a glance at emergent alternatives, Urban Energy Landscapes provides a crucial intervention for its attention to the plurality of global urban infrastructures.' Mary Lawhon, University of Oklahoma

    “From charcoal fires in Maputo to Hong Kong's riot of neon light, Urban Energy Landscapes provides a conceptually sophisticated and empirically grounded street level view of the possibilities for radical transformation in urban energy landscapes. Through the lens of urban infrastructure and the looming realities of climate change, Castán Broto sheds new light on our understanding of what cities are and how they work in the daily lives of urban citizens.' Caroline Knowles, Goldsmiths, University of London

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    Product details

    • Date Published: April 2019
    • format: Hardback
    • isbn: 9781108419420
    • length: 252 pages
    • dimensions: 253 x 178 x 16 mm
    • weight: 0.66kg
    • contains: 19 b/w illus. 6 maps
    • availability: In stock
  • Table of Contents

    1. Introduction
    Part I. Understanding Urban Energy Landscapes:
    2. Energy transitions and urban infrastructure
    3. Urban energy landscapes as connective tissue
    4. Change and agency in landscapes of dwelling
    Part II. Heterogeneous Urban Energy Landscapes:
    5. Modernity promises and the quest for autonomy: urban energy landscapes in Maputo, Mozambique
    6. Continuous heterogeneity and private strategies for energy provision: urban energy landscapes in Bangalore, India
    7. When equal access to energy causes injustice: urban energy landscapes in Hong Kong, PR China
    8. Industrial legacy and governance through activism: urban energy landscapes in Concepción, Chile
    Part III. Change and Transformation in Urban Energy Landscapes:
    9. Exploring connective tissues through walking different urban energy landscapes
    10. Imagining urban energy futures

  • Author

    Vanesa Castán Broto, University of Sheffield
    Vanesa Castán Broto is an interdisciplinary researcher studying climate change governance and urban transitions. In 2016, she was awarded the Philip Leverhulme Prize for contributions to geography. In 2013, her project on Participatory Planning for Climate Change in Mozambique was recognized as a 'Lighthouse Activity for the Urban Poor' by the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. Castán Broto's recent books include An Urban Politics of Climate Change (with G. Edwards and H. Bulkeley, 2014) and Urban Sustainability Transitions (with N. Frantzeskaki, L. Coenen and D. Loorbach, 2017). Vanesa was a lead chapter author for UN-Habitat's World Cities Report 2016.

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