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Steering sustainability transitions? Modular participatory backcasting for strategic planning in the heating and cooling sector
KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Sustainable development, Environmental science and Engineering, Resources, Energy and Infrastructure.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-8067-3787
2019 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)Alternative title
Styra omställningsprocesser för ökad hållbarhet? Modulär deltagande backcasting för strategisk planering inom värme och kyla (Swedish)
Abstract [en]

Fostering sustainability transitions in the heating and cooling sector is a necessary and urgent issue. Steering mechanisms can enable coordination of actions by different actors towards common sustainability goals. Previous studies have identified requirements relevant for such steering frameworks, but have not specifically addressed planning in the highly contextual heating and cooling sector. Participatory backcasting (PB) possesses a number of relevant characteristics for use as a planning framework in this sector, but its adaptability and potential impact first need to be addressed.

This thesis sought to advance strategic planning in the heating and cooling sector by improving the adaptability, transparency and reflexivity of PB processes and extending their impact beyond individuals directly involved, so-called social scales of impact. Key research objectives of the present work were to: (1) develop a strategic planning framework for the heating and cooling sector based on PB and examine its adaptability to local contexts, (2) develop methods for scenario development, selection and analysis to allow for co-informing between modelling and participatory processes within PB-based strategic planning, and (3) identify factors that could influence the social scales of the impact of participatory strategic planning processes.

Objectives 1 and 2 were pursued in a multiple case study involving transdisciplinary research over one-year PB-based planning processes in Bila Tserkva, Ukraine (Case I) and Niš, Serbia (Case II). The social scales of impact (Objective 3) were studied in a single case – a Swedish project aimed at advancing the practice of long-term planning in regions ‘Region 2050’ (Case III). In all cases, both theoretical and empirical research were conducted.

The study proposes a novel framework, modular participatory backcasting (mPB), for strategic planning in the heating and cooling sector. The framework integrates principles of modularity, participatory modelling, and transdisciplinarity. The results of mPB implementation in Case I and Case II suggest that the framework has acceptable adaptability to local contexts. Greater reflexivity and transparency in the scenario development, selection and analysis were achieved by developing a morphological method and implementation of participatory modelling approaches. Finally, boundary spanning individuals, collaborations and institutional plurality were identified in Case III as important factors for broadening the social scales of impact of participatory strategic planning processes.

Abstract [sv]

Det är både angeläget och brådskande att främja hållbara omställningsprocesser för värme och kyla inom energisektorn. Det finns olika styrmekanismer som kan möjliggöra samordning av olika aktörers insatser mot gemensamma hållbarhetsmål inom sektorn. Tidigare studier har identifierat relevanta krav för styrning av ett ramverk för detta, men de har då inte specifikt behandlat styrning inom värme och kyla. Deltagande backcasting (eng. participatory backcasting, PB) har ett antal relevanta egenskaper för att kunna användas som just ett sådant ramverk för planering inom området. Däremot behöver användning av PB i sektorn utvärderas med avseende på lokal anpassningsbarhet och användbarhet.

Den här avhandling syftar till att vidareutveckla strategisk planering för området värme och kyla genom att öka anpassningsbarheten, transparensen och reflixiviteten av PB-processer samt genom att utvidga ramverkets påverkan till ett vidare sammanhang (än de individer som är direkt berörda). De huvudsakliga forskningsmålen var att: (1) utveckla ett strategiskt ramverk för planering för området värme och kyla baserad på PB och att undersöka hur anpassningsbart ramverket är i förhållande till lokala förutsättningar; (2) utforska metoder för utveckling, urval och analys av scenarier som möjliggör informationsöverföring mellan modellering och deltagandeprocesser inom strategisk planering baserad på PB; och (3) identifiera faktorer som kan sprida påverkan bortom de individer som är direkt involverade i deltagandeprocesserna.

Mål 1 och 2 har behandlats i en flerfallstudie som omfattar tvärvetenskaplig forskning över ett års tid, PB-baserade planeringsprocesser i Bila Tserkva, Ukraina (Fall I) och Niš, Serbien (Fall II). De vidare effekterna av deltagandeprocesserna studerades i en fallstudie i Sverige där projektet syftade till att vidareutveckla praktiken för långsiktig planering i regioner, framsynsprocessen ”Region 2050” (Fall III). I samtliga fall kombinerades teoretisk och empirisk forskning.

Studien föreslår ett nytt ramverk, modulär deltagande backcasting (mPB), för strategisk planering inom värme och kyla. Ramverket integrerar principer för modularitet, deltagandemodellering och tvärvetenskaplighet. Implementering av modulär deltagande backcasting (mPB) visar godtagbar lokal anpassningsbarhet vid användning i både Fall I och Fall II. Genom utveckling av en morfologisk metod samt införandet av deltagande modelleringsprocesser uppnåddes en högre grad av reflexivitet och ökad transparens i de PB-baserade planeringsprocesserna för scenarioutveckling, scenariourval och scenarioanalys. Slutligen identifierades faktorer som gränsgöverskidare (eng. boundary spanning individuals), samarbeten och institutionell mångfald som viktiga för att bredda PB-processens effekter i ett vidare sammanhang.

Abstract [uk]

Сприяння переходу до сталого розвитку в сфері тепло- та холодозабезпечення населених пунктів є однією з нагальних потреб в енергетиці. Тоді як досягнення цілей сталого розвитку (англ. Sustainable Development Goals) потребує координації та взаємодії різних акторів. Попередні дослідження визначили ключові вимоги, яким мають відповідати координаційні механізми в інфраструктурних секторах. В той же час, такі механізми та зокрема стратегічне планування в сфері тепло- та холодозабезпечення, яка суттєво залежить від умов функціонування, залишаються мало розробленими. Беккастинг із залученням всіх зацікавлених акторів (англ. participatory backcasting, PB) вирізняється низкою характеристик, що роблять його цікавим для вивчення в контексті довгострокового планування в цій сфері.

Дане дослідження присвячене вдосконаленню стратегічного планування в сфері тепло- та холодозабезпечення шляхом підвищення адаптивності, прозорості та рефлексивності процесів на основі PB. Дослідження передбачає вивчення наступних задач: (1) розроблення підходу до стратегічного планування в сфері тепло- та холодозабезпечення на основі PB та вивчення його адаптивності до локальних умов, (2) розроблення методів для побудови, вибору та аналізу сценаріїв, які б дозволяли взаємне інформування між моделюванням та процесами планування на основі PB, та (3) визначення факторів, які можуть посилити вплив процесів стратегічного планування на трансформації на рівні організацій та всієї системи.

Вивчення задач (1) і (2) було реалізовано як трансдисциплінарне дослідження двох кейсів – процесів стратегічного планування тривалістю один рік кожен в містах Біла Церква, Україна (Кейс I) та Ніш, Сербія (Кейс II). Дослідження задачі (3) базувалося на проекті  “Region 2050”, який мав на меті вдосконалення підходів до стратегічного планування в регіонах Швеції (Кейс III).

На основі результатів дослідження, запропоновано новий підхід до стратегічного планування в сфері тепло- та холодозабезпечення – модульний беккастинг (англ. modular participatory backcasting, mPB). Цей підхід було розроблено з використанням принципів модулярності, участі різних акторів у моделюванні та принципу трансдисциплінарності. Тестування mPB у двох кейсах (Кейси I та II) продемонструвало прийнятну адаптивність підходу до локальних умов та обмежень проектів. Розроблені методи для побудови та аналізу сценаріїв — морфологічний метод та метод моделювання за участі акторів, підвищили прозорість та рефлексивність розробки сценаріїв, а також збільшили кількість розглянутих альтернатив. В рамках Кейсу III було визначено, що (а) роль осіб як посередників між різними контекстами (англ. boundary spanning individuals), (б) співпраця та (в) інституційний плюралізм є важливими факторами для посилення впливу процесів стратегічного планування

Abstract [sr]

Podsticanje promena, koje doprinose poboljšanju održivosti sektora grejanja i hlađenja, je neophodan i neodložan zadatak. Različitim mehanizmima upravljanja može se uspostaviti koordinacija akcija različitih aktera u cilju ispunjenja zajedničkog cilja. Prethodne studije i radovi identifikovali su zahteve koje treba da ispune sistemi upravljanja, ali se nisu bavili planiranjem u specifičnom kontekstu sektora grejanja i hlađenja. Participativni bekkasting (engl. participatory backcasting, PB) metoda planiranja bi u toku procesa planiranja uzela u obzir brojne uticajne činioce i karakeristike vezane za ovaj sektor. Međutim, prvo se mora utvdtiti adaptibilnost i potencijalni uticaj primene ove metode.

Ova teza bavi se unapređenjem procesa strateškog planiranja u sektoru grejanja i hlađenja, koji je zasnovan na unapređenju adaptibilnosti, transparentnosti i refleksivnosti PB procesa i širenjem uticaja procesa, sa direknto uključenih pojedinace na širu društvenu zajednicu. Osnovni ciljevi istraživanja bili su: (1) da se razvije strateški okvir za planiranje u sektoru grejanja i hlađenja zasnovan na PB i da se ispita njegova adaptibilnost na lokalne uslove, (2) da se razviju metode za razvoj, selekciju i analizu scenarija sa uspostaviljanjem razmene informacija između modeliranja i participativnog procesa, a koji se sprovode u okviru strateškog planiranja zasnovanog na PB i (3) da se identifikuju faktori koji mogu da imaju širi društveni uticaj indukovan procesom participativnog strateškog planiranja.

Ciljevi 1 i 2 obrađivani su u višestrukoj studiji slučaja koje je uključivalo transdisciplinarno istraživanje. Istraživanje je trajalo duže od godinu dana i obuhvatilo je proces planiranja zasnovan na PB na primeru Bele Crkve, Ukrajina (Slučaj I) i primeru Niša, Srbija (Slučaj II). Nivoi šireg društvenog uticaja (Cilj 3) su istraživani na primeru švedskog  projekta koji je imao za cilj unapređenje procesa dugoročnog planiranja u regionima, ‘Region 2050’ (Slučaj III). U svim analiziranim slučajevima teoretsko istraživanje je kombinovano sa empirijskim podacima.

Sprovedeno istraživanje predlaže novi okvir za strateško planiranje u sektoru grejanja i hlađenja, modularni participativni bekkasting (mPB). Predloženi okvir integriše principe modularnosti, participativnog modeliranja i transdisciplinarnosti. Rezultati ukazuju da mPB ima prihvatljivu adaptibilnost za primenu u Slučaju I i Slučaju II. Veća refleksivnost i transparentnost procesa razvoja scenarija, njihovog izbora i analize postignute su razvojem morfološke metode i primenom principa participativnog modeliranja. Konačno, uloga pojedinaca kao posrednika između različitih konteksta (engl. boundary spanning individuals), saradnja i institucionalni pluralizam su identifikovani u okviru Slučaja III kao važni faktori za širenje šireg društvenog uticaja kao rezultat procesa participativnog strateškog planiranja.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: KTH Royal Institute of Technology, 2019. , p. 71
Series
TRITA-ABE-DLT ; 198
Keywords [en]
Sustainability transitions, strategic planning, participatory backcasting, scenarios, modularity, participatory modelling, transdisciplinarity, organisational changes, heating and cooling sector
Keywords [sv]
Omställningsprocesser, strategisk planering, deltagande backcasting, modularitet, deltagandemodellering, tvärvetenskap, organisationsförändringar, uppvärmning och kylning
National Category
Energy Systems Environmental Management
Research subject
Industrial Ecology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-246119DOI: 10.30746/TRITA-ABE-DLT-198ISBN: 978-91-7873-125-1 (print)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kth-246119DiVA, id: diva2:1295944
Public defence
2019-04-12, F3, Lindstedtsvägen 26, Stockholm, 10:15 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Note

QC 20190314

Available from: 2019-03-15 Created: 2019-03-13 Last updated: 2019-04-24Bibliographically approved
List of papers
1. Modular participatory backcasting: A unifying framework for strategic planning in the heating sector
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Modular participatory backcasting: A unifying framework for strategic planning in the heating sector
2019 (English)In: Energy Policy, ISSN 0301-4215, E-ISSN 1873-6777, Vol. 124, p. 123-134Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

This study proposes a novel framework, modular participatory backcasting (mPB), for long-term planning in the heating sector. The mPB framework is based on participatory backcasting (PB) and integrates principles of modularity, participatory modelling, and transdisciplinarity. We discerned for mPB 13 modules that can be arranged according to the purpose and specifics of each planning process. The design of the mPB framework and its implementation are presented for the cases of participatory strategic planning processes to achieve sustainable heat provision by 2050 in a Ukrainian city (Bila Tserkva) and a Serbian city (Nis). The results show that mPB allows adaptability to local contexts and limitations through exclusion, augmentation, substitution, splitting and inverting properties of modularity; decreases the learning time for applying the framework in a novel context; increases the reproducibility and transparency of long-term energy planning processes; enables efficient integration of quantitative methods into the participatory process; and advances collaboration between academia and society. The proposed framework is beneficial for advancement of local planning and policy-making practices by creating strategies with a wider support of stakeholders. It could also be useful for further research through cross-case analysis.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Elsevier, 2019
Keywords
Long-term planning, Heating sector, Participatory backcasting, Modularity, Participatory modelling, Transdisciplinarity
National Category
Energy Systems
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-240696 (URN)10.1016/j.enpol.2018.09.027 (DOI)000453642600012 ()2-s2.0-85054469029 (Scopus ID)
Funder
EU, FP7, Seventh Framework Programme, 266587
Note

QC 20190109

Available from: 2019-01-09 Created: 2019-01-09 Last updated: 2019-03-13Bibliographically approved
2. Strategic planning for sustainable heating in cities: A morphological method for scenario development and selection
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Strategic planning for sustainable heating in cities: A morphological method for scenario development and selection
2017 (English)In: Applied Energy, ISSN 0306-2619, E-ISSN 1872-9118, Vol. 186, no Part 2, p. 1115-1125Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The transition to more sustainable heating systems requires socio-technical approaches to strategic planning. Scenario development plays a key role in strategic planning, as the process supports the development of future visions and actions required for their realisation. However, new approaches to scenario development are required to address the limitations of conventional scenario development methods, such as the cognitive barriers of ‘groupthink’, reluctance to consider ‘outside-the-box’ options, handling of complexity, and ad hoc scenario selection and general non-transparency of scenario development processes. This paper describes the development and implementation of a novel method for scenario development and selection in the context of participatory strategic planning for sustainable heating in cities. The method is based on the morphological approach and a number of scenario criteria including transparency,reliabilitycoveragecompletenessrelevance/densitycreativityinterpretabilityconsistencydifferentiation and plausibility. It integrates creativity workshops and interdisciplinary stakeholder participation to enhance the ownership and legitimacy of the scenarios. The approach entails the generation of a complete space of scenarios for heating systems and reduction of this space using cross-consistency analysis and project-specific requirements. Iterative development and implementation of the method is illustrated using two participatory backcasting projects focused on strategic planning for providing a comfortable indoor climate for Bila Tserkva, Ukraine, and Niš, Serbia by the year 2030. The results demonstrate that the method helps overcome the limitations of conventional approaches to scenario development and supports rigorous and transparent selection of a scenario set for participatory analysis. The method fostered the elicitation of consensus-based scenarios for more sustainable heating systems in both cities with regard to the quality of indoor comfort, environmental impact, resource efficiency and energy security.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Elsevier, 2017
National Category
Energy Systems
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-191480 (URN)10.1016/j.apenergy.2016.07.008 (DOI)000390075400004 ()2-s2.0-84996939042 (Scopus ID)
Note

QC 20160914

Available from: 2016-08-31 Created: 2016-08-31 Last updated: 2019-03-13Bibliographically approved
3. Exploring scenarios for more sustainable heating: The case of Nis, Serbia
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Exploring scenarios for more sustainable heating: The case of Nis, Serbia
Show others...
2016 (English)In: Energy, ISSN 0360-5442, E-ISSN 1873-6785, Vol. 115, p. 1758-1770Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Sustainability transformation of the heating sector is recognised as being essential for reaching climate and environmental targets while improving the quality of life in cities worldwide. Participatory strategic planning enabled by scenario methods can be an important tool to guide this transformation, but methods for qualitative scenario analysis supporting stakeholder participation must be further developed and tested in the context of different cities. This paper presents results from integration of urban energy system modelling into the participatory strategic planning process implemented in the city of NE, which suffers problems typical of the heating sector in Serbia and the Western Balkans. The aim was to explore how the scenarios developed by local stakeholders could transform the NB heating system by 2030. Five scenarios developed within participatory backcasting project and a BAU scenario were analysed in terms of decarbonisation, energy security and energy efficiency using Long-range Energy Alternatives Planning System (LEAP). A final scenario "Efficiency for the green future" designed by the stakeholders for implementation in the city included high standards of energy efficiency in buildings, increased share of renewables in the heating energy mix, expanding the district heating system, deploying smart technologies and green architecture. The LEAP model demonstrated that this final scenario could lead to achievement of the desirable future vision developed by stakeholders for NB, through substantial improvements in energy efficiency and energy security, and to considerable emissions decreases by 2030 in comparison with the base year (2010) and the BAU scenario.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Elsevier, 2016
Keywords
Urban energy modelling, LEAP, Scenario, Participatory backcasting, Heating system, Nit
National Category
Energy Engineering
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-198883 (URN)10.1016/j.energy.2016.06.034 (DOI)000389104300024 ()2-s2.0-84996599646 (Scopus ID)
Conference
10th Conference on Sustainable Development of Energy, Water and Environment Systems (SDEWES), 2015, Dubrovnik, Croatia
Note

QC 20170103

Available from: 2017-01-03 Created: 2016-12-22 Last updated: 2019-03-13Bibliographically approved
4. Linking socio-technical transition studies and organisational change management: Steps towards an integrative, multi-scale heuristic
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Linking socio-technical transition studies and organisational change management: Steps towards an integrative, multi-scale heuristic
2019 (English)In: Journal of Cleaner Production, ISSN 0959-6526, E-ISSN 1879-1786, p. 359-368Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

While the role of agency is widely acknowledged in socio-technical transition research, there remains a research gap on agency in transitions and a call for studies using an actor-centred approach to transition studies. In response to this call, this paper addresses the role of actors and, particularly, organisations in transitions. It examines the role of organisational change in socio-technical sustainability transitions and, more specifically, how transition initiatives may trigger and support these changes in organisations and systems. For this purpose, the paper draws on literature from both transition studies and organisational change management (OCM) to build a multi-scale, integrative theoretical heuristic. This addresses drivers and barriers for organisational change as an integral part of transition processes, connecting the micro level of the individual, the meso level of the organisation and the macro level of the broader system in which the organisation is located. With the goal of illustrating the links between OCM and transition studies, this paper empirically examines the impact of Region 2050, a large, multi-organisation transition initiative in Sweden, in terms of creating change within the organisations involved. The main focus is on how the organisations acquire the new knowledge and capabilities required for improving regional planning for sustainability. The empirical study identifies leverage points at the micro-, meso- and macro-levels, which may be used in order to change strategic planning processes. Three different theoretical concepts from transition studies and OCM that could help to foster long-term planning are also identified: (1) the macro-level of institutional plurality and its connection to the meso- (organisational) level; (2) collaboration as a key success factor on the organisational level; and (3) at the micro-level, the roles of individuals as change agents and boundary spanners. Overall, the case highlights the merits of the OCM literature for transition studies and their emphasis on understanding interacting processes operating at multiple scales.

Keywords
sustainability transitions, organisations, change management, transition initiatives
National Category
Other Social Sciences
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-246171 (URN)10.1016/j.jclepro.2019.05.286 (DOI)000477784000033 ()2-s2.0-85067301897 (Scopus ID)
Funder
Swedish Research Council Formas, FR-2018/0010
Note

QC 20190318

Available from: 2019-03-14 Created: 2019-03-14 Last updated: 2019-08-20Bibliographically approved

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