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‘We cannot be at the forefront, changing society’: exploring how Swedish property developers respond to climate change in urban planning
Linköping University, Department of Thematic Studies, Tema Environmental Change. Linköping University, Centre for Climate Science and Policy Research, CSPR. Linköping University, Faculty of Arts and Sciences.ORCID iD: 0000-0003-0109-2288
Linköping University, Centre for Climate Science and Policy Research, CSPR. Linköping University, Department of Thematic Studies, Tema Environmental Change. Linköping University, Faculty of Arts and Sciences.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-5500-3300
VTI (Swedish National Road and Transportation Research Institute), Stockholm, Sweden.
2018 (English)In: Journal of Environmental Policy and Planning, ISSN 1523-908X, E-ISSN 1522-7200, Vol. 20, no 1, p. 81-95Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

It is increasingly expected that private actors play the role as entrepreneurs and front-runners in implementing climate measures, whereas empirical studies of the position, role and engagement of private actors are scarce. Situated in the context of urban planning, a critical arena for triggering climate transitions, the aim of this paper is to explore how Swedish property developers respond to climate change. Qualitative analyses of corporate policy documents and semi-structured interviews with property developers reveal a vast divergence between the written policies, where leadership ambitions are high, and how the practice of property development is discussed in interviews. In the latter, there is little evidence of property developers pursuing a forward-looking or cutting-edge climate change agenda. Instead, they are critical of increased public regulation for climate-oriented measures. Explanations both confirm previous studies, highlighting lack of perceived customer demand, uncertainty of financial returns and limited innovations, and add new elements of place-dependency suggesting that innovative and front-runner practices can only be realized in the larger urban areas. Municipalities seeking to improve their climate-oriented profile in urban planning by involving private property developers need to develop strategies to maneuver the variance in responses to increase the effectiveness of implementation.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Routledge, 2018. Vol. 20, no 1, p. 81-95
Keywords [en]
climate change, implementation, urban planning, property developers, public-private
National Category
Human Geography
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-137575DOI: 10.1080/1523908X.2017.1322944ISI: 000427056700006Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-85018320190OAI: oai:DiVA.org:liu-137575DiVA, id: diva2:1097110
Funder
Swedish Research Council Formas, 242-2011-1599Available from: 2017-05-22 Created: 2017-05-22 Last updated: 2018-06-15Bibliographically approved

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