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Lizarralde et al. 2015 (SCS) - pre.pdf (316.07 kB)

Sustainability and resilience in the built environment: The challenges of establishing a turquoise agenda in the UK

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posted on 2022-08-09, 09:42 authored by Gonzalo Lizarraldea, Ksenia ChmutinaKsenia Chmutina, Lee Bosher, Andrew Dainty

The paradigms of sustainability and resilience have had significant impacts on both research and practice in the built environment, attempting to frame ethical approaches with regards to the fragile relationships between the built, the natural and the social environments. Both paradigms adopt a systems approach to the understanding of complexity, highlighting the importance of long-term effects and of taking a holistic view of highly interconnected variables. However, a careful look at policies - and their underlying bodies of knowledge - shows that these paradigms sometimes emphasize different priorities and relationships thereby increasing complexity in policy and decision-making. This paper examinesthe tensions and complexities that appear between the ‘green’ (sustainability) and ‘blue’ (resilience) agendas through a systematic analysis of 43 policy documents issued by the United Kingdom government, and 21 interviews with influential actors in the built environment. Our analysis reveals a series of tensions that occur when the paradigms of resilience and sustainability are translated into policy instruments. Faced with complex tensions between these policy areas, decision and policy makers are prone to simplifying and ‘instrumentalising’ them into a set of normative core principles, creating different interpretations of what is considered ‘sustainable’ and ‘resilient’. Both paradigms lead stakeholders to create their own representations and meanings of the terms, drawing boundaries between the two paradigms. This raises questions as to the plausibility of the aspiration of the so-called ‘turquoise’ agenda in the UK within which both paradigms are seen to interact in mutually supportive ways.

Funding

Loughborough University

Université de Montréal (Canada)

History

School

  • Architecture, Building and Civil Engineering

Published in

Sustainable Cities and Society

Volume

15

Issue

2015

Pages

96 - 104

Publisher

Elsevier

Version

  • AM (Accepted Manuscript)

Rights holder

© Elsevier

Publisher statement

This paper was accepted for publication in the journal Sustainable Cities and Society and the definitive published version is available at https://doi.org/10.1016/j.scs.2014.12.004

Acceptance date

2014-12-01

Publication date

2015-01-03

Copyright date

2015

ISSN

2210-6707

Language

  • en

Depositor

Prof Lee Bosher. Deposit date: 28 July 2022

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