1 Roskilde School of Governance, Department of Social Sciences and Business, Roskilde University2 The Department of Society and Globalisation, Roskilde University3 Department of Environmental Engineering
Facilitating new forms of interaction between citizens and local government
The paper explores how local public authorities can support and facilitate projects, which promote sustainable transi-tion in urban neighbourhoods, by supporting local intermediaries. The role of intermediaries can be performed by a variety of actors such as public housing associations; NGO´s, or semi public institutions. Our claim is that interme-diary actors have the potential to reach a broader scope of citizens due to their particular role in between public au-thorities and civil society. The key question of the paper is how the intermediary actors facilitate citizens' participatory processes in sustainable urban management and the paper explores the development of communities of practise as a way to develop learning processes and new practises? The aim is to analyse approaches of involving citizens and how they contribute to the development of new actor configurations in urban social-technical systems. This perspective may contribute to the study of transition processes that so far have not studied citizens' roles and practises in depth. Based on discussions of theories on communities of practise, the article discusses the mobilisation of citizens through social learning processes and how the development of new practises plays a part in multi level transitions. Empirically, the article is based on case studies from Denmark of local environmental centres, green guides etc. that have performed innovative forms of involving citizens in sustainable urban development. The empirical material of the paper is based on interviews as well as document analysis collected during the last decade.
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2nd International Conference on Sustainability Transitions: Diversity, plurality and change: breaking new grounds in sustainability transition research,, 2011