1st Edition

Retrofitting Cities Priorities, Governance and Experimentation

Edited By Mike Hodson, Simon Marvin Copyright 2016
    294 Pages
    by Routledge

    294 Pages
    by Routledge

    Developing an up-to-date critical framework for analysing urban retrofit, this is the first book to examine urban re-engineering for sustainability in a socio-technical context. Retrofitting Cities examines why retrofit is emerging as an important strategic issue for urban authorities and untangles the mix of economic, competitive, ecological and social drivers that influence any transition towards a more sustainable urban environment.

    Retrofitting Cities comparatively explores how urban scale retrofitting can be conceptualised as a socio-technical transition; to critically compare and contrast different national styles of response in cities of the north and global south; and, to develop new research and policy agendas on future development of progressive retrofitting. Bringing together a group of researchers from a variety of disciplinary backgrounds that reflect the complexity of the research challenge, Retrofitting cities looks across different infrastructures and types of built environment, dealing with diverse urban contexts and examining formal as well as community responses. This is a uniquely practical book for urban planning and policy professionals as well as for researchers in urban studies and urban design.

      1. IntroductionMike Hodson and Simon Marvin Part 1 The Problematic of Urban Retrofit and its Dynamics: Priorities, Places, Finance, Systems, Natures and Users 2. Seismic Shifts and Retrofits: Scale and Complexity in the Seismic Retrofit of California Bridges—Benjamin Sims 3. Retrofit in Greater Manchester and Cardiff: Governing to Transform or to Ungovern?—Carla de Laurentis, Mike Hodson and Simon Marvin 4. Socio-Technical Innovation in Heat and Cooling Networks – Challenges of Financing New Systems in UK Cities—Janette Webb 5. Retrofitting Biogenic Urban Infrastructure—Stephanie Pincetl 6. Innovation in Urban Networks: Co-evolving Consumer Roles—Bas van Vliet Part 2 Governing and Organising Urban Retrofit 7. Retrofitting global environmental politics? Networking and climate action in the C40—Michele Acuto 8. Grassroots Innovations vs. Green Cluster Initiatives: Reconciling two different approaches in Housing Energy Retrofit Programming—Philip J. Vergragt and Halina Szejnwald Brown 8. Beyond the split incentive: Governing socio-technical relations in private rental housing retrofit.—Ralph Horne, Tony Dalton and Susie Moloney 9. NGOs as Intermediaries for Pro-Poor Urban Electrification—Bipasha Baruah 10. From consumers to clients: Regularizing electricity networks in Sao Paulo’s favelas—Andrés Luque-Ayala Part 3 Experimenting With and Learning From Retrofit 11. Placing Low Carbon Transitions: Learning to Retrofit in Living Laboratories—James Evans 12. Demonstrating Retrofitting: Perspectives from Australian Local Government—Robyn Dowling, Pauline McGuirk and Harriet Bulkeley 13. Partnerships for climate change in Maputo, Mozambique—Vanesa Castán Broto, Emily Boyd, Jonathan Ensor and Sirkku Juhola 14. Retrofit transitions and the creative dynamics of squat tech—Jana Wendler and James Evans 15. Conclusion—Mike Hodson and Simon Marvin


      Mike Hodson joined Manchester University, UK, as Research Fellow in April 2014. He is based jointly in the Sustainable Consumption Institute (SCI) and the Manchester Institute of Innovation Research (MIoIR), and he primarily works on a comparative EU Framework 7 project, PATHWAYS, assessing transition pathways across electricity, mobility, land-use and agro-food sectors, comparatively across national contexts. Mike was previously Senior Research Fellow at Salford University, where he spent a decade in the Centre for Sustainable Urban and Regional Futures (SURF) working in the area of urban and regional governance and transitions. He has published and presented widely on this research agenda. His developing research interests are at the interface of systemic transitions and territorial transitions.

      Simon Marvin is a Professor in the Department of Geography, Durham University, UK. His research interests focus on the changing relations between cities and infrastructure networks. To date, he has played major roles within urban research towards addressing important questions surrounding telecommunications, infrastructure and mobility, sustainability, smart meters, interdisciplinary urban research, and, most recently, cities, systemic transitions, climate change, ecological security and smart cities.

      "This important and timely collection brings to the fore one of the most compelling questions of the urban age, how to retrofit the troubled cityscapes bequeathed by two centuries of industrial capitalism? This is to challenge the ethos of mindless material expansion, with all the waste and redundancy it generates, and urge its replacement with a new urban political ecology that values restoration and resilience. Retrofitting Cities offers much wisdom for an urban world at risk." –Brendan Gleeson, University of Melbourne

      "Retrofitting cities is THE pre-eminent sustainability challenge of the 21st century. It is complex – and requires assembling and applying a new matrix of innovative technical, design, governance and community processes to the varied urban fabrics of metropolitan areas, across all global settings. Hodson and Marvin make an important early contribution to this challenge of urban transformation by directing our attention to how this might begin to be implemented." –Peter W. Newton, Swinburne University of Technology and Co-operative Research Centre for Low Carbon Living

      "This marvelous and timely volume provides critical insight into the social, technical, political, bureaucratic, economic, cultural, and environmental factors that urban retrofitting programmes face. Weaving together critical conceptual insights alongside rigorous empirical evidence, this volume travels the world in order to explore and analyze the complex processes of metropolitan retrofit. Combining optimism with suspicion in appropriate amounts, this book provides an unparalleled insight into one most important agendas of our time." –Mark Whitehead, Aberystwyth University

      "Refurbishing the existing building stock or upgrading energy infrastructures are crucial to make our cities more climate friendly and sustainable. Still, current research and policy making largely focuses on the development of new technologies and systems. This book makes up for this deficit and provides a much-needed and fresh perspective on urban retrofit. Applying a socio-technical perspective helps us understand key challenges of infrastructure change and develop governance capacities for urban retrofit." –Harald Rohracher, Linköping University

      "This fascinating, wide-ranging, state of the art volume sheds light on both the technological concerns associated with urban retrofitting and the complexity of governing processes that sustain them. The contributors to Retrofitting Cities reject the technological automatism associated with mainstream retrofitting conversations and provide a critical perspective on the societal and political consequences of the urban transition in an era of climate change." –Roger Keil, York Research Chair in Global Sub/Urban Studies

      "The book sheds light on the complexity of urban retrofit and presents retrofitting as a ‘deeply social and political concern’ (p.266). The various contributions illuminate that retrofitting is inherently contested and subject to different interpretations, which can be traced back to it being a socio-technical endeavour involving a diverse range of domains, actors and technologies and starting from very different cultural and material preconditions." – Lea Fuenfschilling, Lund University, International Journal of Housing Policy