The Political Ecology of Austerity explores the environmental dimension of austerity that has thus far escaped academic, policy, and media attention.
Offering a better comprehension of the full socio-environmental impact of austerity measures, the book highlights the importance of considering environmental issues when designing responses to economic crisis in the future. Mobilising detailed case studies from across the world, the volume documents the ways in which austerity impacts global and local ecologies, shapes environmental conflicts and gives rise to new forms and practices of social moblisation and resistance. Bringing together theoretical debates and rigorous case studies, the book proposes ‘the political ecology of austerity’ as an appropriate method of analysis that can inform our understanding of the shift in environmental protection policies and the intensification of growth practices (green or otherwise) that followed the 2008 global economic crisis. The Political Ecology of Austerity discloses austerity to be a globalised set of tools not only for budgetary discipline, but also for socio-environmental discipline that justifies the continuation of capital accumulation at the expense of further global environmental degradation.
This book will be of great interest to students and scholars of social and political sciences, environmental studies, urban studies, and political ecology.
Table of Contents
Introduction: Austerity as an Environmentally Dangerous Idea: A Political Ecology Approach, Maria Kaika, Rita Calvário, Giorgos Velegrakis PART I: Re-Engineering Socio-Environmental Relations Under Austerity Chapter 1: Austerity and the Rebel City: The Right to the (Smart) City in Barcelona, Greig Charnock, Hug March, Ramon Ribera-Fumaz Chapter 2: On a thought and a prayer: austerity, climate denialism and disaster in neoliberal Australia, Zoe Holman Part II. Re-Enacting Socio-Environmental Exclusion Under Austerity Chapter 3: The Coloniality of Austerity: On Crisis, Finance, and Indigenous Resistance in British Columbia’s Forests, Michael Ekers Chapter 4: When Disaster Meets Austerity: Environmental Inequality and Historical Injustice during Crisis, Carmen Leidereiter Chapter 5: Politics of austerity and ‘Otherness’ as public health determinants: The malaria epidemic in Greece during crisis (2009-2014), Panagiota Kotsila, Giorgos Kallis Part III. Re-Awakening Socio-Environmental Movements Against Austerity Chapter 6: The Politicised Ecologies of Austerity: Anti-austerity environmentalism during and after the Greek crisis, Giorgos Velegrakis, Rita Calvário, Maria Kaika Chapter 7: Resisting Austerity in the Era of COVID-19: Between Nationwide Mobilisation and Decentralised Organising in Ecuador, Diana Vela-Almeida, Angus Lyall, Geovanna Lasso, Diego Andreucci Chapter 8: Political ecologies of value: Austerity and socio-environmental conflict in the Italian South, Antonio Maria Pusceddu Part IV. Re-Asserting the Commons as a Socio-Environmental Alternative Against Austerity Chapter 9: Urban gardening and post-austerity in Lisbon: Between subaltern urbanism and green gentrification, Eduardo Ascensão, Franklin Ginn Chapter 10: Community gardening and the geographies of everyday lives in the city: Reclaiming the urban commons in austerity Greece, Elia Apostolopoulou Epilogue: Austerity from financial to pandemic crisis, Maria Kaika, Rita Calvário, Giorgos Velegrakis
Rita Calvário is a multidisciplinary social scientist working at the nexus of food politics, agrarian movements, and political ecology with a focus on southern Europe. She holds a PhD in Environmental Studies from the Institute of Environmental Science and Technology (ICTA) at the Autonomous University of Barcelona. She is currently a postdoctoral researcher at the Centre of Social Studies, University of Coimbra.
Maria Kaika is Director of the Centre for Urban Studies and Chair in Urban Regional and Environmental Planning at the University of Amsterdam. She held tenured positions in the Universities of Oxford and Manchester, and was awarded Fellowships and Visiting professorships at the University of London, Paris Est (LATTS), KULeuven, TU Vienna, and the Netherlands Institute for Advanced Study in the Humanities and Social Sciences.
Giorgos Velegrakis is a geographer and political ecologist currently working as adjunct faculty at the Philosophy and History of Science Department of the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens, Greece, and at the Surveying and Geoinformatics Engineering Department, University of West Attica, Greece. He is teaching Political Ecology, Economic Geography and Science Technology Society (STS) on both graduate and postgraduate levels.