Transforming urban planning policies and strategies towards sustainable metabolisms (WP 4)

The aim of this part of the research is to develop the results achieved into new policy strategies and tools for accomplishing sustainable urban settlement structures. The outputs will be communicated to key actors in urban development processes and will be of direct benefit for them. In this respect, the research helps to facilitate the decoupling of demand for urban growth from the excessive consumption of finite resources. Its focus on application and knowledge transfer fills a major gap between knowledge and action and between policy and implementation.

Its key deliverables, will provide practical mechanisms for implementing the policy frameworks which have been developed by the Thematic Strategies on Urban Environment, among others, “to reduce the environmental impacts of resource use in a growing economy” (CEC, 2005). The aim is to identify the ways in which a “more value – less impact – better alterna­tives” system can be truly achieved in urban development processes.

What are the appropriate institutional frame­works; what combinations of policy packages are most effective; what is the right balance between regulato­ry measures (sticks) and positive incentives (carrots) for motivating sustainable behaviour in the use of re­sources? While there have been several attempts for addressing these questions, their trans­ferability and acceptability has remained a major challenge. Hence, the outputs from this work package are aimed at developing not only new strategies and policy tools, but also guidelines on how such tools can be transferred from one urban region to another (transferability guide).

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