Harnessing and mobilizing capacities for urban transitions and transformations (UTT)

Research output: Contribution to conferenceOtherAcademic


Sustainability transition research has more recently started to engage with the urban dimension of socio-technical-ecological system change (Wolfram et al. 2016; Frantzeskaki et al. 2017). While its mainstream still lacks sensitivity for the role of space, place and scale (Binz et al. 2020), this is addressed explicitly by research on urban transitions with a view to global urbanisation trends and growing ecological pressures to radically transform urban areas and processes (Elmqvist et al. 2018).
In this context, a particular focus has emerged on the transformative capacity required to initiate and navigate these complex urban dynamics (Hölscher et al. 2018; Wolfram et al. 2019). Such capacity surpasses those available to individual stakeholders but relies fundamentally on their modes of interaction and learning in and about urban systems, as well as their physical conditions. In practice, however, urban stakeholders face the double challenge of having to embrace novel requirements and more ambitious transformative goals (e.g. decarbonisation, closing resource loops) while lacking essential resources (human, institutional, monetary, time, etc.). Research thus far contributed with frameworks to assess and develop awareness about the critical dimensions of urban transformative capacity.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 2020
EventThe 11th International Sustainability Transition conference (IST) - Online event
Duration: 18 Aug 202021 Aug 2020


ConferenceThe 11th International Sustainability Transition conference (IST)


  • Urban transformative capacity
  • Urban transformations
  • Transdisciplinary approaches


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