Striving for just sustainabilities in urban foodscape planning: the case of Almere city in the Netherlands

Samuel Agyekum*, Harrison Awuh

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Abstract

As cities increasingly adopt diverse ethnic, social, and cultural characteristics, there is an emerging logic for planning and policy to reflect this hyper-diversity (inclusion) while resolving the looming sustainability-related challenges. However, what is not adequately addressed in the current literature on urban planning – which could also solidify the justification for more citizen inclusion – is what happens when citizens are involved in planning from the perspective of sustainability. In response, this paper asks a key question: “What are the implications, in the case of urban foodscape, when citizens are involved in planning from the perspective of sustainability?” This question is investigated in this paper in the domain of urban foodscapes and through qualitative interviews, with the support of maps, in the Dutch city of Almere. A novel theoretical combination of just sustainabilities and social licence to operate (SLO) was utilised to frame citizen inclusion in foodscape planning. The findings showed that based on everyday practical experiences of food access in the city, citizens were more concerned about social interaction, the representation of food from cultural origins, and local food production. This theoretical combination, as a way of deepening inclusion, would help avoid the tendency of urban planning being used as an instrument for glossing over social injustice under the guise of citizen participation. This paper, therefore, argues that SLO can be a key pathway for actualising just sustainabilities in both urban planning research and policy.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1063-1084
Number of pages22
JournalLocal Environment
Volume29
Issue number8
Early online date2024
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2024

Keywords

  • Almere
  • Just sustainabilities
  • food access
  • social interaction
  • social license to operate

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