Planning for Environmentally Sustainable Metropolitan Development in Sweden
Mentor:Peter Dreier, Dr. E.P. Clapp Distinguished Professor of Politics, director of Urban and Environmental Policy Department at Occidental College, Occidental College
Coinciding with an ever-increasing mountain of evidence, there is a growing global unanimity on the need to limit the effects of human activity on the natural environment. Sweden’s institutions have led the way in terms of seeking to lessen their impact on the environment. This project looks to ground famed eco-municipalities Hammarby Sjöstad in Stockholm and Malmö’s Western Harbor in Swedish political history. It intends to fill a gap in the literature where these new city districts are prematurely glorified as successes while ignoring the cultural and political values, as well as policy mechanisms behind them. The Brudtland committee defined sustainable development as “development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.” 21 Interviews were conducted in Sweden between May and July with professionals from academia, government, political, and private institutions consulted. The hypothesis was a Social Democratic ideological hegemony is responsible for this climate leadership, but the results show that this ideology is a compliment to what is already culturally endemic. Additionally, it appears as though the new districts, heralded as models in the international literature, actually came from a more improvisational and experimental context than the confluence suggests.