Inclusion in urban environmental governance of small and intermediary cities of the global South





Multi-level governance, urban sustainability, inclusion, participation, urban governance


Urban sustainability is governed beyond the urban scale through trans-local networks and assemblages of actors and institutions. There is an emerging field of interest that aims to understand the outcomes of urban sustainability interventions, both from the environmental and social equity perspectives. This paper contributes to the literature on governing urban environmental sustainability transitions, with a distinct focus on small and intermediary cities of the global South. Actors in cities of the global South are adopting a variety of ways towards achieving urban sustainability transitions in the realm of disaster risk reduction, adaptation building, greenhouse gas emission reduction, and natural resource management. Our paper employs an analytical framework derived from Bai et. al. (2010) to chart the actors, drivers, finances, barriers, and the inclusivity and sustainability outcomes in seven interventions led by different actors. Five of the cases are drawn extensively from literature, while two case studies reflect on our primary engagement in the cities of Nakuru in Kenya and Udon Thani in Thailand. We find that the actors leading and financing the projects and the drivers of the intervention can explain differential outcomes in the inclusion processes and the framing of environmental solutions. We then delineate the opportunities and barriers to achieve multi-level governance approaches that are relevant to planning transformations in the South.




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