Green growth and spatial planning in the Nordic city regions
Nordic cooperation on green growth is important if we are to improve common infrastructure for coping with shared economic and climate challenges, and we are to move research and innovation forward in order to create a more environmentally friendly Nordic region. This working paper has been compiled by a team of Nordregio researchers and aims to provide planners, relevant stakeholders and policy-makers with a useful reference document on the potential interactions between spatial planning and green growth in Nordic city regions. More specifically, the intention of this study is to reveal and provide a better understanding of the key concepts inherent to the spatial planning of green growth in a city regional context from a Nordic perspective. Green growth has been developed as a policy response to the economic crisis, energy challenges and climate change and it can be found in political discourses all around the world. The concept highlights the growth opportunities offered by a greener economy as a way to mobilise green investments in the hope that they pave the way for economic and environmental recovery, stimulating the green growth required by the economy and society. It offers a strategic approach to the promotion of economic growth by adding an environmental quality to existing economic processes, while creating new jobs with lower emissions. The necessity of a transition toward green growth has been acknowledged as key to unlocking sustainable development. It involves, at all levels of government, developing green public policy tools that stimulate investment in businesses and innovations with a reduced environmental impact. The Nordic Council of Ministers sees the role of the concept as that of a guiding vision for the collective utilisation of Nordic strengths in various areas including energy, waste treatment, housing, education, research, green technology and green investments in the public and private…
Local and regional approaches to demographic change
As a follow-up to the Handbook on Demographic Challenges in the Nordic countries, the Nordregio Working Paper Local and Regional Approaches to Demographic Change looks closer at examples of how to meet demographic challenges at local and regional levels. The Working Paper and the summarising web publication present a variety of local and regional approaches to the different aspects of the demographic change. The examples and the summarising conclusions can provide both inspiration and lessons learned for local and regional actors across the Nordic countries. The project was commissioned by the Nordic Working Group on Demography and Welfare and implemented by Nordregio in close cooperation with the working group. For in-depth presentation of each of the examples, please download the Working Paper.
The Use of Integrated Urban Models in the Nordic Countries
This working paper presents the results of a survey on the use of Integrated Urban Models in the Nordic countries carried out by Nordregio’s researchers (with preparatory support from WSP Analysis and Strategy). It reveals that the use of models is limited in the Nordic countries and provides an account of the underlying reasons why, despite the potential benefits they offer, models aren’t more widely used. Integrated urban models (IUMs) can help us gain a better understanding of urban dynamics by creating simplified future scenarios that can be manipulated through simulation. They enable virtual experimentation, allowing the potential impact of new infrastructure, technologies or policies to be determined, which can support strategic planning. Models can also act as powerful tools for facilitating participatory, collaborative decision-making. The visual outputs provide a series of “what if” scenarios, dependant on the strategic policy decisions that are made. The aim of the survey was to learn more about the use of integrated urban modelling tools by Nordic authorities through the following questions: To what extent are integrated urban models being used by Nordic planning authorities? What are the basic technical details of the models being used? How are these models developed, implemented and used as planning support systems? The survey revealed that only six out of the 50 responding local and regional authorities use truly integrated models, by which we mean models that provide urban development forecasts dependent on chosen planning strategies integrating multiple environmental, social and economic variables. Simpler models focusing on single sets of data and GIS-based models are however used by the vast majority of respondents. The low number of users of integrated models appears to be due to a lack of awareness of their uses and benefits, which makes it important that new information be communicated to planners and policymakers…
Bioeconomy in the Nordic region: Regional case studies
This Working Paper by Nordregio presents the results of five case studies on bioeconomy in Nordic regions. It contributes to the discussion on bioeconomy in the Nordic countries by focusing on its implications for regional development and policy. The regional case studies conducted in each of the Nordic countries give an overview of how the development of bioeconomy can be promoted in different settings. The case studies identify, among other things, the main actors as well as the main enabling and impeding factors in the field of bioeconomy. The Working Paper has been prepared under the Nordic Working Group on Green Growth – Innovation and Entrepreneurship, established by the Nordic Council of Ministers.
Sustainable Regions – Sustainable Local Communities
A comparison of experience in dealing with ongoing changes in resource-based regions and communities in the Arctic and Sub-Arctic Regions of the Nordic countries and Canada. The Arctic and Subarctic regions which historically have been heavily dependent on natural resources – both renewable and non-renewable – are currently in a situation where both regions and especially local communities are strongly challenged by globalization processes. And these challenges are greatly felt in the arctic and subarctic regions of both the Nordic countries and Canada.
Nordregio News Issue 3 2014: Poverty and Social Exclusion
In this issue of Nordregio News, we explore the issues of poverty and social exclusion in an urban European context, consider how these issues are dealt with in a suburban municipality in the Stockholm Region and learn about a distinct approach to raise awareness among policy-makers.
Utvärderarnas rapport 2013 Landsbygdsutvecklingsprogram för landskapet Åland perioden 2007 – 2013
Rapporten är framtagen i samarbete mellan Nordregio och Ålands statistik- och utredningskontor (ÅSUB) på uppdrag av Landskapsregeringen på Åland. Syftet med rapporten är att fungera som stöd och underlag för de programansvariga för det åländska landsbygdsutvecklingsprogrammet i deras avrapportering till EU avseende utvecklingen inom programmet under 2013. Den offentliga finansieringsramen för Landsbygdsutvecklingsprogrammet på Åland uppgår till cirka 58 miljoner euro, exklusive 1,3 miljoner reserverade för tekniskt stöd för programgenomförandet. Den absolut dominerande delen av programmet utgörs av axel 2 Att förbättra miljön och landsbygden, som utgör cirka 81 procent av budgeten. Drygt 13 procent avser axel 1 Förbättra konkurrenskraften inom jord- och skogsbruket, medan axel 3 Livskvalitet och diversifierad ekonomi på landbygden och axel 4 Genomförande av LEADER-dimensionen, utgör cirka 3 procent vardera. Detta är den sista årsrapporten inom ramen för utvärderingsuppdraget som nu istället övergår mot en slutvärdering av hela programmet. Rapporten består av en nulägesbeskrivning av befolkning och ekonomiska förutsättningar, en kort presentation av det ekonomiska läget i programmet samt en fördjupning avseende frågor om kompetensutveckling och investeringsstöd inom ramen för axel 1. Liksom i tidigare årsrapporter har vi gjort detta genom ett insamlande av enkätdata/intervjudata från de som mottagit stödmedel. Detta år har två enkäter utvecklats med utgångspunkt i interventionslogiken för respektive stödform. Generellt för båda åtgärderna är att de påverkar många olika delar av verksamheterna, och att de har effekter som inte alltid går att kvantifiera på kort sikt. Trots detta finns en rad direkta effekter av både investeringar och kompetensutveckling som vi har fångat och beskriver i denna årsrapport.
Integrated Models: Planning Urban Sustainability
This policy brief offers local and regional planners an introduction to the world of integrated urban modelling. It provides information on their potential benefits, implementation process and current use in the Nordic city-regions. Integrated urban models (IUMs) provide planners with a decision-making support tool that allows them to visualise urban development strategies and assess their socio-economic and environmental impacts. This type of tool is valuable for planners faced with the difficult task of balancing the many social, economic and environmental issues that affect spatial plans and strategies. They are also act as a useful support in dialogue with the diverse group of stakeholders involved in transportation, land use planning and urban development. Nordregio’s research into these types of models has been carried out in cooperation with WSP Analysis & Strategy, and was commissioned by the Nordic Working Group on Green Growth – Sustainable Urban Regions.
Nordregio News Issue 2 2014: Monitoring Territorial Dynamics
In this issue of Nordregio News, we take a tour of territorial monitoring – looking at conceptual, practical and applied aspects of producing and using such knowledge.