Planning for sustainable lifestyles: political limitations and possibilities

All plans are saturated with explicit or implicit ideas and assumptions about lifestyles and ways of living. Lifestyles have furthermore been given a key role for achieving sustainable consumption and production patterns, but planning for sustainable lifestyles is a thorny issue for urban policy-making within the current political paradigm.

THIS POLICY BRIEF highlights policy possibilities and reflects on how urban planning and policy-making might approach the issue of sustainable lifestyles based on recent social science. While the focus in planning discourse has been mainly on the possibilities of urban form, technology and information in promoting sustainability, there is a more limited understanding of the interrelations between urban policy making and lifestyle practices. Within the CASUAL project, we have reviewed recent research on lifestyles, planning and sustainability and we have also done empirical research on lifestyles and mobility behaviour.

This Policy Brief is one of four policy briefs that was published within the JPI Urban Europe CASUAL project.