Sustainable Transport: Declaration of Dependence

Better Choices - FB EB

Out there in the real world life is a complex interactive system in which things do not exist in isolation but depend heavily on each other.  As Miller and Scott put it: “A complex adaptive system is a system in which a perfect understanding of the individual parts does not automatically convey a perfect understanding of the whole system’s behavior”.  Which means that if our goal is to create a strong and wise policy for sustainable transport in and around our cities we need to change our tools and perspective  as well as our behaviour.  As the Brundtland Report, “Our Common Future” told us already a full generation ago . . .

The following is taken from the peer review  edition of the forthcoming book “BETTER CHOICES: Bringing Sustainable Transport to Your City“. For a copy drop a line to betterchoices@ecoplan,org.

Continue reading

Mobility in an Age of Turbulence

Let’s first step back to consider the principal dynamics of the broader context – and specifically the high level of activity and innovation concerning ways in which climate and environment issues, new mobility patterns, unserved needs, economic realities, technologies, legislation, interest groups, political pressures, and yet more are going through a raging process of adaptation and change, which is often proving quite painful. If we put it all together we can see that this is a sector and a time in which the term “creative destruction” has real meaning.

Continue reading

Circular Economy: Symposium, Master Class and Peer Review

Circular Economy: The Future of Business

Symposium  of 23 June 2017 – https://goo.gl/af5oEU
École des Ponts Business School

Closing commentary, Eric Britton.
Professor. Sustainable Development, Economy and Democracy.
Institut Supérieur de Gestion, Paris
eric.britton@ecoplan.org | Twitter @ericbritton | Skype newmobility

INTRODUCTION: I was invited by the Dean and faculty of the Ecole des Ponts Business School to participate in a full day Symposium on the Circular Economy at their campus on 23 June 2017,. The objective of the event was to introduce  and invite peer comments on  a new program of  graduate seminars and faculty research exploring the boundaries and potential of this relatively new, environmentally sensitive planning and process technique, which takes as its starting point to scrutinize and reorganize productive units to eradicate waste  systematically, throughout the life cycles and uses of products and their components. I was invited to provide a brief  closing summary of what I had observed and heard over the day, with a certain number of recommendations if that should prove useful. My closing remarks are summarized below.  For background on the program click to  https://lineupr.com/ecole-des-ponts-business-school/circular-economy.

Continue reading

INTRODUCING DESPACIO (QUIETLY/ SLOWLY/RELAX)

Car Free Day in Bogota Colombia 2016

Despacio is an international collaborative program out of Bogotá Colombia, established by Carlos Felipe Pardo and colleagues in Bogotá Colombia founded  in 2011, whose work spans three principal areas:
* Development and life cycle
* Urban-regional development
* Climate change, low carbon policies and emissions reduction

Continue reading

Slow City: In the beginning were the Provos (and the White Plans)

luud-provo-cop-white-bike

To understand Luud Schimmelpennink’s White Bicycle Plan, it helps to have a look at the broader context of values, philosophy and politics that were prevailing in Amsterdam at that time –  the Provos, a Dutch counterculture youth movement in the mid-1960s.

And if one concludes that this was more or less what was going on in other parts of Europe and North America, you would be right.  And a bit wrong. The Dutch were digging deeper. At least this part of Dutch society was.

Continue reading

The Slow City New Mobility Collaborative – First announcement (Testing the water)

FB SC - slow city 1

The Slow City /New Mobility Collaborative is a joint venture launched in late 2016 by Luud Schimmelpennink (The Netherlands)) and Eric Britton (France/USA) as an open public interest forum building on their extensive international competence, experience and networks in the broad area of ecological, environmental and social innovation to improve quality of life in and around cities — and specifically in support of sustainable and equitable mobility and creative use of public space. The two principals have long collaborated on an ad hoc basis, and decided that the time has come for a forceful joint effort targeting the period 2017-2020, from the strategic objective of obtaining sharp reductions of transport-related effluents in support of the Paris COP 21 agreement  — https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paris_Agreement

Proposal: a 2017 Amsterdam Brainstorming Slam on Slow Cities 

Continue reading