Thursday, August 19, 2010

Thomas Forster - Is there a cosmopolitan solution to climate change?

As a researcher studying issues related to cosmopolitanism and democracy on the planet, I saw with interest the title of the Tribute 'From Climate Change to Environmental Justice. " H version, I thought, refers to both categories of subjects or both of these categories are or could be, connected;
As far as I am concerned, the two issues are certainly a common point. In my research on cosmopolitanism, one of the most recent thoughts that came to the forefront on environmental sustainability. In 2005, David Held said, one of the eight points of the cosmopolitanism that 'economic and social development must be consistent with the management of key resources in the world, the resources, ie, which are irreplaceable and non-viable '. I think this is a very interesting approach to the cosmopolitan agenda because, in the same passage in the above report, the Ield also expresses the belief that "those who significantly affect public decisions, issues or procedures, should , ceteris paribus, have an equal opportunity, directly or indirectly through elected representatives, to influence and to shape ... if these decisions are inter-regional, transnational and interregional, then the political organizations must not only locally but and a broader perspective and framework for action. "Scholars such as Andrew Linklater also have the same view. In 1999, Linklater said the cosmopolitan agenda must create 'wider community speech and limits the forms of unjust exclusion in aftes'-regulating the international agenda with' dialogue and consensus rather than authority and power. " For a general cosmopolitan agenda, those goals seem good, but I think in the context of environmental problems facing the modern world, and in light of the statement of Held that sustainability is paramount in the cosmopolitan practice, away from the solution (and the planet) that should try to fly. I think this is because the heterogeneity of the contemporary international political system hinders the effective and democratic debate, since the decisions taken at international level and is therefore the only major obstacle to effective climate change today. I will try to highlight below.
According to the cosmopolitan way of thinking to which I referred above, in relation to any decisions on global environmental issues or sustainability issues, should be a global referendum so that people have the opportunity to shape the outcome or to engage in an exchange of dialogue to formulate a decision that suits everyone. Both proposals are not yet functional look like if we want to reach a concrete solution to this extremely pressing issue. The reason may be that in the absence of an impractical world referendum, any place would send representatives to vote for or start a dialogue on their behalf. If this actually happened, it would be extremely naive to believe that the delegates would vote only "for the good of humanity as a whole ', since the internal political commitment and financial considerations would play their role in decision making. This was especially true for developing nations that depend more heavily on the use of coal for economic development. The cosmopolitan ideals that we identified above would, in fact, unsuitable if they had to do with issues like climate change due to the inherent cultural, political and especially economic differences between the forces and decisions that left the outcome of any discussion.
Take for example the Kyoto Protocol. While it is obviously a 'common international effort to combat the effects of greenhouse gases and climate change, the whole process was dragged under the weight of internal' needs' and responsibilities of each nation, culminating in the refusal of the United States and even to ratify the treaty. It is unclear if this position will change in the near future. Indeed, if an article published in May 2008 meant something, it may not even represent the United States is the largest object of international concern. The Aufhammer and Carson reported in their article on the future outcome of carbon dioxide in China that "according to best estimates of our carbon dioxide emissions in China surpasses U.S. in 2006 instead of 2020 as previously projected." As has been clear for some time that 'the United States has set a requirement for membership in any international agreement as the Kyoto Protocol, go ahead and China in substantial reductions in carbon' future as Regarding international cosmopolitan democratic solutions to the problem of climate change and environmental degradation looks bleak. According to a recent comment, "the scientists seeking to stabilize the growth of global emissions by 2020 to prevent a non- reversible, they believe, damage the climate will wonder how this can be achieved. "
How, then, be achieved? Far from me to suggest here the final solution, though I would like to contribute with some ideas. Using the newly cosmopolitan terminology suggest that in terms of the environmental issue, we must see that not only current but also future generations of humans. They, as we even more will receive the greatest impacts of environmental changes that are sure to happen if people continue to follow this path. So while I'm certainly a champion of cosmopolitan ideals, I disagree with how possibly will want to see the collective environmental change.
The main problem is that climate change and environmental degradation are issues that can not wait to be solved until we find an effective multilateral solution. Scientists talk, long on "point of no return '(and more recently for' tipping point ') that, if we believe the estimates closer and closer every year. Faced thus appears that the only real change can be facilitated by a unilateral solution would say that this solution can provide the European Union. The reason is that the EU is, at this time, an extremely strong financial position to facilitate change. As one of, if not omegalyteros trading partner of China in the wider world as a whole oikonomiakai a wonderful environmental agenda, the EU is certainly able to make the change on its own terms. In today's global economy, economic sanctions can have both hard power as the atomic bomb in 1945. Ultimately, China, the United States and other countries have any clear nationalistic attitudes towards environmental policy will be drafted if there were any effects on their economies, so as they say they do not want to participate fully in simeriniperivallontiki agenda!
The moral is clear to me and I think it is purely cosmopolitan nature. On issues affecting people around the world easily be put into practice some fundamental rights that can claim the whole of humanity. Such as food, shelter, education and medical care, I think that the right to live in a clean and environmentally stable world is a request today, and the future generation (s). This ensures that if a monetary value be placed on the environment as a whole will not be done in a way that is detrimental to future human agency. At best, this request will promote the natural democratic process, but the clock beat and some states still have selfish nationalistic agendas, it seems that violence, and in this case the economic violence, can the only real and effective way to facilitate change. To use a reference to Isaiah Berlin, 'we recognize that it is possible, sometimes justified, forcing people to name an object (say of justice or public health) that would themselves, if they were more enlightened, to seek but they do not, because they are blind or ignorant or corrupt. " In the case of the current global environmental crisis, I would say that the European Union must take this unpleasant, but clearly cosmopolitan responsibility, before it is too late. At the same time, economic violence, should be given increased funding to develop and implement environmentally sustainable energy solutions for developing countries.
I also believe that unilateral, centered on the cosmopolitan, solutions can be useful not only for the pursuit of environmental justice and to achieve justice, more generally, critical problems of discrimination, poverty and conflict, which initially caused similar selfish nationalist causes. In Africa, for example, fear of the revival of historical and recent negative colonial reflex, the West has left out many issues, so as not declared undemocratic. But according to the global agenda for justice, as I said earlier, there must be some fundamental rights that can claim the whole of humanity, beyond the 'democratic' control of any country. As aptly put by the Zimbabwean archbishop Pius Neube 2007, there is a clear choice between supporting "a government that is willing to sacrifice the lives of the people or the reverse (the West) with the risk be called imperialistic." This statement applies to many different fundamental rights and freedoms are violated worldwide on a daily basis, although the nature and content of these rights are the subject of another discussion.
Finally, if one wonders how the proposed agenda can be implemented in practice, there are obviously many questions that need answers. For example, exactly what economic sanctions can be taken? How long will it take and can the EU to reach a decision to implement this policy? What specific environmental concessions should make countries that are currently not cooperative and in what order (non-cooperative countries) will be prioritized? As this is only a small selection of items that can be made in relation to my proposals (there will inevitably be many more) will not give answers at the moment, preferring to let the readers think they discussed. Basically, if you do not rely solely on dominant solutions for international problems, can generate ideas that we had previously thought, and tried to get one of these here. I hope this attempt for a non-traditional cosmopolitan solution to the current global environmental crisis and to urge others to do the same.
In conclusion, while the environmental future of the world is not deleted auspicious date, I do not believe that lack of hope. In this article I touched only one possible solution to the environmental (and perhaps some other) problems facing the international community, that's inspired by the cosmopolitanism of unilateral action. However, regardless of what positive steps are, for all that I know is that it should be soon. Whatever method you use to fight this threat to humanity, one must take the lead to promote the process and to take responsible decisions for the good of all. Although it can not be precisely aligned with the 'traditional' cosmopolitan views, such as Held and Linklater, I believe that discussions such as those made in this article is potentially much more important to the earth from a purely academic cosmopolitan concerns. For a long time, domestic economic considerations prevented the implementation of the necessary global initiatives. As suggested here, the 'great democratic experiment' of the EU could promote the change of attitude that is so desperately needed some areas. For the good of our hope someone out there listening.

Iain Borden - The unknown city of architecture and everyday life

Moving beyond the horizon of modern architectural planning, Iain Borden shows the different activities that people in cities. Mapping a city for sex, for voices, for loud music, running, a mere contemplation of demonstrations for ground tricks, and street artists.
When one reads a book like that of Richard Rogers 'Cities for a Small Planet', tends to find solutions and a quest for certainty. The Rogers proposed mixed-use neighborhoods with 'open mind', a participatory planning and "creative citizenship" for all restored buildings and vacant lot, using different architectural aesthetic, greater use of symbolic public buildings and the conversion of buildings with shops and offices in housing, especially for the disadvantaged. When the broken politics of architecture is increasingly important in areas metastrouktouralistikis, business disputes and single-issue pressure groups, this kind of architectural expression is perhaps necessary and timely.
Or at least so it looks like. And here I must confess to some embarrassment. While these suggestions seem largely correct in what they say, what they say, that only leaves the impression, that they fail, it is of concern. What is even more worrying is the pattern of urban housing. These are urban culture, traditional art, music, theater, galleries, opera, large public squares. Above all, it is a city with public squares, gentle walks, oral discussions and brown on the edges of squares. It is the city of Moca, the multi-page Sunday newspaper, the 'design' lamps, fresh pasta and concrete structures.
There is, however, a city for all those different activities that people in cities. It is a city for sex, for voices, for loud music, running, a mere contemplation of demonstrations for underground tricks for street artists. It is a city of tension on tough decisions about situations out of control, nor are city taxi ranks, overhead or underground flea markets, or the city for ascetic seclusion, pure spirituality, strange contradictions or ephemeral artistic interventions.
Where to look for? What parts of the city to explore? Here suggest five possible areas, which I got from the book The Unknown City: Contesting Architecture and Social Space, which I published in collaboration with Jane Rendell, Alicia Pivaro and Joe Kerr.
How do we deal with identity and experience a city and its people? How can we recognize the temporary building identity that people make in relation to architectural their daily life? For example, in reference to the Wythenshawe Manchester Doreen Masseyanarotietai what the experience is an older man for this part, and how it differs from the other inhabitants of the city? These stories underscore that we all have the same experience of space and, indeed, even the same our experiences and opinions vary depending on the time and place.
How can we reclaim, honor, and to record these kinds of identity and experience? What tales of the city and its architecture is suitable for recording? Los Angeles, for example, in the hands of someone like tinDolores Hayden, can reveal almost forgotten stories about African-American residents, stories almost erased from the public area, but now come back to memory, recorded and valued. A memorial wall, built in the lower Los Angeles, it honors the life of a policy or strategy, but that a resident of Biddy Mason, a former slave who lived a life out of the ordinary, including creating precedents for legislative liberalization slaves and property rights of black citizens, while providing useful social services as productive midwife.
Such memories are important and timely contribution to the withdrawal of damaged structures and concealed facts in a process of resistance to simplified historical references that serve the interests of current dominant ideologies.
Mastered space
A third area of concern has to do with the way we use space, especially with the way capitalism operated the site as a neutral object may be subject only to the forces of rational understanding. For example, William Menking discovered in New York coordinated efforts 'cleansing' of the Grand Central from the 'undesirable' uses, as capitalists seek to change and control the city as their own, secluded manor. This kind of historical work is important, as to resist the abuses of capitalism, these abuses should first of all to identify and understand.
Adequate parking
It is also important not to forget the myriad ways in which people can disturb the dreams of architects, planners and those responsible for the city, people do not want to act in accordance with major projects and neat cultures. These people range from Filipino maids in Hong Kong, politely but firmly appropriated a small portion of public space in their weekend off, so that the Skater in a very clear form of this strategy, occupy and redefine small-town sites to make their own architecture that consists of new mapping and ephemeral occupation. (This was my contribution to The Unknown City).
Another area of concern is the display-what could be the appropriate art and architectural forms of the democratic city? I think a particular risk of new forms of cultural activity that can adopt the form of contemporary culture without being judgmental about -like case, for example, much of the architecture of Las Vegas. In contrast, projects involving the city may have a critical dimension, so the city itself put forward as a means of thinking about culture. Regular here could include public art projects such as cooperation Fashion Architecture Taste with London Transport and artists and musicians, or the degradation of the image of urban space or through the theory of Bernard Tschumi, like the book either as Manhattan Transcripts Park La Vilet or projects Nigel Coates for an architectural narrative and bodily pleasures.
Even more feasible projects include the film Patrick Keiller 'London', which leads the viewer into a bizarre series of psycho-geographical travel, literary representations to address the city as a meeting point erotic or endorsement of Steve Pile on the unknown, bizarre, and the hidden-secret networks of the city.
Consequently, we have a type unknown and not sure the city, a democratic city based on three types of difference-differences that we would do well to watch and encourage.
First, we must recognize that people of different origin, race, age, class, sexuality, gender and general interests all have different ideas about public space and therefore use and make their own places where they develop their identities as individuals and citizens .
Secondly, we must acknowledge that apart from the square of pizza and Avenue, cities need concealed spaces and completely exposed areas, hard areas and soft areas, quiet areas and noisy areas. Cities need places where people can remember, think, experience to experience, to challenge, to strive, to pocket, afraid to love, to make things, lose things and generally be what it is.
Thirdly, and most importantly, we need to be places where we are confronted with different and identical to acknowledge and accept challenges. Otherwise, we are invisible, disappear from the square, censor, denied the right to the city. We need a city that does not know, we do not understand, which we have not even come up against, which is also strange, familiar and unfamiliar to us.

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