13 Pages

Development/Demonstration: An Adaptive Strategy

Introduction Demonstration is posited here as a key, if not necessary, strategy for the transformation of both institutional structures governing the delivery of urban environments and the principles and requisite conditions - social and technological - that can define sustainable urban development. This chapter addresses projects as means for policy development. It refers to the rich history of urban demonstration, giving examples from current practice. The key features of demonstration projects are outlined along with an expanded conception of the role of demonstration. The chapter argues for employment of an adaptive approach to strategies for integrated urban development with greater sustainability characteristics. In many municipal contexts, there is the experience of innovation lethargy, due in part to the existence of multiple barriers and a degree of uncertainty in all jurisdictions. Such a socially constructed stalemate can be undermined by the social dynamism of learning. The 'adaptive approach can loosen deadlock with surprising outcomes' (Lee, 1993, p. 58), and is needed if scientific, professional and political uncertainty is not to frustrate socially timely action.