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Duty of Care

a podcast produced with Roberto Rocco

In 2019, The European Union launched its “European Green Deal”, aiming to make Europe carbon neutral by 2050. We all know the transition to a carbon neutral economy is urgent, but will it be fair? Past transitions have always produced winners and losers, with the losing groups often facing unemployment and poverty, with dire consequences for social cohesion and social justice. In the case of climate change and the urgent transition to sustainability, not having a transition will make us all losers, but this does not mean we should not try to avoid or minimise the negative impacts of the transition on vulnerable groups. It is all about the fair distribution of the benefits, but also the burdens of our human association.


Therefore, an essential dimension of the European Green Deal is the concept of “just transition”, that is, a transition to a carbon-neutral economy that is fair and inclusive to all, “leaving no one behind”. Sustainable, fair, and inclusive urbanisation plays a key role in this endeavour. With those ideas in mind, we organised a series of online events and courses that address planning and designing cities and communities for the just transition by bringing together expertise from spatial planning, urban sustainability and resilience, resilience engineering, ethics of resilience and multi-actor systems. We want to discuss the values in socio-technical transitions and urbanisation, namely issues connected to distributive, procedural and restorative spatial justice, as well as citizen participation, democracy and sustainability, understood in its three essential dimensions: social, economic, and environmental sustainability. In doing so, we wish to address the interactions between design and values with an emphasis on operationalising spatial justice through inclusive vision making. And by using societal conflicts stemming from the transition as springboards to dialogue.


The idea of this podcast is to discuss and exchange ideas with academics, practitioners, and students of the built environment to plan and design for the just transition, with a robust understanding of the entanglement between spatial justice and sustainability. 


The DUTY OF CARE podcast is produced by the Faculty of Architecture and the Built Environment of the Delft University of Technology. This podcast is sponsored by the Delft Design for Values Platform, the TU Delft platform discussing values for engineering and design.

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