“It’s Not Talked About”: The risk of failure in practice in sustainability experiments

Collins, Beck (2020) “It’s Not Talked About”: The risk of failure in practice in sustainability experiments. Environmental Innovation and Societal Transition, 35 (Jun 20). pp. 77-87. ISSN 2210-4224

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Abstract

Scholars of sustainability transition have given much attention to local experiments in ‘protected spaces’ where system innovations can be initiated and where learning about those innovations can occur. However, local project participants’ conceptions of success are often different to those of transition scholars; where scholars see a successful learning experience, participants may see a project which has failed to “deliver”. This research looks at two UK case studies of energy retrofit projects – Birmingham Energy Savers and Warm Up North, both in the UK, and the opportunities they had for learning. The findings suggest that perceptions of failure and external real world factors reducing the capacity to experiment, meant that opportunities for learning were not well capitalised upon. This research makes a contribution to the sustainability transitions literature which has been criticised for focusing predominantly on successful innovation, and not on the impact of failure.

Item Type: Article
Identification Number: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.eist.2020.02.008
Date: 6 March 2020
Uncontrolled Keywords: Experiments, Failure, Learning, Energy retrofit
Subjects: K200 Building
K400 Planning (Urban, Rural and Regional)
Divisions: Faculty of Computing, Engineering and the Built Environment
Faculty of Computing, Engineering and the Built Environment > School of Engineering and the Built Environment
Depositing User: Rebecca Collins
Date Deposited: 06 Mar 2020 09:07
Last Modified: 02 Jul 2020 08:18
URI: http://www.open-access.bcu.ac.uk/id/eprint/8979

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