Chapter

Neighbourhood sustainability: residents' perceptions and perspectives

John Flint

in The Future of Sustainable Cities

Published by Policy Press

Published in print October 2011 | ISBN: 9781847426673
Published online May 2012 | e-ISBN: 9781447305545 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1332/policypress/9781847426673.003.0010
Neighbourhood sustainability: residents' perceptions and perspectives

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This chapter presents qualitative evidence from six low income neighbourhoods in Britain to explore residents' perceptions of, and perspectives on, neighbourhood change and sustainability. Residents identify a range of drivers, symbols and indicators of neighbourhood sustainability. There is a disconnection between the attachment and future commitment residents express towards their neighbourhoods and their ability to translate this sense of belonging into ownership and influence. The chapter argues that all neighbourhoods require a minimum standard of retail, service and housing infrastructure, which requires a combination of public policy and investment from the voluntary, community and private sectors. The vagaries of private sector investment will not deliver sustainability in lower income urban neighbourhoods and there is an inherent tension between policy aims of promoting labour and housing market flexibility and simultaneously emphasising localism, a sense of belonging, and cohesion as drivers of sustainability.

Keywords: community; neighbourhoods; neighbourhood change; residents' perspectives; sustainability; urban policy

Chapter.  7604 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Urban and Rural Studies

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