Social sustainability in eco-urban neighbourhoods: Revisiting the Nordic model

Meg Holden, Annika Airas, Majken Toftager Larsen

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingBook chapterResearchpeer-review


This chapter considers the Nordic model and some of the eco-urban neighbourhoods that this model has generated from past to present, in order to ask in what way this model does not serve social sustainability goals. Nordic nations have maintained such broad-based achievements as they have weathered economic crisis: serious crises have been faced successively in the 1980s and 1990s by different Nordic countries. The image of the Nordic model integrates the environmental, economic and social aspects of the sustainable development ideal more seamlessly than most. With certain origins in Nordic nations, an increasingly popular way of addressing problems of urban sustainability has been the creation of ‘eco-urban neighbourhoods’. Two cases of model-sustainable neighbourhoods in the Nordic cities of Helsinki and Copenhagen will serve as further elaboration of the contradictions confronted in Nordic cities as eco-urban development accelerates, and sometimes comes into conflict with longer-standing social sustainability attitudes, values, and practices.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationUrban Social Sustainability : Theory, Policy and Practice
EditorsM Reza Shirazi, Ramin Keivani
Number of pages22
Place of PublicationLondon
Publication date2019
ISBN (Electronic)9781315115740
Publication statusPublished - 2019

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