From neighbourhood sustainability assessment tools, to the upgrading of informal settlements in the global South : the proposal of a methodological approach based on sustainable indicators for guiding the planning practice

Abstract : Starting from the assumption that often the planning practice fails in delivering opportune solutions to the problems of the urban settlements worldwide, the thesis wants to investigate new approaches to enhance sustainability at the neighbourhood scale, with a specific focus on the informal settlements in the global South. The situation imposes the urgent need to focus attention on improving planners’ capacity, and the study wants to investigate the plausibility of the adoption of a methodology based on sustainable indicators to guide the upgrading process of informal settlements. The development of Neighbourhood Sustainability Assessment tools in developed Countries, has been presented in this research as a starting point to develop similar tools that will not only assess but also guide the development of a neighbourhood. Reports on the sustainability analysis of human settlements in the global south often present interesting and valuable outcomes such as guidelines and best practices, but those are not reflected in direct actions on the territory. Issues connected with the implementation of these guidelines lie in problems of governance, and the idea of developing a methodology that will directly connect the assessment phase with direct and tangible planning actions, is one of the possible option to overcome this problem. The research, through semi-structured interviews, collects the point of view of five professionals in the development fields and reflects their opinion through the discussion articulated in four thematic: (1) The failure of the planning practices, (2) The use of indicators as a guidelines for the development, (3) Sustainability as a process, and (4) The governance’s role in the planning practice. The scope of the thesis is not to define the content of the methodology, but to open a debate over the possibility of developing it. In order to do that, recommendations and guidelines for future research and for practitioners that currently deal with the upgrading of informal settlements have been elaborated.
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Master Thesis
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Giulia Sala. From neighbourhood sustainability assessment tools, to the upgrading of informal settlements in the global South : the proposal of a methodological approach based on sustainable indicators for guiding the planning practice. Architecture, space management. 2016. ⟨dumas-01419544⟩

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