Diversity in the sustainable City of Tomorrow

While the need for green transitions has gained widespread acceptance, the social dilemmas of such a process are also becoming increasingly clear: one person’s sustainability may be another person’s inequality. Indeed, recent years have shown that well-meaning climate initiatives may have unintended consequences: Green technologies and services are often unequally distributed among populations, and CO2-taxations risk burdening those who have the least.

As the recent Yellow Vest uprising in France—and, on a smaller scale, the resistance against offshore windmills in Denmark— have shown, taking account of how climate initiates may be met with public resistance will be a critical element in the successful sustainable transition. How will it be possible to lower the consumption of meat, reduce air flights, without, for instance, excluding certain demographic groups? Departing in scenarios of future climate initiatives, presented by anthropology students from the University of Copenhagen, this panel will discuss how to ensure that urban climate responses across the globe fosters a transition which benefits all and not only the privileged.


Martin Lidegaard, former Foreign Minister of Denmark and co-founder of the green think-tank CONCITO.

Kathrine Richardson, Professor and Head of the Sustainable Science Center, University of Copenhagen.

Anders Blok, Associate Professor in Climate Sociology, Department of Sociology, University of Copenhagen.


Henrik Hvenegaard Mikkelsen, Assistant Professor, Department of Anthropology, University of Copenhagen.


This event is organized by the Center for Sustainability and Society, University of Copenhagen and the Smart Cities Accelerator project and is part of the C40 World Mayors Summit 2019 in Copenhagen, 9-12 October.