This article proposes a model of eco-innovation that emphasizes the role of users and regulation in the development and diffusion of eco-innovationproducts, by comparing the diffusion of two e-bike companies, CEP and Lvyan, from China and France.These cases show that diffusion of eco-innovation in China and France is strongly linked to the institutional context and specific consumer needs, highlighting the importance of involving users in the development and diffusion of eco-innovation in order to satisfy market demand, and increase profit and competitiveness in niche markets. It also shows that, to achieve a comprehensive picture, institutions and policy makers should adopt a coevolutionary approach to regulation that includes consideration of technology, uses and practices.The case of CEP reveals that regulation appropriate to the market fosterscompanies‟eco-innovation;compared to the case of Lvyan which shows that irrelevant regulation can become a barrier to the diffusion of eco-innovations such as the e-bikes.The superior„ snob effects‟ of the French market are discussed and compared with the„ bandwagons effects‟ noted in the Chinese market.
Anaïs Collet & Philippe Simay & translated by Oliver Waine, « Urban Studies in France », Metropolitics, 11 September 2013. URL : http://www.metropolitiques.eu/Urban-Studies-in-France.html (accessed 25 September 2013)
Can French research into cities and urban territories truly be considered “urban studies”, in the cross-disciplinary sense of the term understood in English-speaking academic circles? The history of the “urban” social sciences in France and the institutional structure in place have shaped the production of research, which remains largely confined to traditional disciplines and steered by “social demand” and objectives with a number of blind spots. What are the specificities of French urban research, and what developments could lie ahead in this field, in light of practices elsewhere in the world?
Heathcott, Joseph. (2013) The Promenade plantée : politics, planning, and urban design in postindustrial Paris. Journal of Planning Education and Research. Prepublished May, 24, 2013, DOI: 10.1177/0739456X13487927
Abstract This essay examines the Promenade Plantée in the context of the broader effort to remake Paris for a Postindustrial Age. It traces the political, social, and economic forces that shaped the Promenade’s architectonic form over time, from the production of a national rail system in the nineteenth century to the decline and dereliction of rail lines after World War II, to the reformatting of disused infrastructure in the 1970s and 1980s. Finally, the essay considers the mix of public and private interests that shaped the project’s design, adaptation, and use within the large-scale redevelopment of Eastern Paris.
Read full text on SAGE Journals Online (restricted access)
- Joseph Heathcott is associate professor of urban studies at Eugene Lang College, The New School (New York, USA)
- La Promenade plantée on Wikipedia
- La Promenade plantée on Paris City Hall website (in English)
When visiting Paris, Chinese tourists are often struck by the absence of skyscrapers within the historic centre. The height of buildings in Paris is limited by the municipality. Although there has recently been some discussion about constructing higher buildings, the Eiffel tower still dominates the city. Until now, skyscrapers have, for the most part, been located outside the city itself, for example in “La Défense”, a business district. The only skyscraper in Paris is the “Montparnasse” tower. Last week, we celebrated the 40th anniversary of its construction. By Chinese standards, this skyscraper is rather small (210 meters), but it is the second tallest building in France.
Forty years ago, there were active demonstrations against its construction, and even today a certain resentment about it remains. There is a joke claiming that the best view of Paris is from the Montparnasse tower, because from there you obviously cannot see the tower.
I remember visiting this tower when I was a child. I was very impressed by the view. But at that time, I did not know that an entire district had been torn down to develop this new project. This old district was not a typical one, but had a strong artistic significance. During the first half of the 20th century, many world-famous artists lived and worked in Montparnasse. Most of their workshops disappeared because of the construction of this tower.
Even though it has been renovated, the Montparnasse tower, the symbol of France’s post-war prosperity, appears rather dated. We can well imagine that if the older Montparnasse district had been preserved it would have become a very distinctive Parisian quarter with a special atmosphere and many art galleries to attract tourists; it would thus have become a stronger Parisian symbol than the Montparnasse tower.
I am not writing about the Montparnasse tower in order to blame the developers. Of course, cities need to change; otherwise they would simply become open-air museums. However, in both Europe and China, municipalities need to plan urban re-development carefully, always taking into account the long-term consequences. The consequences of development, in social, cultural and economic terms, may be more costly than the preservation of the older districts.
Felix Torres, avec la collaboration de Boris Dänzer-Kantof (December 2011), Le chemin partagé : une histoire d’EDF en Chine (1983-2011) (The shared path. An EDF history in China 1983-2011),Paris : François Bourin, 416 p. ISBN : 978-2-84941-247-3
A history of EDF’s experience in China over the course of three decades, from nuclear to hydraulic, from thermal generation to cooperative studies and projects of all kinds.
Contents of the book
- Choosing to build a Western nuclear power station in Guangdong (1978-1985)
- Building and launching Daya Bay (1986-1994)
- Helping China to equip itself (1984-2000)
- EDF, partner to the Chinese electrical system reform (1984-2000)
- Shandong, Guangxi : becoming an investor and operator in China (1993-2005)
- From Daya Bay to Ling Ao (1995-2005)
- China remains the world’s largest electricty market (2000-2005)
- China helps EDF’s progress (2006-2010)