Young Foundation Social Sustainability


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This presentation introduces a framework for creating socially sustainability places. Future Communities is a partnership between the Young Foundation and local partners in the UK, Europe and Asia, exploring how to make new communities places that work socially in the long term.

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Young Foundation Social Sustainability

  1. 1. Future Cities, Future Communities Practical ways to make new places socially sustainable SIX in the City, Singapore September 17th 2010 Slide 1 The Young Foundation 2010
  2. 2. •A new international partnership between the Young Foundation, local authorities, government agencies and housing providers •Exploring practical ways that new cities, towns and communities can succeed as communities where people want to live •Build a practical understanding of what can be done to encourage the factors that promote the idea of community, social networks, engagement, belonging and long term stewardship •Drawing on the best of what is known, and what is being explored, in the UK and internationally Slide 2 The Young Foundation 2010
  3. 3. What is a community? The mainstream view • Governance • Social and Cultural • Housing & the built environment • Economy • Environmental • Services • Transport & Connectivity Source: Egan Review: skills for sustainable communities, 2004
  4. 4. Our starting point: an alternative view • Physical boundaries to promote geographical identity • Rules and laws specific to the area, e.g. car free areas • Local myths & stories • Visible leadership • Strong social relationships, networks & bonds • Rituals and rhythms • Possibly shared belief system, e.g. garden cities, new towns, eco-cities
  5. 5. Partners and emerging work Slide 5 The Young Foundation 2010
  6. 6. Our partners •Homes and Communities Agency •Local Government Improvement & Development •Barking Riverside, Barking & Dagenham, East London •Lozells & Handsworth, Birmingham •Buckingham Park, Aylesbury Vale •Peabody Trust (Whitecross Street & Lillie Road estates, London) •Malmö, Sweden Slide 6 The Young Foundation 2010
  7. 7. Barking Riverside, East London – a large scale regeneration scheme that will house 26,000 people over the next 10 years Slide 7 The Young Foundation 2010
  8. 8. BarkingThe Young Foundation 2010 London Slide 8 Riverside, East
  9. 9. Testing new framework for designing in social sustainability Buckingham Park, 2010 Slide 9 The Young Foundation Aylesbury Vale, Buckinghamshire
  10. 10. Wired neighbourhoods: exploring local social media and building social capital, Slide 10 The Young Foundation 2010 Whitecross Street estate, London. Peabody Trust
  11. 11. Birmingham CC: Viewing lessons learnt from Community Land Trusts & seeing if it will work as a model for Birmingham. Lozells and Handsworth Exploring role for community land trusts to create local housing and build social capital The Young Foundation 2010 Slide 11 Lozells and Handsworth, Birmingham
  12. 12. Malmö,The Young Foundation 2010 Slide 12 Sweden
  13. 13. Building a business case for social sustainability •Work for the Homes and Communities Agency •Review of international evidence to create business case and practical tools for understanding & “designing in” social sustainability in new communities •Aim to influence stakeholders involved in creating new places: master planners, local government housing/regeneration/planning departments, central government departments, architects, developers Slide 13 The Young Foundation 2010
  14. 14. Evidence base •Review of international evidence and practical experience •Drawing on wide range of academic work, policy research, case studies and new town evaluations from UK, Europe, US, Egypt, Malaysia, China and India •What makes a flourishing community? •What works in creating successful new places? •What lessons can be learnt from the successes and failures of previous new communities? Slide 14 The Young Foundation 2010
  15. 15. A framework for social sustainability Slide 15 The Young Foundation 2010
  16. 16. Four key elements needed to create socially successful and sustainability new communities - alongside quality built environment, economic and environmental sustainability Slide 16 The Young Foundation 2010
  17. 17. Key findings from English new towns • World’s most sustained new town programme (1950s to 70s – 32 new towns created, 3 million residents) •Often tensions between newly arrived and established communities • Can take up to 15 years before residents establish social networks (evidence from Telford) •Social infrastructure and local support networks are crucial – for success and community wellbeing •Financial models make early investment challenging – requires new, long-term partnership approaches Slide 17 The Young Foundation 2010
  18. 18. Social Social & infrastructure cultural life Voice & Space to grow influence
  19. 19. Social Social and infrastructure cultural life + connection to local/ regional economy + green building, environmental innovation, incentives for pro-environmental Voice and behaviour Space to grow influence
  20. 20. 1. Social infrastructure •Need for services and support, not just buildings •Early provision is crucial •Lack of social infrastructure affects community wellbeing •Identity and reputation Slide 20 The Young Foundation 2010
  21. 21. What residents want from new communities 1. Good quality housing 2. Good schools 3. Safe, clean, friendly neighbourhoods 4. Community outreach workers 5. Pre-school childcare 6. Integrated social housing 7. Neighbourhood staffing 8. Supervised open spaces JRF (2006) Slide 21 The Young Foundation 2010
  22. 22. “… where these facilities were already in place when people began to arrive, the community came together and networks were formed more easily.” CLG, New Towns Review, 2006 Slide 22 The Young Foundation 2010
  23. 23. “ … most mixing across social groups takes places between children. It is these contacts … that provide opportunities to meet and form relationships.” CIH/JRF (2005) Slide 23 The Young Foundation 2010
  24. 24. Cambourne, New Town Blues “ … planning for hard infrastructure alone would never build a community … it would only be done by a matrix of formal and informal opportunities or supported activities.” Cambridgeshire PCT (2007) Slide 24 The Young Foundation 2010
  25. 25. 2. Social and cultural life • Community identity & belonging • Tolerance, respect, engagement • Pro-social behaviour • Good design supporting social life Slide 25 The Young Foundation 2010
  26. 26. Three factors necessary for sense of community 1. Length of residence 2. Local character 3. A shared common history Michael Young, New Earswick Slide 26 The Young Foundation 2010
  27. 27. Feedback circuits Home, neighbourhood & physical environment Religion and voluntary Power&politics orgs Family&friends Economy
  28. 28. “ … you can’t ignore group differences. You can’t pretend they are not there as the old colour-blind policies attempted to do. You have to acknowledge difference.” Miles Hewstone, 2007 Slide 28 The Young Foundation 2010
  29. 29. “ … the well connected are more likely to be hired, housed, healthy and happy” Michael Woolcock The Place of Social Capital in Understanding, 2001 Slide 29 The Young Foundation 2010
  30. 30. “Food & photos” Lessons from Balsall Heath and Haringey Slide 30 The Young Foundation 2010
  31. 31. 3. Voice & influence • Giving voice and influence at the planning stage • Shaping opportunities for influence • Maintaining structures and initiatives for the long term Slide 31 The Young Foundation 2010
  32. 32. HafenCity, Hamburg •Large-scale new residential & commercial quarter •Uses principles of environmental psychology to ensure it becomes a place where people will want to work and play • Appointed a sociologist to act as go-between and advocate for new residents Slide 32 The Young Foundation 2010
  33. 33. 4. Space to grow • New communities evolve slowly as social networks develop & populations age & shift • Master-planning needs to be flexible and adaptable • New communities need flexible use of land & buildings • Informal spaces & temporary uses should be encouraged • Local engagement & governance structures also need time to develop Slide 33 The Young Foundation 2010
  34. 34. Costs and consequences of failure Slide 34 The Young Foundation 2010
  35. 35. Slide 35 The Young Foundation 2010
  36. 36. Costs and consequences • High costs when communities fail – financial and social •Issues for wellbeing of communities (isolation, mental health, cohesion, fear of crime) • Problems with community cohesion • Stability, tenure and management • Cost of inflexible social infrastructure • Poor quality/inadequate facilities Slide 36 The Young Foundation 2010
  37. 37. •Social sustainability is an issue of public value – particularly now in context of global recession, population growth, rising housing demand •Cost of prevention and failure far outweighs early investment to create new places that will work in the short term and for the long term •Social supports are relatively low cost – Milton Keynes evidence indicates £700 per new household for social infrastructure Slide 37 The Young Foundation 2010
  38. 38. Our challenges • Integrate thinking about social sustainability to professional practice across all agencies and stakeholders involved in creating new communities • Put people first - change the way places are designed and built •New financial models – change the focus on short term returns and focus on long term stewardship Slide 38 The Young Foundation 2010
  39. 39. For more information about Future Communities contact: Slide 39 The Young Foundation 2010
  40. 40. About the Young Foundation The Young Foundation brings together insight, innovation and entrepreneurship to meet social needs. We have a 55-year track record of success with ventures such as the Open University, Which?, the School for Social Entrepreneurs and Healthline (the precursor of NHS Direct). We work across the UK and internationally – carrying out research, influencing policy, creating new organisations and supporting others to do the same, often with imaginative uses of new technology. Slide 40 The Young Foundation 2010