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Victoria K. Wells, Diana Gregory-Smith and Danae Manika

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Lasse Gerrits and Stefan Verweij

We argue that infrastructure projects are complex and that evaluations of such projects need to do justice to that complexity. The three principal aspects discussed here are heterogeneity, uniqueness, and context. Evaluations that are serious about incorporating the complexity of projects need to address these aspects. Often, evaluations rely on single case studies. Such studies are useful because they allow researchers to focus on the heterogeneous, unique, and contextual nature of projects. However, their relevance for explaining other (future) projects is limited. Larger-n studies allow for the comparison of cases, but they come with the important downside that their relevance for explaining single projects is limited because they cannot incorporate heterogeneity, uniqueness, and context sufficiently. The method Qualitative Comparative Analysis (QCA) presents a promising solution to this conundrum. This book offers a guide to using QCA when evaluating infrastructure projects.

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Lasse Gerrits and Stefan Verweij

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Marina van Geenhuizen, J. Adam Holbrook and Mozhdeh Taheri

This chapter presents the theme, theoretical approaches and overview of the chapters in the book. The theme is the contribution of cities (their actors) to increased sustainability in social-technical systems, eventually by accelerating sustainability improvements. The selected systems are energy, transport and healthcare. Cities may act as the cradle of key inventions, as places of up-scaling and commercialization and as places of quick adoption, though few individual cities take up all these roles. Next, several urban innovation theories are introduced, including agglomeration and cluster theories, and the relational (collaboration) approach, with the aim to ‘position’ the chapters. Specific attention is given to the entrepreneurial ecosystem approach. Complementary approaches are institutional and governance perspectives, in particular with respect to cities acting as institutional innovators. A final approach is the evolutionary approach, as invention, up-scaling, commercialization and adoption of new technology are concerned with long time-lines and manifold uncertainties.

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Tim Stephens

The Anthropocene brings with it a risk of environmental disasters at scales not previously experienced. This chapter argues that disasters caused or made worse by climate change are appropriately addressed under the rubric of international climate law rather than global disaster policy. A turn to generic disaster risk reduction in response to the risks of climate disasters in the Anthropocene is no substitute for the urgent task of reducing greenhouse gas emissions in order to meet the objectives of the 2015 Paris Agreement on Climate Change. Instruments such as the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction, as important as they are, can offer only wishful thinking when it comes to the governance of environmental disasters in the Anthropocene.

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Roger Fouquet

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Anna Vypovska, Laura Johnson, Dinara Millington and Allan Fogwill

This chapter discusses key environmental and Indigenous peoples’ issues facing development of the natural gas and liquefied natural gas (LNG) industry in the Province of British Columbia, and examines the main approaches to mitigate, manage and monitor these issues effectively. The authors reviewed environmental assessment applications for 29 major natural gas and LNG projects in British Columbia that have undergone a typical environmental assessment process with the provincial or federal responsible authorities since 2010, as well as the content of primary regulatory documents and issues identified in relevant case law. The key environmental issues identified from the review include significant residual adverse effects related to greenhouse gas emissions; significant residual adverse effects and cumulative effects to rare and threatened wildlife species; and cumulative adverse impacts of natural gas development. The most common potential adverse impacts on Indigenous peoples’ interests summarized in the review include but are not limited to effects on health and socio-economic conditions; physical and cultural heritage; the current use of lands and resources for traditional purposes; sites of historical and archeological significance; and potential cumulative impacts on Aboriginal interests. The chapter also provides examples of key approaches to mitigate the foregoing issues and stresses the importance of effective consultation and engagement with Indigenous groups at early stages of the proposed projects development.

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Jennifer I. Considine and Mary Lashley Barcella

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Jennifer I. Considine

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Evan Hamman

The aim of this article is better to understand the relationship Japanese people have with birdlife, wetlands and environmental law. The article uses a case study of the Japanese ‘red-crowned’ crane (the tancho) and Ramsar sites in Eastern Hokkaido to examine Japan's environmental governance systems and actors and the extent to which they utilize the principle of public participation. The topic is significant because of the urgency with which wetlands and birdlife are being lost in East Asia and the impacts such loss will have on communities and national identity. The observations in this article have relevance for neighbouring Asian countries like China and Korea, both of which have their own cultural perceptions and legal protections to consider.