Everyday governance and urban environments: Towards a more interdisciplinary urban political ecology

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  • University of Lausanne


Urban political ecology (UPE) has mainly evolved within the discipline of geography to examine the power relations that produce uneven urban spaces (infrastructures and natures) and unequal access to resources in cities. Its increasingly poststructuralist orientation demands the questioning of received categories and concepts, including those of (neoliberal) governance, government, and of the state. This paper attempts to open this black box by referring to the mostly anthropological literature on everyday governance and the everyday state. We argue that UPE could benefit from ethnographic governance studies to unveil multiple state and non-state actors that influence the local environment, their diverse rationalities, normative registers, and interactions across scales. This would also to enrich and nuance geographical UPE accounts of neoliberal environmental governance and potentially render the framework more policy relevant.


Original languageEnglish
Article numbere12310
JournalGeography Compass
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2017