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Exploring a city's potential low carbon futures using Delphi methods: some preliminary findings

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This paper describes a Delphi methodology to generate a number of broadly consensual low carbon scenarios for 2050. This approach to ‘creating’ the future, rather than predicting, is useful when dealing with profound and uncertain change over a long period of time and is therefore suited to carbon management. The methodology is described, and the first stage of the consultation process is discussed with reference to its application in the UK city region of Bristol. Findings from the first round have resulted in the identification of seven working scenarios and patterns in the responses of individuals from different backgrounds, suggesting that strong world-views and agendas are present within groups. Subsequent rounds of a questionnaire and a backcasting workshop will refine these working scenarios and identify pathways to achieve them.
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Keywords: Delphi technique; carbon management; cities; low carbon futures; scenarios

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Faculty of Environment and Technology, University of the West of England, Coldharbour Lane Bristol, BS16 1QY, UK 2: Institute of Earth Sciences, University of Iceland, Reykjavík, Iceland 3: Bristol Futures Group, Bristol City Council, Create Centre, Smeaton Road Bristol, UK 4: Centre for Sustainable Energy, 3 St Peter's Court, Bedminster Parade Bristol, BS3 4AQ, UK

Publication date: October 1, 2012

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