Towards the residency; policy objectives and homework for the team

Hello @dkaplan @Tim_Reutemann @zazizoma @nadia @Nic010 , here are the next steps after our call:


  • We decided that we are going to do choose three sectors on which to focus our work. The three candidates are: private transport, residential building, agriculture. Rationale:
    • Private transport and residentiality are by far the greatest emitters according to the way emissions were measured in 2011 (by counting only the emissions of energy consumption, granted),
    • Agriculture appears not to contribute, but this only means that all the food consumed in Messina is imported.
  • Three groups of about 6 participants each.
  • We floated the idea that each group would look jointly at two of the sectors. This is to stimulate holistic thinking. There was no full consensus, but maybe we can all live with it?
  • Each group comes up with their own scenario. No need for mutual consistency, only internal one. This reduces coordination costs.
  • We spend a day just asking questions to people with local knowledge.
  • Facilitation must avoid that we write our pet obsessions onto a city we know nothing about.

Next steps

  • @alberto to share a draft of a briefing document.
  • Everyone to review – we need a turnaround of a few days here.
  • @Nic010 to ensure that local experts are present and we can spend time with them.
  • @Tim_Reutemann to look for resources to back-of-the-envelope quantify our scenario in Paris agreement terms. No need for precision, we are looking for large improvements, not marginal ones. Replace older cars with bicycles, not newer cars.
  • @dkaplan and facilitation team to update the agenda in the wiki.
  • @zazizoma can you think of any ABM application?

I’m sure I can, but this will be post event? Or prep for event?

Not sure… Ideally show something you already have at the event, and give a sense of how it could be used post-event. Maybe “future histories” could be inspired by ABM… it would be really inspiring.

Briefing for SFER - DRAFT

1. What we will work on

The residency’s work is applied to three sectors in the city of Messina. They are: private transport, housing, agriculture.

  • Private transport and housing are by far the greatest local emitters according to the way emissions were measured in 2011 (by counting only the emissions of energy consumption).
  • Agriculture appears not to contribute, but this is a statistical artifact: it only means that all the food consumed in Messina is imported. We think that striving for some degree of self-sufficiency in food production is going to be socially transformative and reduce global emissions and, more in general, environmental pressure. It also adds resilience to the city’s urban system.

2. Objectives and constraints

We aim to design initiatives that would lead to large reductions of the climate and environmental pressures due to these three sectors. By “large” think not 5%, but more like 50%,

Designs must be incentive-compatible. We should be able to imagine future histories of a Messina where our interventions worked, and those histories need to be narratively consistent.

No deus ex machina is allowed (Star Trek replicators, perpetual motion machines, infinite budgets etc.).

3. Method

  • We divide into three groups of six, each with a facilitator.
  • Each group is encouraged to look at two sectors, to encourage holistic thinking. So, group A (for Asimov?) could look at reforming private transport and housing; group B (Butler?) at housing and agriculture; and group C (Cixin Liu? Clarke?) at agriculture and private transport.
  • Different groups do not have to come up with consistent scenarios, nor to coordinate.
  • The Messina Foundation will involve people with local domain expertise, to brief us and to whom we can ask questions.
  • We spend the entirety of the first day exploring the Messina advanced social cluster, listening and asking questions. We want to avoid coming with pre-formed ideas and superimposing them onto a city we know nothing of.

4. Homework for participants (ahead of the residency)

  1. Indicate your preferred group. If you have domain expertise, that’s a plus. You might be asked to change group to have more or less equal numbers of participants in all groups.
  2. Bring resources that you find useful and inspiring. These should be about policies or interventions, like “15-minutes cities” or “climate corps”. Non-environmental policies are allowed.

Could you review @nadia @zazizoma @Tim_Reutemann @dkaplan @Nic010 ? I made it a wiki, so you can edit.

@gdavella FYI

Water infrastructure for Sicily.

Rossi1990MunicipalWaterSicily.pdf (1.9 MB)

@alberto @nadia @dkaplan @Tim_Reutemann @zazizoma
Hi All, here’s the news,
Yesterday I was told by @gdavella that the Foundation has some further local participants (in-house and strategic partners) who would like to join the residency.
We are talking about 4-5 people, thus a potential 4th subgroup. Problem: they are not fluent in English. Opportunity: they all are locally knowledged.

Do you envision a 4th thematic group, which could work (or at least discuss) mainly in Italian, without creating a two-speeds residency?
How could that look like…?

  • a 3rd+1 topic, related but untouching the scheme we decided, or
  • we re-structure in 4 groups, or
  • we split them in the 3 groups with other italian-speaking participants translating whereas possible.

In either 1st or 2nd option, I could be facilitator in this, if no-one else is available - and bridge to English any needed time or at the end.

Let me know your thoughts. @nadia , Alberto suggested your intervention.

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