Measured visualizations as catalysts for mobilization: Public engagement in municipal planning for climate change was a two-year (2011 – 2012) social mobilization research project funded by the Pacific Institute for Climate Solutions (http://www.pics.uvic.ca/) . This work developed and tested new methods of 3-d modeling and visualization to deepen community engagement and understanding of the qualitative and quantitative relationships between urban planning options and carbon emissions. The project asked, “would public understanding and acceptance of smart growth improve if citizens were provided with timely, accessible visualizations about why and how it can help achieve energy reductions?”
A research team from the School of Architecture and Landscape Architecture (SALA) and the School of Community and Regional Planning (SCARP), in partnership with the City of Revelstoke, engaged community residents around testing smart growth retrofits for Revelstoke. Groups of approximately four people used the Touch-Table to create their design scenarios collaboratively. Participants responded favorably to the medium, the visualizations, and to the collaborative learning the process enabled. Their design solutions improved the smart growth and energy related performance of the study areas in the first workshop, but additional energy knowledge and metrics provided in a second workshop had mixed results.
This project provided content for a secondary project climateSMART communityWISE. To learn more about the climateSMART communityWISE project, click here.