Cities as learning organisations in climate policy: the case of Malmö

J.L. Lenhart, S. Bouteligier, A.P.J. Mol, K. Kern

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

14 Citations (Scopus)


The complexities and uncertainties inherent to climate change place ecosystems and governance systems under pressure, in particular at the local level, where the causes and consequences of climate change play out. To address this complexity, local authorities have to be flexible, with an emphasis on learning and experimentation to lower greenhouse gas emissions and adapt to the challenges climate change poses – hence, they have to become learning organisations. Examining Malmö, this paper explores whether it has the characteristics to embrace and institutionalise learning and how this affects the development of its climate policies. The analysis finds several elements invaluable for Malmö’s innovative climate policies: climate strategies are incorporated within the city’s long-term vision to become a sustainable city: socially, economically and environmentally; dialogue and learning are emphasised throughout the process; and all stakeholders are involved, including external partners, leading to integrated approaches.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)89-106
JournalInternational Journal of Urban Sustainable Development
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2014


  • climate policy forerunners
  • learning organisation
  • local authorities
  • Malmö
  • sustainable cities
  • urban climate governance


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