Terroir of the unknown: exploring environmental geographies in scenarios of European inequality

Matthew Finch, Marie Mahon, David Robertson

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstract


How can geographers working on contemporary policy issues use scenario-building to address the environmental impact of social and economic transformations? What are the opportunities and pitfalls in creating a set of imagined scenarios to stretch current expectations of a region's environmental future?

This paper draws on the ongoing work of the Horizon 2020-funded IMAJINE project to explore a set of scenarios for 2048, designed to challenge conventional thinking around the future of inequality within the European Union, through the prism of sustainability studies.

IMAJINE's scenarios seek to investigate new and emerging forms of regional and territorial inequality within Europe by constructing plausible imagined futures. Each of these futures also suggests a significantly different set of environmental changes for Europe, as well as potential policy responses: from visions which echo the 1987 Brundtland report which inaugurated the era of "sustainable development" to other futures encompassing "Retrosuburban" community living, rustbelt permaculture, and a spatial patchwork of clashing and meshing environmental priorities and values.

In this paper, the authors will use the example of IMAJINE to explore the unfolding tensions and creative possibilities involved in devising scenarios which negotiate questions of "the environmental future" for policymakers and a wider stakeholder body.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages1
Publication statusPublished - 21 Aug 2021
EventRGS-IBG Annual International Conference 2021 - Virtual/Online, United Kingdom
Duration: 31 Aug 202110 Sept 2021


ConferenceRGS-IBG Annual International Conference 2021
Abbreviated titleRGS-IBG 2021
Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom


  • environmental
  • geography
  • futuring
  • sustainability
  • Injustice

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