Manual Joint Knowledge Production

Poverty, limited resources, increasing ill-health, social exclusion and other problems which accompany the development of cities are complex. They can be described as wicked problems and need to be addressed with an approach to problem-solving which exploits and combines various types of experience and knowledge. Joint knowledge production is one approach.

But how can joint knowledge production be initiated, designed and implemented? How can the results be evaluated in a way that makes it possible to judge whether they really contribute to more sustainable urban development? To begin to answer these questions we have collected our experiences from the first years in a Manual of Joint Knowledge Production for Urban Change. It is based mainly on the five pilot projects that were conducted in Gothenburg 2010-2011. 

Knowledge producers

Mistra Urban Futures acknowledges the fact that everyone is a knowledge holder, everyone is a knowledge producer and everyone is a knowledge user. The idea with joint knowledge production lies on a foundation that combines the knowledge from both practice and research. The combination of different perspectives has great potential but can also cause problems if one is not aware of the differences in perspectives. Some challenges that might arise are:

  • To accommodate different evaluations concerning sustainable urban development.
  • To exploit the breadth of knowledge and expertise which exists among stakeholders.
  • To create arenas for legitimate and sustainable transformation processes.

Every project for joint knowledge production is unique, created by those how take part in it and constrained by a number of practical circumstances. We hope that this manual will prepare project participants for difficulties they may encounter.

The Manual is written by Lotten Westberg, Merritt Polk and Annie Frid. Download the full text version or browse through the web version below.

Manual of Joint Knowledge Production for Urban Change
Gemensam kunskapsproduktion för urbana förändringar (Swedish version)