Transitions in Risk Society: Regional Case of Gujarat Solar Park

Wednesday, 13 July 2016: 09:24
Location: Hörsaal 50 (Main Building)
Oral Presentation
Thounaojam SOMOKANTA, centre for studies in science, technology and innovation policy, India
This paper begins with certain research questions, how significant the theory of risk society in the field of geography of sustainability transitions? why Gujarat solar park makes an entry point of regional transition thinking? Transition  theory  what  so  called Multi  Level  Perspective  (MLP)  are  not  able  to  answer  these  questions  because  of  their  national focused  approach and also pay less attention to theoretical understanding of risk. This paper has criticized MLP on the ground of missing geographical dimensions where transition activities are embedded. Second generation Multi-Scalar MLP has been proposed to address the Gujarat solar energy transition at the regional level. In this background, Gujarat solar park has been selected for empirical case analysis. The geographical location of solar park has become an important space where solar energy transition takes place, characterized by the establishment of a new sets of socio-technical configurations in the form of  networks,  learning,  social  practices,  experimentation,  visions  and expectations  of  the  niche  actors  and  institutions. Transition towards sustainability at the regional scale is an essential step for achieving sustainable low carbon society. Theoretically, Ulrich Beck’s term environmental bads and side effects (such as climate change, air pollution and green house emissions etc.) have been challenged in the age of reflexive modernization of risk society by transition thinkers and practitioners at the local settings.