Accepted Paper:

Un-imagining the future: Exploring urban imaginaries of climate change in Jinja, Uganda  
Katie McQuaid (University of Leeds)

Paper short abstract:

In urban Uganda, narratives of climate change are interwoven with experiences of urban poverty that obfuscate not just the possibility of an immediate future, but the longer-term horizons for future generations. This paper argues for attention to how the future is un-imagined by urban communities.

Paper long abstract:

Drawing on ethnographic and community theatre work, this paper examines how an urban community in Jinja, a town in Eastern Uganda, understand climate change in the context of discussions about environmental change and an increasingly uncertain future. For many entrenched in urban poverty, narratives of climate change are inextricably interwoven with, and even eclipsed by, the difficulties faced by men and women as they navigate competing demands, and this paper thus argues for critical attention to how the future is un-imagined by urban communities. As discussions of sustainability and environmental conservation surface amidst a surging population, rampant deforestation and urbanisation, and increasingly erratic weather, this paper highlights the conditions which obfuscate not just the conditions of possibility of an immediate future, but the longer-term horizons for future generations; and thus have critical implications for developing tools and approaches in climate adaptation practice, and developing local interventions in building sustainable urban societies.

Panel P03
Climate Change and the Future: Exploring the 'Social Time' of Transformation through Scenario-based Practice