The City of Copenhagen aims to become the first carbon neutral capital in the world by 2025. Ten per cent of the total
CO2-reduction target is to be achieved through energy retrofitting of existing buildings in the city. This article reports
from an action research study in the urban renewal section in Copenhagen City Council where planners struggle to
promote more and better energy retrofitting projects in the urban renewal scheme. The study finds that planners in fact
approach green retrofitting as a ‘wicked problem’ that requires new solution strategies targeting the complexity of developing
new retrofitting standards and solutions in the existing urban renewal framework. The analysis shows how planners’
strategic responses are challenged by competing worldviews concerning the role of urban renewal and the problems
and potentials of green retrofitting in practice.
Keywords: Wicked Problems, Green Retrofitting, Urban Renewal, Area-Based Regeneration, Urban Planners.
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