Book chapter: Governance lessons from green niches – the case of eco-housing

walterhouseThis book  chapter looks at the history of eco-housing in the UK and contrasts it with building processes in the volume housebuilding sector. Over decades, eco-housing activists have cultivated a wide variety of social and technological  innovations in housing, including looking at housing as a site-specific, holistic process. In contrast, socio-technical configurations amongst volume house builders are much more standardised, generic, and rigid. These are features that make it difficult, but not impossible, for volume house builders to incorporate sustainability lessons from eco-housebuilders. The chapter considers which innovations travel from the eco-housing niche into the volume housebuilding regime, and the conditions under which housing could be transformed into the deeper sustainable forms sought by eco-house builders. The chapter was published originally in Murphy, J. (ed) (2006) Framing the Present, Shaping the Future: Contemporary Governance of Sustainable Technologies Earthscan, London: 89-109.