Futuribles Journal n° 388

Territoires, réseaux

The Residential Economy in France up to 2040


Futuribles is continuing the series, begun in May 2012, which aims to reflect the “Territoires 2040” foresight exercise launched in France by DATAR in 2009. This month’s article in that series is a presentation of the lessons learned from the work of the study group on territories that have a residential and tourism-related economic base. Magali Talandier begins by outlining the importance of the residential economy for the local development of territories. She looks at the question at the heart of this working group’s thinking: “what future is there for the processes of residential and tourist development that are based on the capture of wealth created elsewhere, by virtue of the disconnect between sites of production and sites of consumption?”

Four possible answers have been identified, corresponding to the four scenarios outlined here: “Oases, Urban Domes, Rural Domes” (the scenario involving rootedness in the territory and reduced mobility, against a background of a service-oriented economy); “Spheres of Life or Functional Specialization” (the scenario of the local residential economy in which individuals move from one functional sphere to another with a cautious mobility, but an extension of peri-urban spaces); “Spots or Network Mobility” (combining mobility, fluidity and functional multiplicity of places, against a background of hypermobility and the loss of territorial cohesion); and, lastly, the “Web” or A-territorialization scenario (reduced movement, with multiple, but essentially virtual relationships to places) that marks the end of the residential economy and presents serious risks for social cohesion. Lastly, Magali Talandier details the contribution made by this group’s work on two major issues for DATAR: the quality of territories for a mobile society and the organization of networks and time.

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