Volume 10, Number 1, 2014


Denis Martouzet

Forward (p. 13-25)

Camille Clément

The Suburban Agricultural Area: An Analyzer for the Complexity of the Territorial Constructions between Politics, Public Debates and Spatial Practices. A Case Study in the Lunel (Languedoc) (p. 25-57)

Résumé : This paper aims to shed light on the complexity of the territorial constructions and appropriations by crossing of political actions, public debates and spatial practices of the “communauté de communes du Pays de Lunel” (Languedoc, France). In suburbanization, this territory wants to confirm its existence by the affirmation of these agricultural and rural identities. In this way, they want to differentiate themselves from the two most important greater cities of the region (Montpellier and Nimes). It is by agricultural theme that a qualitative study of the SCOT (territorial coherence plan), a short supply chain project and a wine tourism project (political actions) were studied. This first approach aims to capture five public debates (study of the regional and local press) that are directly linked to the political choices made by this territorial authority. In the end, the study shows that these political actions and public debates must be linked with spatial practices. It is only at the scale of suburban farmland place that these three concepts can be related and show the complexity of territorial appropriations, an appropriation by the political (political actions and public debates) and an appropriation through practices.
Mots-clefs : Territorial appropriation, territoriality of political project, Camargue’s tradition, outdoor leisure activity, peri-urban agriculture

Aurélien Allouche

Territory Objectivization Cognitive Factors: Epistemic Relationships and Representations in Water Management in Camargue (p. 59-113)

Résumé : This article is an attempt to address the issue of territory by an emerging perspective in sociology: the study of cognitive and epistemic dimensions of governance and participatory democracy. In order to examine the integration of the inhabitants’ representations and of the lay knowledge in decision-making, it focuses on the collective work of objectification of the territory necessary to the collective management. Analyzing the epistemic and cognitive properties of objectification, the author identifies two processes limiting the integration of lay knowledge and local representations to the definition of the project territory: the dynamic of epistemic relations and the realization of the organizational learning by creating rules of management. The article relies on a case study corresponding to the collective water management in the Camargue (France, Bouches-du-Rhône) that necessitated the sociological inquiry of a participatory commission conducted from 2009 to 2012.
Mots-clefs : Territory objectification, participatory democracy, epistemic relations, organizational learning, Camargue

Lolita Voisin

To Govern Complexity? Landscape Study as Experience of Governance for Local Public Actors (Blois and Nevers, France) (p. 115-162)

Résumé :This article intends to question the processes of building a local public action. Using the example of three French mid-sized cities, the article highlights the mobilization of local stakeholders on a particular subject: landscape. Why and how is the landscape put in motion? By observing practice and speeches of stakeholders, it is the territorial organization under construction that seems emphasized, in particular through the groupings of conurbations. The article aims at opening new questionings concerning the capacity of landscape to govern the complexity of contemporary spatial phenomena and multiplied social and political expectations.
Mots-clefs : Public action, landscape, territorialization, stakeholders strategy, territory project

Marion Bourhis

Turquoise Economy, between Political Project’s Territory and Differentiated Territorial Representations: The Duty of Makink Links (p. 163-191)

Résumé : Often called as support of mobilization of collective action, the territory is polysemous in its definition. The general council of “Côtes-d’Armor” as a local and public authority relies on the administrative territory within its prerogative to implement its approach called “Turquoise Economy”. This aims to reaffirm and to strengthen the maritime ambition of Côtes-d’Armor while promoting an economic diversification based on an integrated management of maritime and coastline space and resources. However, although the general council is perceived as legitimate to intervene as a public authority, the territory of intervention has often been questioned by the stakeholder, whether or not they participate to the implementation of the policy. Based on our work, we will analyze the reasons of this lag and we will demonstrate how it can be overcome through a public policy thought in an inter-territorial perspective.
Mots-clefs :Turquoise economy, Côtes-d’Armor, territory, project, competencies, inter-territoriality, stackeholders, representation

Matthieu Adam and Georges-Henry Laffont

A Dialectical Approach for the Continuously Making City: Representations Confrontation of Designers and Inhabitants in Bottière-Chénaie Ecological Neiborhood (p. 192-235)

Résumé : This article aims to contribute to the characterization of the city production in the beginning of the twenty-first century. For this purpose, we model urban project under construction as a mediation process between the representations of its designers and receptors (inhabitants). Our goal is to understand how they are formulated and how they influence each other in order to comprehend why they do not join.
This dialectical approach emphasizes the multiplicity of meanings that can be given to material and symbolic properties of a territory. Through the analyze of the representations of the designers and inhabitants of the ecological neighborhood Bottière-Chénaie in Nantes, we will show the relationship between them and the need to go over the simplistic vision of the urban project as a linear process – design, realization, reception – and to incorporate models including the influences of effects on causes into the field of urban research.
Mots-clefs : Representations, urban project, modeling, dialectics, conceived space, received space

Claire Le Thomas

Perceptions of Artists on the Territory: Balle perdue (Lost Ball), a Tour-Performance of Dector and Dupuy (p. 237-281)

Résumé : Balle perdue (Lost Ball) is a happening achieved by two artists, Dector and Dupuy, in 2014. It consists in a guided tour of the fifteen kilometers between Caen and the English Channel. Through the concept of work of art-place, theorized by Anne Volvey, this paper analyzes this art work’s effects on the viewer’s spatial perception and the ways it creates some territory, cross-examining in return the complexity of this notion on a geographical point of view.
Mots-clefs : Territory, Caen, art, performance, spatial perception

Léa Sébastien

The Territory, a Socio-Patrimonial System Decoded by the “Actor in 4 Dimensions” Model (p. 283-329)

Résumé : The territory represents the duality between man and nature, mixing subjective and objective elements. For some authors, this polysemic notion makes less and less sense and should be abandoned. We propose on the opposite to deepen the analysis of this territorial complexity. To do so, this paper explores two complementary theses. On a theoretical basis, we define the territory as a socio-patrimonial system: an interactional nexus between social relations and what we call patrimonial relations (links to natural and cultural heritage). On a practical basis, we operationalized this definition through a model entitled the Actor in 4 Dimensions (A4D) which examines relations between humans and relations to non-humans on a specific area. The A4D leads to territorial footprints for each actor of the area, a synchronic radiography of their social and patrimonial links. This analytical model is a vector of data on the actors and of dialog between them; it can be of interest for researchers, mediators, administrators and for territorial actors themselves. Our results show that social relations depend on the context in which they are anchored and that man and nature relationships exist through social links. In order to decrypt what a territory is, this socio-patrimonial nexus should be more deeply decorticated by studying the attaches between nature and culture.
Mots-clefs : Territory, heritage, actor, social relation, patrimonial relation, territorial footprint