Transformative pragmatism: How a diversity of Leitbilder is harnessed for rural transformation in Réiden, Luxembourg

Jan-Tobias Doerr, Gerald Taylor Aiken

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This article attempts to further a geographical theory of socio‐ecological transformation. Understanding transformation has previously focused on regions, places, networks, or individual and collective spatialities as the unit of analysis pushing change. This article, by contrast, outlines the pragmatic function that individually and collectively held beliefs, goals, and purposes have. We call these guiding visions Leitbilder, and outline how they act as guiding lights, lodestars, that motivate, temper, and contain different people, groups, and initiatives. Where academic work exists here it is often voluntaristic, elective, focused on intentional, opt‐in communities and so tends towards studies of “usual suspects.” This paper by contrast, addresses those preforming radical environmentalist behavior, beyond a conscious or elective identity of being environmental. We do so by outlining the case of Réiden, Luxembourg.
Original languageEnglish
JournalEnvironmental Policy and Governance
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 16 Mar 2021


  • community
  • permaculture
  • place-making
  • practice
  • pragmatic ethics
  • Q-Method

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