This research seeks the key mechanisms for the establishment of a sustainable society from the viewpoint of local politics. A case study was conducted for two ecologically friendly societies: Kitakyushu city in Japan and the Emscher area in Germany. Both societies suffered from severe environmental problems in the past, but recovered and became pioneering models of ecologically conscious societies over the past 100 years. The comparative investigations into their revitalization periods uncovered three commonalities: the presence of a symbol of an environmentally friendly society; a regional organization that manages projects with a comprehensive view; and the use of regional tangible and intangible resources created in the past. These three factors are considered important for achieving sustainable development in subnational societies in the future.
Keywords: Sustainable society, Analogy of history, Kitakyushu city, Emscher Park