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Urban Planning Participation: Linking Practice and Theory

Björn Malbert (Institutionen för stadsbyggnad)
Göteborg : Chalmers University of Technology, 1998. ISBN: 91-7197-658-2.- 168 s.

Continuing efforts to apply, at the local level, the Agenda 21 mandate of the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development in Rio de Janeiro, in 1992, provide good illustrations of problems typical in contemporary public planning and decision-making in many European countries. The claims for participatory decision-making and the coordination of decision and action among diverse actors and stakeholders constitute challenges to established public planning systems. From a point of departure in planning practice, this thesis approaches planning theory in a search for a theoretical framework to meet these problems and challenges. A tentative framework is set up and used for the analysis of empirical findings as well as a discussion on new professional tasks and roles in urban planning. The main methods are reflections on practice, studies of literature, and case studies. The emerging discourse on a communicative approach in planning theory is described and discussed. For application in planning practice, however the question of methodology as well as the role of planners re-quires greater attention. Alternative approaches in operational research can be used to structure problems, identify decision domains and involve stakeholders in learning and consensus-building processes. However, difficulties arise when the number of issues and participants increases. Both the intentional use of innovative practice and the conscious design and use of new social settings generate opportunities; however these are seriously affected by obstacles related to different types of uncertainty and power-relations within the public planning sys-tem itself. The process of developing forms and styles for participatory decision-making, involving actors and citizens outside the public planning system, requires a parallel process directed at coordination and cross-sector learning within the public planning system. The tasks and roles of planners will change. The intentional design and use of innovative social settings guided by sensitive and creative process leaders is a feasible approach; there is a need for a specific professional competence, to facilitate and guide such learning processes. There is also an urgent need for both development work and empirical research to explore possible planning methodologies, useful forms of organisation and leadership for social change processes that involve diverse actors and stakeholders in a shared-power world.

Nyckelord: urban design and planning, communicative planning theory, planning methodology, strategic choice approach, participatory decision-making, tasks and roles of planners, reflective practice and research, sustainable urban development, local Agenda 21, shared-power situations, complexity, uncertainty and conflicts in urban planning

Denna post skapades 2006-08-25. Senast ändrad 2013-09-25.
CPL Pubid: 960


Institutioner (Chalmers)

Institutionen för stadsbyggnad (1900-2003)



Chalmers infrastruktur

Ingår i serie

SACTH : stadsbyggnad, arkitektur, Chalmers tekniska högskola 1998:1(A)

Doktorsavhandlingar vid Chalmers tekniska högskola. Ny serie 1390