Town Planning Review

Which aims and knowledge for spatial planning? Some notes on the current state of the discipline

Town Planning Review (2014), 85, (4), 513–532.

Abstract

By bringing together several strands of planning debate, offered by key thinkers and protagonists, the paper aims to establish a platform for retheorising the crucial bridges between substantive vs. process-related knowledge. Focusing on the former, it explores to what extent we can speak of a form of knowledge that is specific to land use / spatial planning. If such knowledge exists, what were perceived to be its main features in the past? The paper first addresses the relationship that planning entertains with other fields of knowledge, and the difficulties one encounters when trying to define spatial planning as a discipline in its own right. It then moves on to consider how planning activities relate to the realm of political decision-making. Finally, it provides some schematic examples of what planning knowledge may usefully comprise if defined as outlined below.

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Mazza, Luigi

Bianconi, Marco