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Progressive Planning Alternatives for Unpromising Times

Matt Ball on January 10, 2014 - in Analysis, Planning

That we face unprecedented global crises is no longer in any doubt. What is in serious doubt is whether we have the capacity and genuine commitment to really change the way we think about, live, and plan for the places we live.

In the latest issue of Planning Theory and Practice, the Interface section, ‘Finding hope in unpromising times: Stories of progressive planning alternatives for a world in crisis’ by Libby Porter et al. brings together stories from around the world of people showing serious and genuine capacity, skills, innovation and commitment to imagining a more socially just, environmentally sustainable and economically ethical world. The Interface shows just how real alternatives to the trends of market-driven, profit-at-all-costs planning are being practised all around the globe.

Telling stories of different practices and possibilities from six different places and sectors, the contributors to this Interface show how the world could be otherwise.  Their stories tell us about the possibilities of genuine grassroots urban regeneration – for people, not for profit – as it is being practiced in Spain, and of the planning and land title tools that might be necessary to overturn centuries of oppression in Jerusalem. They tell of the possibilities of shared family housing to contribute to urban social and environmental sustainability, and the importance of collective grassroots action to holding those in power accountable in Australia. They also tell of the power of neighbourhood walks in Glasgow as collective moments of the production of critical knowledge about the city, as well as re-imagining the possibilities of public ownership of the infrastructure.

“This is a collection of stories of alternative practice that in the contexts in which they are operating offer genuine hope, inspiration and imagination for a world in crisis.”

For both planning practitioners and researchers, the Interface offers inspiration and practical know-how to practitioners, researchers and communities.

Read the full article online: http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/14649357.2013.853470

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Matt Ball

About Matt Ball

Matt Ball is founder and editorial director of V1 Media, publisher of Informed Infrastructure, Earth Imaging Journal, Sensors & Systems, Asian Surveying & Mapping and the video news site GeoSpatial Stream.

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