Academic journal article The Town Planning Review

Dialogues in Urban and Regional Planning

Academic journal article The Town Planning Review

Dialogues in Urban and Regional Planning

Article excerpt

Dialogues in Urban and Regional Planning, Bruce Stiftel and Vanessa Watson (eds), London and New York, Routledge, 2004, 384 pp., £80.00 (hb only)

In my presidential address at the first Joint Congress ACSP-AESOP in Oxford in 1991, I launched the idea of a world congress of planning schools. Exactly ten years later the first world planning schools congress was held in Shanghai. Talks between leaders of nine planning schools associations and the international steering committee for the Shanghai congress led ultimately to the establishment of a global planning education association network (GPEAN). This book is the first substantive product of this emerging global cooperation.

The nine organisations were responsible for the selection of the papers in this volume. The selection procedure reflects of course the tradition and the institutional maturity of each organisation. The editors were not actively involved in the selection of the papers, leading to a rather eclectic collection. One could look in different ways at this collection: at the themes raised, the focus, the colour of the contribution (theoretical, empirical, analytic, descriptive and critical), the places dealt with, and the literature sources. I have the feeling that the themes chosen are not always typical of the organisations. They vary from urban land-use, land markets, the aftermath of the Olympic Games, rural management, to rapid changing settings in a world metropolis, economic-ecological zoning, participation and diversity, the use of stories and normative theories and critical planning theory. The locations take us from the Brazilian Amazon to Shanghai, from Toronto to Sydney, but also from west Oxfordshire to Papakolea in central Honolulu. …

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