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Rebecca Staats’ peer-reviewed publication “Planning with Uncertainty: place development of undefined becoming in south-west Sweden”

Contemporary planning contexts are characterised by complex and uncertain issues. There is therefore a need to develop planning methods that can respond to complexity and uncertainty. In her paper, the Heriland ESR Rebecca Staats considers the potential of a post-structuralist planning perspective as one way forward in addressing uncertainty and complexity in planning through a case study of platsutveckling [place development] in south-west Sweden.

Platsutveckling is an approach to place development planning in the context of regional development, implemented by the Swedish regional government Västra Götalandsregionen (VGR). Place development initiatives in VGR incorporate a participatory approach, actively involving local stakeholders to develop target place visions. The platsutveckling process also has characteristics of structuralist planning methods, with a strong emphasis on goal setting. The case is used to argue that a mindset shift is required to move forward with planning with uncertainty.

Conceptualising uncertainty-as-opportunity, the paper applies a post-structuralist planning perspective to the case study to consider how planning could respond in contexts with high levels of bottom-up, self-organised activity. The paper concludes with a discussion of the potential of a post-structuralist approach in complex and uncertain planning contexts.

The full article can be accessed here.

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