University of Twente Student Theses


Exploring and investigating the importance of participation in spatial planning.

Bebang, Bela Primus (2010) Exploring and investigating the importance of participation in spatial planning.

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Abstract:Spatial planning has long existed in administrative systems across the world and specifically in Europe where the name generated since the term spatial planning (SP) is non British in origin but an inspiration from German and Dutch languages. SP for this study was taken to mean the administrative regulation of land use and a tool that local authorities use to determined rights and obligations concerning urban functions and uses as well as to govern future development. Participation has become so prominent in spatial planning to the degree that it is embedded in government legislations and is becoming some sort of democratic rights for the citizens. In setting standards for urban development, SP merge the public, private and the civil society stakeholders to arrive at policy maps. This research investigated what has made SP peculiar that there is much prominence of public participation. The method used for this study has been content analysis of work done by planning professionals and scholars. Literature on administrative settings and legislation were the first focus followed by those on stakes in spatial planning and their holders and lastly a study on types of participation within spatial planning. The Findings of this study shows that governments are gearing towards transparency and in an attempt to gain trust of the public in SP that has to do with restrictive tools; government enters into partnership with individuals and group of individuals to carry out these plans within the various tiers of administration. Citizens understand that spatial plans are a win loose situation in which one stakeholder gains and another looses thus for the sake of protecting their stakes in SP, they tend to participate in order to be favoured in the process. Thus participation is of importance for government authorities as well since stakeholders in spatial planning since their stakes are so sensitive and also vital for the growth of the community. This study also reveals that, transparency has to be created by government and a sense of civility on behalf of the citizens since some sacrifices needs to be made during spatial planning leading to developments. Participation becomes necessary as the government tries to engage the civil society to gain trust via transparency while achieving its goals that are targeted towards spatial planning like urban and sustainable development. Even though SP has a price in terms of time and resources on the part of the individual and group of individuals, they readily participate in this planning in order not to keep their stakes at risk. SP practices are shaped by the dynamics of economic and social change, which give rise to demands for space, location, and for qualities of places. The government in attempt to carry out development that is sustainable in nature tries to work in partnership with stakeholders who are always willing to give in their support to protect their interests as well and this has let to the prominence of participation in spatial planning. Key words Spatial planning, participation, stakeholders, public participation, government and European Union
Item Type:Essay (Master)
Faculty:ITC: Faculty of Geo-information Science and Earth Observation
Programme:Geoinformation Science and Earth Observation MSc (75014)
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