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Archive | culture change

planners as honest brokers

How would you describe the job of a planner? Regulator?  Facilitator?  Broker? Manager?  Mediator?  Designer? Personally, I’m more of a broker.  At the moment I’m brokering between people with different visions for Moffat: residents, public agencies, businesses and landowners.  And elsewhere I’m brokering between different interests, too: between walking, cycling and vehicles in a redesign […]

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maximising planning’s potential

The Scottish Government’s planners are busy working on a new White Paper on planning reform, for publication by the end of the year. I think they should be congratulated for their innovative decision to draft the White Paper through co-production – a process which kicked off in mid September with a two-day workshop for planners, […]

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why we need to better integrate land-use and community planning in Scotland

This article first appeared in RTPI Scotland‘s journal The Scottish Planner (June 2016 edition). Better integration of spatial planning and Community Planning has been a hot topic in national and local government for the last year couple of years. There’s been lots of high-level talk about improving integration, including in the Planning Review report published in May. […]

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The politics of the planning profession

This blog post first appeared in The Scottish Planner (April 2016 edition). Why is RTPI Scotland spending so much effort on the Scottish Government’s Review of the Scottish Planning System and trying to influence Planning in the Next Parliament? At one level, the answer is obvious: to influence politicians, government, other professions and the media. And […]

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planning and entrepreneurship

Recently I was at an interesting meeting with Iain Scott of Can Do Towns and Scotpreneur, civil servants from the Scottish Government’s regeneration & planning divisions and RTPI Scotland. The subject of the discussion was how can planners and planning encourage entrepreneurial activity.  The contexts were, firstly, the undersung importance of small private and social enterprises to local economies […]

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new approaches to rural planning

In April 2012, I wrote a blog post arguing that UK planning policy for the countryside has generally emphasised landscape and biodiversity conservation over and above economic and social objectives. I suggested that, tacitly, national and local planning policy has conserved that rather British idea of well tended countryside with picturesque villages – a bucolic […]

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what our town centres really need

I’ve only caught one episode of BBC2′s Robert Peston Goes Shopping, but I’m glad I did. It sharpened my unease about the much vaunted “death” of the High Street. There are two facts that tend to get lost in this debate. Fact one: High Streets have always been places of change. The speed of that change may […]

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