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Archive | culture change

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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collaborative approaches to town centres: what should planners do differently?

This article was published in the Scottish Planner (August 2013), the journal of RTPI Scotland. I was RTPI Scotland’s representative on the Fraser Review of town centres, which reported to the Scottish Government in July 2013. The government’s response is due at the end of September 2013. But most importantly, the planning system cannot nurture the other ingredients that make […]

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power-sharing in place-making

Over the last five years, co-production and collaboration have become popular – the concepts of people and organisations working together to make better places, with a focus on action. For some examples, look through the case studies in the excellent Compendium for the Civic Economy or the winning projects of last month’s SURF regeneration awards. There’s clearly no […]

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community empowerment and planning

The Scottish Government is currently consulting on its proposed Community Empowerment and Renewal Bill; this paper is a contribution to that discussion. It has been jointly written with Hugh Moore, who has been chair of Giffnock Community Council in East Renfrewshire for a number of years. As well as being Community Councillors, both Hugh and I are […]

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