This book examines the challenges in delivering a participatory planning agenda in the face of an increasingly neoliberalised planning system and charts the experience of Planning Aid England.
In an age of austerity, government spending cuts, privatisation and rising inequalities, the need to support and include the most vulnerable in society is more acute than ever. However, forms of Advocacy Planning, the progressive concept championed for this purpose since the 1960s, is under threat from neoliberalisation.
Rather than abandoning advocacy, the book asserts that only through sustained critical engagement will issues of exclusion be positively tackled and addressed. The authors propose neo-advocacy planning as the critical lens through which to effect positive change. This, they argue, will need to draw on a co-production model maintained through a well-resourced special purpose organisation set up to mobilise and resource planning intermediaries whose role it is to activate, support and educate those without the resources to secure such advocacy themselves.
"Parker and Street's well-informed book sets out an interesting proposal for securing greater justice within planning. It is sure to provoke intense discussion within professional and political circles." Huw Thomas, Cardiff University
"The book combines historical analysis of advocacy planning with a critical assessment of the current policy environment to provide both a must read and a rallying cry for all those committed to ensuring greater participation in the planning process" Sue Brownill, Oxford Brookes University
Gavin Parker is Professor of Planning Studies at the University of Reading, UK and has written extensively on the topics of citizenship and participation in planning, including neighbourhood planning. For two years (2012–14) he directed Planning Aid England.
Emma Street is Associate Professor of Planning and Urban Governance at the University of Reading, UK. Emma’s research focuses on urban governance, policy and planning, and architecture and urban design.
Introduction: engaging in planning
Neoliberal times and participation in planning
Advocacy planning: then and now
Advocacy and Planning Aid in England
Neo-advocacy and contemporary issues in progressive planning
Conclusion: embedding neo-advocacy in planning systems