Frameworks for citizens participation in planning : from conversational to smart tools

Horgan, Donagh and Dimitrijevic, Branka (2019) Frameworks for citizens participation in planning : from conversational to smart tools. Sustainable Cities and Society, 48. 101550. ISSN 2210-6707

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    Abstract

    The paper concentrates on tools and technologies used for participatory processes in sustainable urban planning. Scotland’s Place Standard, BREEAM-Communities assessment tool and the Smart City technologies for co-production in urban planning and design are analysed through literature review. Aktivniy Grazhdanin, a citizen engagement portal, established to devolve decision-making on aspects of Moscow’s urban planning to citizens, provides a case study on the potential use of online tools to solicit citizens’ views on the city management and transformation. Tools were selected as they provide participatory frameworks for developing consensus among decision makers and stakeholders on planning strategy, but use different methods - Scotland’s Place Standard initiates a dialogue with interested groups; BREEAM-Communities includes a consultation with stakeholders at a later stage; and Aktivniy Grazhdanin attempts to solicit stakeholders’ views by using online tools. Comprehensive criticism in the research of Kitchin (2014) and Angelidou & Psaltoglou (2017) identified themes around ownership, governance and participation that informed the line of questioning in the case study. The research highlights the strengths and weaknesses of the analysed tools. It recommends how frameworks can be best shaped by such tools to achieve local ownership and provide structure for a more inclusive urban planning.