36th AESOP Annual Congress 2024 Paris, France
“GAME CHANGER? Planning for just and sustainable urban regions”


Public, private and third-sector actors in planning processes


  • Martine Drozdz,  Ecole des Ponts ParisTech 
  • Stefanie Dühr, University of South Australia
  • Sila Ceren Varis Husar, Slovenská technická univerzita v Bratislave

Public sector planning agencies are today operating in a shared power world. Declining capacities (and with it often declining in-house expertise) in the public sector have contributed to the rise of private sector consultants playing an increasingly significant role in plan-making and development assessment processes. At the same time, community groups and associations have become more concerned with changes to their urban environments, sometimes resulting in opposition movements that may significantly delay the implementation of urban development projects.

In this track, we are interested in the relationship between these different groups of planning actors and how their interactions are shaping planning decisions and urban development outcomes. We invite conceptual and empirical contributions that shed light on the sometimes conflicting and sometimes cooperative relationships between these actors. Contributions that deal with the current practices around how information and knowledge are produced and used by different actors in planning processes are welcome. In this track, we are keen to discuss the implications of the changing landscape of planning actors on the approach to managing urban planning processes and on the distribution of power between different actors in determining urban development outcomes. 

Please note that as part of this track on actor constellations more generally, a dedicated special session will be organised on the topic of “Urban planning and local democracy in the age of consultocracy ”, with a view to publishing selected contributions as a special issue of the journal Planning Practice & Research. Please indicate in your submission your preference for either the track on actor constellations or the special session on consultocracy. 

Keywords: planning agencies, consultants, public participation, power relations, urban politics, local democracy, planning knowledges.

This track will host: