Is there a cultural theory perspective on the COVID pandemic of 2020-21? Of course there is: Davy, Benjamin. "Social Distancing and Cultural Bias: On the Spatiality of COVID-19." Journal of the American Planning Association 87, no. 2 (2021): 159-166. https://doi.org/10.1080/01944363.2020.1824617
Thomas Hartmann writes in the journal Planning Theory on wicked problems and clumsy solutions in planning. Thomas Hartmann, 2012. Wicked problems and clumsy solutions: Planning as expectation management. Planning Theory August 2012 vol. 11 no. 3 242-256 Abstract In 1973, Horst W Rittel and Malvin A Webber introduced the term ‘wicked problem’ in planning theory. They … Continue reading Cultural Theory and Planning
Chatting with my young son this evening it occured to us that superheroes require certain types of cities, certain kinds of urban form, in order to thrive. Spiderman needs tall buildings closely packed in order to leap between them. The Hulk needs impressive edifices to knock down. Only certain types of urban form are fit … Continue reading Detroit: a city fit for superheroes?
The Child in the City, Anarchy in Action and Welcome Thinner City are three of the most influential books for the shape of my adult life. I'm mourning the death of writer and activist, 'giant of social commentary', Colin Ward. Ward's claim in Anarchy in Action (1973) that the international postal system was a perfect … Continue reading On the Death of Colin Ward
In this series about planning in Palestine we've looked at three alternative 'plans'. The first, thankfully, will never be built (although, chillingly, it's really just a vision of present segregated reality). The second may well be built (though it would take a dramatic turnaround in political will). The third offers a glimpse of a progress-free … Continue reading Beyond Enclaves in Palestine (Part 4)
What future can be planned for Palestine? So far in this series we've looked at a nightmare sci-fi segregationalism generated merely from revealing the implications of the Oslo Accords as architectural impressions. We've also looked at a much more positive spatial plan to develop a central north-south transit corridor, linking most of the main settlements … Continue reading Beyond Enclaves in Palestine (Part 3)
I’ve been struck recently by three somewhat contrasting visions of physical development for a future Palestine. Palestine. Perhaps nowhere else on earth has the philosophy of space been so consistently conceived as a weapon. The sophistication of the manipulation of space for military and political purposes in the West Bank and Gaza has made the … Continue reading Beyond enclaves in Palestine: Constructing the physical reality of territorial integrity (Part 1)