Andrea Stickler (2017)


Politische Gleichheit in kommunikativen Planungsprozessen

  By taking a critical perspective on the communicative turn in planning theory it is examined how different societal inequalities can infect formally inclusive communicative planning processes. Thereby, communicative instruments and methods in planning can (re-)produce existing social inequalities. Based on a case study in Vienna the ambivalent effects of communicative planning strategies are discussed. The thesis concludes with questions that need to be further addressed in order to contribute to political equality in planning. 
  The communicative turn in planning theory has led to an increased integration of participatory instruments in todays practice of urban planning and urban development. Participatory processes by which a group is actively involved in the definition and design of its living environment are often claimed to be a central component of successful planning processes. Thereby opportunities for participation are proposed, which formally appear to be accessible for everyone. But structural social, political and cultural inequalities effect the public and create a gap between effective chances for participation and the democratic ideal of political equality. Criticism of the emancipatory potential of communicative planning instruments comes from different disciplines. Critical voices increasingly uncover the down sides of participation, stating they are not inclusive. This paper raises the question, to what extend the planning practice can learn from the criticism on communicative planning theory and thereby be developed further. In planning theory, different approaches are discussed, which desist from communicative planning and ask for alternative ways. Could these perspectives potentially contribute to political equality in planning processes? The following case study raises egalitarian questions based on an exemplary planning process in Vienna and addresses the emancipatory limits of its institutional setting. This provides findings on the ambivalence that underlies communicative planning and the potentially inherent structural exclusionary processes, that might constrain political equality in planning.
Submitted   at the Faculty of Architecture and Planning
Supervision   Dr. phil. DI (FH) Sabine Knierbein