Growth target as a barrier to knowledge integration and provision of alternative scenarios in urban planning

Tiina Merikoski*, Aija Staffans, Simo Syrman

*Corresponding author for this work

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The complex task of urban planning requires multidisciplinary knowledge co-creation. Due to the urgency of climate change mitigation and the threats environmental changes pose to urban areas, effective knowledge integration is ever more important to understand the systemic effects of planning solutions. The findings of an interview study conducted in 2020-2021 suggest that many interrelated challenges and barriers hindering the co-creative knowledge production in planning practice exist. One barrier seems to be the time constraints the planners struggle with, which is connected to the strategic and political planning targets emphasising growth. In this paper, this concern is further explored: How have the planning targets of the City of Helsinki been formulated in three of the publicly available strategies and policy papers guiding urban development? Is the pressure to grow overriding the qualitative aims set for achieving the highly anticipated sustainability transformation? Conclusions indicate a need for an open discussion concerning the planning targets of cities: Is the target to produce detailed plans in high numbers, or to aim for the best quality in the urban living environment and to meet the ambitious sustainability goals?
Original languageEnglish
Article number012012
JournalIOP Conference Series: Earth and Environmental Science
Publication statusPublished - 22 Dec 2022
MoE publication typeA4 Conference publication
EventEmerging Concepts for Sustainable Built Environment - Online, Helsinki, Finland
Duration: 23 Nov 202225 Nov 2022


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