Exploring the usefulness of structural-functional approaches to analyse governance of planning systems

Potts, Ruth, Vella, Karen, Dale, Allan, and Sipe, Neil (2016) Exploring the usefulness of structural-functional approaches to analyse governance of planning systems. Planning Theory, 15 (2). pp. 162-189.

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Abstract

Existing planning theories tend to be limited in their analytical scope and often fail to account for the impact of many interactions between the multitudes of stakeholders involved in strategic planning processes. Although many theorists rejected structural–functional approaches from the 1970s, this article argues that many of structural–functional concepts remain relevant and useful to planning practitioners. In fact, structural–functional approaches are highly useful and practical when used as a foundation for systemic analysis of real-world, multi-layered, complex planning systems to support evidence-based governance reform. Such approaches provide a logical and systematic approach to the analysis of the wider governance of strategic planning systems that is grounded in systems theory and complementary to existing theories of complexity and planning. While we do not propose its use as a grand theory of planning, this article discusses how structural–functional concepts and approaches might be applied to underpin a practical analysis of the complex decision-making arrangements that drive planning practice, and to provide the evidence needed to target reform of poorly performing arrangements.

Item ID: 35687
Item Type: Article (Refereed Research - C1)
Keywords: analysis, complex systems, governance, planning, structural-functionalism
ISSN: 1741-3052
Date Deposited: 13 Oct 2014 04:23
FoR Codes: 07 AGRICULTURAL AND VETERINARY SCIENCES > 0701 Agriculture, Land and Farm Management > 070102 Agricultural Land Planning @ 20%
12 BUILT ENVIRONMENT AND DESIGN > 1205 Urban and Regional Planning > 120504 Land Use and Environmental Planning @ 30%
15 COMMERCE, MANAGEMENT, TOURISM AND SERVICES > 1503 Business and Management > 150303 Corporate Governance and Stakeholder Engagement @ 50%
SEO Codes: 94 LAW, POLITICS AND COMMUNITY SERVICES > 9402 Government and Politics > 940204 Public Services Policy Advice and Analysis @ 40%
97 EXPANDING KNOWLEDGE > 970116 Expanding Knowledge through Studies of Human Society @ 30%
94 LAW, POLITICS AND COMMUNITY SERVICES > 9402 Government and Politics > 940299 Government and Politics not elsewhere classified @ 30%
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