Planning, history … and the environment? (editorial)

Gold, John Robert and Gold, Margaret (2023) Planning, history … and the environment? (editorial). Planning Perspectives, 38 (5). pp. 925-928. ISSN 1466-4518


We occasionally remind ourselves that Planning Perspectives’ subtitle states that it is 'an international journal of history, planning and the environment'. Most of that needs little clarification. The journal’s international character is shown, issue by issue, by its contents and editorial board. There is also no doubt about its commitment to planning and history, given that the planning process studied historically is a required feature in the articles that we publish. Where the reminder is perhaps necessary stems from inclusion of the words 'the environment'. When preceded by the definite article, a focus on the environment would seem to imply something rather different from what is normally seen in this journal - at least with regard to that term's contemporary meaning and emotive associations. It might well suggest planning historians pursuing acritical ecological agenda, taking their place alongside other scholars interested in issues such as climate change, disease control, deforestation, desertification, landscape conservation, urban environmental quality, and equitable resource distribution. These, it must be confessed, are not themes commonly articulated in the pages of Planning Perspectives.

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