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The Limits to Communicative Planning Theory: A Brief Introduction

The Limits to Communicative Planning Theory: A Brief Introduction


Symposium The Limits to Communicative Planning Theory: A Brief Introduction Mickey fauria Even before the communicative turn in planning theory could gain hegemony, scholars began to challenge its theoretical and empirical legitimacy. The first calls for a more encompassing interpretation came from practitioners of a political economy perspective (see essays in Lauria 1995). Many of these authors criticized communicative planning theory for ignoring the constraining and facilita- tive role of societal institutions in their interpretation of planning practice. Charlie Hoch (1997) responded that planning practice need not be interpreted through a political economic lens to be insightful, while Patsy Healey outlined a framework that takes societal institutions seriously while maintaining a focus on communicative practice (Healey 1997a; 1997b; 1999). A second and more penetrating challenge came during sessions at the 1998 Oxford Planning Theory conference (see comments by Yiftachel 1999; Throgmorton 1999). The papers in this symposium were first presented at that conference. In "New Paradigm or Old Myopia? Unsettling the Communicative Turn in Planning Theory," Huxley and Yiftachel lay to rest the claims to theoretical hegemony but more importantly offer propositions to explicate debatable positions that foster a critical examination of planning practice. Crucial to this critical
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