Key Concepts in Planning forms part of an innovative set of companion texts for the Human Geography sub-disciplines. Organized around 20 short essays, Key Concepts in Planning provides a cutting edge introduction to the central concepts that define contemporary research in Planning. Involving detailed and expansive discussions, the book includes: An introductory chapter providing a succinct overview of the recent developments in the field; Over 20 key concept entries with comprehensive explanations, definitions and evolutions of the subject; Extensive pedagogic features that enhance understanding including a glossary, figures, diagrams and further reading

Key Concepts in Planning is an ideal companion text for advanced undergraduate and graduate students in Planning and covers the expected staples of the sub-discipline in an accessible style. Written by an internationally recognized set of authors, Key Concepts in Planning is an essential addition to any geography student's library.

Interests and the Public Interest

Interests and the public interest

Related terms: stakeholders; consensus; rights; conflict; power; elites; community; national interest; representation; participation; exclusion; public goods


This chapter focuses on the notion of interests and more specifically the idea of the public interest as a term that has been used to justify planning practice and intervention. Given the wide rhetorical use of the ‘public interest’ and long history in providing a legitimating concept for planning (see Friedmann, 1973; Howe, 1992; Klosterman, 1985), it is important to explain its meaning and usages. Booth, for example, called for ‘a wider debate on the nature of the public interest expressed in the land-use planning system’ (2002: 169), in order to clarify and make more transparent the thinking and rationale for ...

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