Writing Planning History in the English-Speaking World

Authored by: Robert Freestone

The Routledge Handbook of Planning History

Print publication date:  December  2017
Online publication date:  December  2017

Print ISBN: 9781138856981
eBook ISBN: 9781315718996
Adobe ISBN:

10.4324/9781315718996-10

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Abstract

For a bespoke interdisciplinary field, planning history literature is rich and varied with its own heritage. The depth and scope of this historiography relate to the emergence and development of planning as a profession, a complex process unfolding at different scales, in different legal jurisdictions, and across variegated cultural settings. The emergence of modern planning in the English-speaking world is usually dated to the early 1900s as an integration of diverse reform agendas catalyzed by the many urban challenges posed by the impacts of industrialization. But although professional planning is essentially a 20th century activity, its roots are ancient. This partly explains the phenomenon of historical approaches and sensibility evident right from the beginning.

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