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Managing community engagement: A process model for urban planning

Konsti-Laakso, Suvi and Tero Rantala

European Journal of Operational Research, 2018, vol. 268, issue 3, 1040-1049

Abstract: Today's society stresses the importance of public participation and the management of large stakeholder groups. To confront this challenge, community operational research (community OR), as a structured approach, could help. In this paper, we propose a process model for managing community engagement in urban planning. The model builds on ideas of facilitative modeling, problem-structuring methods and innovation management. The model is empirically validated through a case study setting, where a local entrepreneurial community was engaged in an urban regeneration plan for a city centre area in Finland. One reason for utilizing community engagement in the urban planning process is related to decreasing boundary critique, and especially preventing later conflicts. The results of the study indicate that the constructed and utilized process model was useful. The current literature on community OR recognizes that the use of transparent processes enabling dialogue between participants, accepted as fair by the stakeholder groups, has been shown to make a significant difference in people's acceptance, even when they might disagree with the outcome of the decision. Based on the results of this study, this seemed to also be the case in the urban planning context. The findings of the study also reveal that an open innovation-based strategy and methods can bring new insights into collaboration practices in the context of community engagement and urban planning.

Keywords: Community operational research; OR in government; OR for community development; Problem structuring (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2018
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Handle: RePEc:eee:ejores:v:268:y:2018:i:3:p:1040-1049