Planning as human development: resources, capabilities and responsibilities

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In recent years the debate on justice focused on the matter of (in)equality and on the challenge of advancing social justice (also) through the practice of urban planning (e.g. Fainstein 2010, Soja 2010). With this paper I wish to contribute to this debate by focusing on two central points, namely, (1) the interpretation of social justice, in planning, as a form of .spatial equality., and (2) the matter of defining the .equality of what?consistent with the mandate and scope of public planning. Drawing on Amartya Sen.s The Idea of Justice (2009) the paper retraces the origins of the debate on equality and summarizes the perspectives of two relevant philosophical lines of inquiry, namely, the resourcist and the capabilities inquiries. The former perspective approaches equality in terms of the resources at disposal of individuals and strives for defining the .social minimum. which should be equally allocated to all; t approaches equality in terms of the possibilities of realizing the .prioriti individual has in the concrete realm of her living environment. Whilst the former inquiry concentrates on the equality devised by essential goods and universal liberties, the latter concentrates on the .pathway to equality. achievable by acting on the si individuals with different . often, limited - capabilities. By recalling these two perspectives on equality the paper intends to promote a discussion regarding how the two respective evaluative frameworks do and could further inform the scope of public planning interventions.
Book of proceedings: Annual AESOP Congress, Definite Space – Fuzzy Responsibility, Prague, 13-16th July, 2015
Resourcism, Capability Approach, Responsibilities
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