What factors affect public participation in the urban redevelopment planning process in China

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Since 1978, China has experienced almost the largest scale of urbanisation process in human history due to the demand of rapid economic development (Campanella, 2000). During the last three decades, urban planning in China led by the government had pursued high economic growth rather than higher living conditions of urban residents (Li, 2012). Now, China has entered the later stage of accelerated urbanisation which is identified as the “decelerating, transformative, and diversified” period. It is important to be human-oriented, adaptable to local conditions and environmental friendly in urban planning (Yang and Chen, 2015). In this “New Normal” era, more factors can be involved in the urban redevelopment planning process. Public participation, as one of these factors, plays an increasingly essential role in urban regeneration. Smith (1973, pp275-295) describes participatory planning as a democratic process supporting value creation, definition of communities and development of residents’ identity, leading to a harmonious society. In the United Kingdom, the “Town and Country Planning Act” passed in 1947 stipulated public participation as a legal step in urban planning, which protected the public rights in the urbanisation process. This participation lead to better policies and implementation decisions in urban planning (Irvin and Stansbury, 2004).
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