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Planning, state building, and the days after in Palestine

Kareem Rabie

situation, state-scale planning is fundamental to how Palestine is crafting its future political, economic, and social orientation toward its land, polity, Israel, and the world. Since Oslo, Palestinian planning has taken a few different approaches that map

Open access

Material Compromises in the Planning of a ‘Traditional Village’ in Southwest China

Suvi Rautio

in preparation for the first Chinese Traditional Village Summit, which initiated a series of inspection trips of higher-level officials. During such events, the results of local development, planning, and preservation policies are exhibited to outside

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Planning as a form of enclosure

The ambiguities of nonproductive accumulation in the West Wales countryside

Elaine Forde

Enclosure, a historic and contemporary accumulation regime, is part of a global conversation about what resources are, who may use them, and for what purpose. Here, it is suggested that spatial planning extends the practice of enclosure in its approach to land use. This article focuses on Wales's strategy for sustainable development (OPD), which theoretically promotes low-impact developments. Ethnographic research explored how OPD applicants navigate different people and organizations with a stake in the character of land, and how OPD applications are rarely approved. The data reveals a tension between the notions of self-provisioning and planned development, but indicates how activists circumvent and adapt the planning system. This article extends the notion of what counts as accumulation by focusing on the nonproductive value of an unspoiled countryside, a notion central to debates about the production of the countryside as leisure space and the enclosure of nature under global sustainable development regimes.

Open access

Futures on Dry Ground

Anthropology and Coastal Planning

Theodore Hilton and Sheehan Moore

Restoration Authority (CPRA), charged with creating and updating the state's fifty-year, $50 billion Coastal Master Plan. While Louisiana's planning efforts remain a high-profile case of state mobilization against coastal land loss, they are far from the only

Open access

“The Museum is for All Cultures”

Monologue and Multivocality—The Dilemma of the Nambya Community Museum in North Western Zimbabwe

Munyaradzi Elton Sagiya and Plan Shenjere-Nyabezi

Nambya Community Museum. The issues we present and discuss in this article emerged during a Volkswagen Foundation-funded, large-scale archeological and heritage management research project directed by one of us (Plan Shenjere-Nyabezi). This project

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Plan International's Digital Empowerment Campaign

Unlocking Healthy Futures for Girls?

Jacqueline Potvin and Laura Cayen

Introduction In April 2018, children's rights organization Plan International launched its Digital Empowerment for Girls campaign. The campaign aimed to close the technology gap between girls and boys and to increase girls’ access to digital

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“The Master Plan is a Master Killer”:

Land dispossession and powerful resistance in Oromia, Ethiopia

Gutu Olana Wayessa

This article examines a popular resistance of the Oromo people against a specific plan called the Addis Ababa and Oromia Special Zone Integrated Master Plan (hereafter, the AAMP or the Master Plan), which is connected to wider issues of political

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Even governmentality begins as an image

Institutional planning in Kuala Lumpur

Richard Baxstrom

This article considers the complexity of contemporary urban life in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, through an analysis of planning and the plan itself as a thing in this environment of multiplicity. It argues that the plan functions as a vehicle for action in the present that does not require a singular vision of the future in order to succeed. Plans in the context of governance and urban development gesture to “the future,” but this gesture does not require “a future” in order to function in a highly effective manner. The evidence presented indicates that the primary effectiveness of the plan largely relates to its status as a virtual object in the present. Such virtual objects (plans) bind subjects to the conditions of the present within the desires and limits asserted by the institutions seeking to dominate contemporary life in the city, but this domination is never absolute, singular, or complete.

Free access


Anthropologies of planning—Temporality, imagination, and ethnography

Simone Abram and Gisa Weszkalnys

Recent anthropological approaches to temporality and spatiality can offer particularly important insights into established planning theories. In this introductory essay, we consider planning as a manifestation of what people think is possible and desirable, and what the future promises for the better. We outline how plans can operate as a particular form of promissory note, and explore how plans may be seen to perform a particular kind of work, laying out diverse kinds of conceptual orders while containing a notion of the state as an unfulfilled idea. The task of the ethnographer is to chart the practices, discourses, technologies, and artifacts produced by planning, as well as the gaps that emerge between planning theory and practice. We consider the changing horizons of expectation and the shifting grounds of government in different phases and forms of neoliberalization that are characteristic of planning in the contemporary world.

Free access

The Usefulness of Interactive Governance for Underground Planning

Ehsan Nouzari, Thomas Hartmann, and Tejo Spit

policy process, governments give stakeholders the ability to respond to plans and provide input on decision making ( Edelenbos 2005 ; Edelenbos and Meerkerk 2016). Within spatial policy making, this form of interactive governance is mainly used as an