How to deal with populists? Democratic and planning theoretical perspectives in view of planning practice and research

Authors

DOI:

https://doi.org/10.14512/rur.77

Keywords:

Democratic theories, communicative planning theory, rational planning theory, agonistic planning theory, roles of planners

Abstract

The rise of populist forces like the German Alternative für Deutschland (AfD) presents a new challenge to spatial planning because of its potential for conflict in substantial and procedural terms. Drawing on democratic and planning theory, this article compares three theoretical perspectives on populism and planning in order to draw a conclusion on the implications for planning practice and theory. The theories consulted are elitist, rational-technocratic theories, deliberative, participatory theories as well as radical democratic-agonistic theories. If we are to translate theses perspectives into planners’ hypothetical courses of actions, a nuanced picture of possible strategies of action in dealing with populist actors and tendencies comes about. Planning practitioners may choose strategies like ‘ignoring’, ‘arguing’, ‘integrating’, ‘excluding’ and ‘profiting from’ populists. As such, planners and populists might become allies sharing a common interest in re-politicizing current conditions. Concluding, with said theoretical perspectives in mind, the contribution offers topics and questions for further research.

Published

2021-06-07

How to Cite

Thiele, P., & Leibenath, M. (2021). How to deal with populists? Democratic and planning theoretical perspectives in view of planning practice and research. Raumforschung Und Raumordnung | Spatial Research and Planning. https://doi.org/10.14512/rur.77

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