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November 2, 2016

Development or democracy

The big conundrum at the heart of the planning system revolves around a perceived contradiction between development and democracy. Planners fear that if the community voice is given equal status in the system, as night follows day, all development will grind to a halt. And yet, communities are the lifeblood of that system and so it is untenable that they feel unable to engage fully within it. Scottish Government wants to understand more about the barriers that sit between communities and the planning system.  A series of public discussions is being held over the next month.



Are you interested in giving your views on how local people can help shape the places where they live?

An independent review of the Scottish planning system (May 2016) commissioned by the Scottish Government recommended that actions should be taken to ensure that community involvement in planning for place is fairer and more inclusive. 

A White Paper is due to be published in early 2017 outlining proposed changes to the planning system – including tackling barriers to greater involvement in planning, taking account of measures contained in the Community Empowerment Act and the Land Reform Act. 

As part of this work, yellow book, along with the Scottish Community Development Centre and Nick Wright Planning, have been commissioned to investigate the factors which inhibit communities, young people and other seldom-heard groups from engaging in the planning system.

We are keen to hear the views of as many people as possible who have an interest in how community involvement in the planning process can be encouraged, diversified and strengthened. We are keen not only to understand the barriers to better involvement in planning, but also the opportunities and benefits that better community engagement would present for communities and government.

We are running discussion sessions in Aberdeen, Edinburgh and Kilmarnock during November. We would very much welcome your contribution.

•             Scottish Storytelling Centre, 43-45 High Street, Edinburgh, EH1 1SR on Monday 14th November between 1:30pm and 4:00pm. To register for this event please click here

•             The Foyer, Marywell Street, Aberdeen on Tuesday 15th November 2016 between 6:30and 8:30pm. To register for this event please click here

•             WG13, 13 West George Street, Kilmarnock on Thursday 17th November 2016, 6:30pm-8:30pm. To register for this event, please click here

Your views will inform a contribution to the development of a White Paper which will be published in late 2016, following which a Planning Bill will be introduced in 2017.