Decision Making in City Planning: Processes of Visioning and Stakeholders Engagement and their Relation to Sustainable Land-Use in the SATURN Project

Alessandro Betta, Anastasia Nikologianni, Martin Berg, Marco Ciolli, Anna Ternell, Alessandro Gretter

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


    The EIT Climate-KIC SATURN project deals with rural-urban territories, their landscapes and environmental challenges. The land of our cities and regions is fragmented and prone to several challenges in terms of ecology, governance and social coherence. As a result of unregulated overlapping of different land uses and complex governance patterns, landscape fragmentation creates severe challenges in the ways the land is perceived, identified and therefore managed. The SATURN consortium is working on different models to help address the governance and decision-making process and support on a policy level by applying holistic ideas of visioning and stakeholder engagement at a city scale. The diversity of the three hubs (Birmingham in central England, Gothenburg in western Sweden, and Trentino in northern Italy) is reflected by their approaches to stakeholders? engagement and visioning processes as well as especially adopted activities in each location. Within the SATURN project, we are investigating how these approaches could change perceptions and impact on landscape strategic actions. Through a series of especially designed workshops on landscape visioning and stakeholder engagement, the project aims to create a toolbox supporting urban, peri-urban and regional planning. This paper reports on the visioning and stakeholder mapping and analysis tools, and shares examples where these processes were tested during the broader SATURN scheme. Results demonstrate how the visioning exercise has changed public perceptions about an area and how this has affected the decision-making process of each city towards a more effective planning of sustainable landscapes. The stakeholder engagement activity demonstrates the importance of ?mapping and analysis? of the various actors involved in a city and the ways a landscape project can effectively engage with them and seek further collaboration. Questions on how the results differ in cases where the stakeholder engagement process focused on a broad policy level or targeted specific actions for a certain region are being explored. Both the visioning and stakeholder engagement tools are subject to a holistic approach and a collaborative and open process between the stakeholders and the trainers, allowing the participants to build a vision for their regions and be one-step closer to systemic change.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)261-276
    Number of pages16
    JournalAthens Journal of Architecture
    Issue number3
    Publication statusPublished (VoR) - 1 Jul 2022


    • Decision Making
    • city planning
    • landscape
    • visioning
    • drawings
    • landscape architecture
    • funded project
    • EU project


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