Spatial Planning and Well-being: a Survey on the Swiss Case [Tesi di dottorato]
Politecnico di Torino, 2018-05-14

This research starts from the premise that it is important to understand the relationship between the operation of spatial planning and life satisfaction, and to identify how they are effectively connected. It therefore brings together two concepts often considered separately, or connected in an axiomatic way, in the literature: spatial planning and well-being. This separation or simplification, although understandable as convenient from a disciplinary viewpoint, requires attention, since the promotion of citizens’ well-being objectives traditionally lies at the heart of spatial planning legitimation. One of the aims of the research is to try to develop an analytical framework which will enable us to better understand the connection between efficient and sustainable spatial development and well-being. In order to do this, the study explores and frames the relationship between a spatial governance and planning system and its performance from a place-based perspective, taking into consideration recent trends and innovations. Yet every country has its own spatial planning system embodying different administrative, legal and social traditions. Switzerland, the country chosen for the survey, is an interesting country to study from a spatial governance and planning point of view, because of its historical, geographical and cultural features, as well as its reputation for a high level of administrative and organisational efficiency. However, it currently faces a number of spatial planning challenges, which can also affect the present and future well-being of its citizens, such as urban sprawl and other land use issues. In order to understand the nature of the Swiss planning system, a four-dimensional model (Janin Rivolin 2012, Cotella & Janin Rivolin 2015) is applied. It is presented and analysed in terms of structure, tools, discourse and practices, to shed light on the factors underpinning the planning system and its functioning; and likewise on the extent to which the quality of life of the country is intertwined with the efficiency and effectiveness of its planning system. As in many other countries, spatial planning methods and issues in Switzerland have changed considerably in recent years, so the planning process is moving towards a more strategic and flexible management of the territory. Yet, the country also has a number of specific features which make it unique, such as its strong tradition of direct democracy and its positioning in the heart of Europe, but outside the EU. In relation to spatial planning, indicators measuring the outcomes of a policy or the performance of a planning process may help to provide information on whether the process is getting better, worse or staying more or less the same, therefore supplying data that could be used to evaluate its efficiency. However, choosing indicators useful for policy-making can be complex. The research examines this issue in depth as regards the Swiss case, in terms of spatial governance and planning, focusing especially on the three dimensions of economic, environmental and social well-being. The interactions between spatial planning and well-being in the country are then looked at as regards these dimensions in order to assess spatial planning’s influence and impact. The study provides a state of the art overview of the Swiss system and reappraises the country’s collocation in European planning classifications. Among its findings, the research suggests that reliable measurements on the connections between spatial planning and well-being could be useful for policy-making. It also endorses Zetter’s (2008) assumption that the planning system makes a positive contribution to Switzerland’s high economic, environmental and social standards.

diritti: info:eu-repo/semantics/openAccess
In relazione con info:eu-repo/semantics/altIdentifier/hdl/11583/2707935
Settore ICAR/20 - - Tecnica e Pianificazione Urbanistica

Tesi di dottorato. | Lingua: Inglese. | Paese: | BID: TD18041469