Journal issue co-edited by Vincent Lagendijk

Vincent Lagendijk co-edited a special issue of the Journal of Modern European History, together with Liesbeth van de Grift (Utrecht University) and Stefan Couperus (Groningen University). The issue ‘Experimental Spaces – Planning in High Modernity’ comprises an introduction and four contributions, zooming in on localised planning practices in inter-war and post-WWII Europe.

This special issue shows that a belief in (state) planning and in the creation of coherent social orders emerged on the left as well as the right, under democratic and non-democratic regimes alike. Moreover, it argues that a decentred, governance-focused approach to planning, which takes into account not only expert discourses but also practices, forces us to thoroughly reconsider notions of the state, the planning agents as well as the planning recipients. The articles cover cases of London-based health centres, the rebuilding of the bombed cites of Coventry and Rotterdam, planned rural settlements in Romania, Turkey and Italy, as well as transport regulation in German and British regions. The case studies cover a wide variety of scales and geographies of planning history, which, taken together, contribute to a richer understanding of planning as a historical and analytical category.

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