Reading the Image - Endorsing Co-Creation in Planning Competitions?

Tiina Merikoski


Planning of towns and communities is a holistic and interdisciplinary task during which many qualities are examined, such as political, economic, social and ecological aims. Furthermore, the need to create paths towards more sustainable communities and living environments has made the requirement for an effective multidisciplinary cooperation and co-creation in planning ever more important.

In order to investigate sustainable communities and to find transformative solutions, requirements have been included in planning competitions, which demand a multidisciplinary approach. However, the culture of these competitions is embedded in the architectural tradition. Thus, architectural knowledge production dictates how competition proposals are created, and the input of professionals representing other key disciplines is at risk of not being effectively included in the proposed designs.

This argument is supported by evidence from a research project investigating an open international planning competition held in Finland in 2011. The results suggest that planning competitions need to be reformulated in such a way that multidisciplinary co-creation is supported more effectively.

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