Managing public space: A blind spot of urban planning and design

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Managing public space is a big and important blind spot of urban and regional planning and design. Important, because major transition challenges, such as climate adaptation, energy transition, circular economy, mobility, and governance require substantial changes in public space – both physical and social changes. Big, because managing public space entails enormous budgets and potentials over a long period of time in which management and maintenance takes place, which are largely spent operational and sectoral. A more integral and strategic
management of public space entails huge potentials, which are hitherto neglected in the academic debate on public space in general and that of cities in particular.
This contribution builds on explorative work on management of public space in academia and on a survey of Dutch managing public space practice and pleads for a more systematic academic debate and research on management of public space.
Original languageEnglish
Article number103032
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 2020


  • Public space
  • Asset management
  • Managing Public Space
  • Urban transitions
  • Wicked problems
  • Netherlands

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