Urbanized deltas as complex adaptive systems: Implications for planning and design

E. Dammers, A.K. Bregt, J. Edelenbos, H. Meyer, B. Pel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

16 Citations (Scopus)


This article argues that it is relevant to apply the complex adaptive system approach to urbanized deltas. On the basis of this, it discusses some important planning issues related to these areas: adapting them to changing circumstances, synchronizing the various sectors in the areas, and organizing collective action to realize this. The paper also suggests how planners can be er deal with these issues: by systematically exploring uncertainties related to future trends and disruptive events, by thinking through the impacts of each sector on other sectors and the area as a whole, and by making joint visions and identifying strategic projects not only among public actors but also with private and civic actors. The approach presented, integrating social, ecological and physical aspects of systems, is relevant for planners as well as scientists.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)156-168
JournalBuilt Environment
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2014


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