Social Ethics of Landscape Change: Towards Community-Based Land Use Planning


Troy D. Glover, William Stewart, and Katerie Gladdys


In Qualitative Inquiry, 2008 14: 384


Understanding stakeholder values is crucial to the development of a community-based model of landscape change. Be that as it may, engagement techniques are still in their infancies, and land-use planners are struggling for tools to facilitate discourse on public values related to landscape change. Accordingly, this article responds to urgent needs to define planning processes that represent the values of stakeholders, empower communities, and lead to landscape changes that maintain and enhance a community’s sense of place. It does so by exploring the combination of photo elicitation and narrative as a form of civic science aimed at engaging citizens in the planning process. Findings from a study incorporating these techniques are used to show the merits of this participatory form of inquiry. The authors argue the use of stories, unlike traditional public engagement techniques, allows the landscape change process to be situated within the social meanings relevant to a community.


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Park Development on the Urban-Agricultural Fringe


William Stewart, James Barkley, Andrew Kernis, Katerie Gladdys, Troy Glover


In Journal of Park and Recreation Administration, Winter 2007


Park planning in contexts of an urban-agricultural fringe is about the re-development of land and requires a transformation from a worked landscape into land suitable for a park. Distinct from the wildland-urban interface where planning is often about protecting what is, urban-agricultural contexts is about envisioning what should be. Because of the need to imagine a park, place meanings and landscape values are important to identify in urban-agricultural contexts of park planning. The empirical portion of the study assesses participants’ lived experiences in the landscapes of their daily lives. Place meanings are embedded in these lived experiences. The paper applies a participant-based or autodriven photo elicitation method—referred to as APEC—as a means to identify and encourage participants to share their lived experiences and to understand their place meanings. Data were collected from two groups of participants—one group was associated with the USDA Midewin National Tallgrass Prairie on the outer fringe of the Chicago metropolitan area, and the other was associated with the Urbana Park District Advisory Committee in Urbana, Illinois, a midsize urban area in east central Illinois. Participants at both sites represented places meanings in ways that appreciated human history, were tolerant of human development, and indicated a need to heal the land. These place meanings provided two principles for envisioning parks on the urban-agricultural fringe. The first principle is that park development should embody public memories of the landscape and provide the community with a sense of its ecological and cultural heritage. The second principle is that park development should allow for the community-based restoration of ecological and cultural heritage, and in doing so, would allow for a healing process. These values are distinct from many other contexts of park development in which the vision for a park is more immediate and planning decisions are focused on visitor management techniques and use policies. The urban-agricultural context of park planning requires public deliberation about the vision of a park and dialogue that creates public value for the vision. This study works to construct public values for parks on the urban-agricultural fringe.

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William Stewart, University of Illinois, James Barkley, University of Illinois
Andrew Kerins, University of Illinois, Katerie Gladdys, University of Florida, Troy Glover, University of Waterloo


2007 Leisure Research Symposium Abstracts, National Recreation and Park Association Congress, 2007



The process of park development in places where urban land uses meet agricultural communities elicits divergent reactions from stakeholders (Wilkinson 1991). Developing forums for stakeholders to share public values for local landscapes, and to learn other values is an important step in building community and advancing park planning.


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