1: What is planning and who are the planners?

This opening chapter provides an overview of what planning seeks to achieve and the type of outcomes that can be achieved if it is practised successfully. It presents some of the global challenges that planners are having to respond to, such as those relating to climate change, urbanisation, environmental degradation, and deteriorating health and wellbeing. The chapter presents some of the goals and principles that are being advanced for planning today, and exposes some of the tensions that can arise when planning for the ‘public good’. The planning profession is also introduced, with the chapter providing some insight about the education and training of planners and the knowledge, skills and behaviours they are expected to have.

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