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The Cambridge Room: engagement and inclusion in spatial planning

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Flora Samuel is the Professor of Architecture (1970), Head of the Department of Architecture at Cambridge University and a Fellow of Darwin. Working across practice and academia she was formerly Vice President for Research at the Royal Institute of British Architects. Her current research focuses on inclusive planning, the subject of her most recent book Housing for Hope and Wellbeing. She leads the Public Map Platform a major Green Transitions Ecosystem project funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council.

Planning consultation typically takes the form of a tick box exercise, one that typically elicits responses from around 2% of the population. This talk describes a series of pragmatic research projects that have sought to improve inclusion in spatial planning, culminating in a discussion of the Cambridge Room, an ‘urban room’ for Cambridge – its aim being to foster inclusive debate between communities, local authorities, universities, industry and practice. The particular focus of the room is on the inclusion of children and young people in decision making about their areas and on the making of maps as the basis of an evidence based planning system.

Video recording available

This talk is part of the Darwin College Erasmus Seminar Series series.

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