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Mainstreaming equality into strategic spatial policy making: Are town planners losing sight of gender?

Greed, Clara; Reeves, Dory


Dory Reeves


Spatial planning authorities have a pivotal role in shaping the built environment, through the production of development plans and the operation of the development control system. Previous research shows that the needs of women have not been given as much attention as those of men in the formulation of planning policy. Yet European Union directives and United Kingdom government guidance require local authorities to mainstream gender considerations into spatial policy-making. This paper draws on research undertaken for the Royal Town Planning Institute on the extent to which gender mainstreaming is taking place within planning authorities. A qualitative approach was adopted to identify those factors facilitating or restricting adoption. It was found that a generic, rather than gendered, approach to mainstreaming prevails. Gender is given a relatively low priority relative to other over-arching policy considerations, such as environmental sustainability or racial equality. A cameo study of the Greater London Authority demonstrates the difficulties encountered by even the most progressive planning departments. It is concluded that for gender considerations to be taken seriously by planners, legislative and procedural reforms are required, along with cultural change within the wider context of the construction industry. © 2005 Taylor & Francis.


Greed, C., & Reeves, D. (2005). Mainstreaming equality into strategic spatial policy making: Are town planners losing sight of gender?. Construction Management and Economics, 23(10), 1059-1070.

Journal Article Type Article
Publication Date Dec 1, 2005
Journal Construction Management and Economics
Print ISSN 0144-6193
Publisher Taylor & Francis (Routledge)
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 23
Issue 10
Pages 1059-1070
Keywords urban planning, gender, local authorities, policy implementation, development plans, London, Greater London Authority, planning departments, gender
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