Citizens as Expert Planners

This research investigates and values citizen-based knowledge in spatial planning processes within Greater Manchester and its local neighbourhoods. Through the research we want to:

  • Understand how planning works within Greater Manchester and local areas and how decisions get made.
  • Examine how citizen-based knowledge relates to the design and delivery of urban strategies and projects.
  • Work collaboratively with citizens and policy-makers to explore how that knowledge could more effectively inform and influence policy processes. 
  • Value different knowledge about urban developments through collaborating on an exhibition which represents citizens’ expertise about the places in which they live.


The research is based on a case study of planning processes in Greater Manchester. We will be using a series of mapping techniques to trace the process of developing spatial planning frameworks across Greater Manchester and within specific neighbourhoods. This will involve reading documents, undertaking interviews, holding focus groups and attending events. We will then work collaboratively to produce visual representations of processes, issues and ideas about spatial planning. These will be co-curated into an exhibition as part of the research. The exhibition is part of the research itself, to differently value citizen expertise, providing a space to reflect on, intervene in how the community in spatial planning.

for more information click on the links below