A Planning Palimpsest: Neoliberal Planning in a Welfare State Tradition



In this article, we analyse the evolution and transformation of Danish spatial planning from its tentative origins in liberalist politics, through its rise as a central feature of the welfare state project, to its more recent entrepreneurial forms in a context of neoliberalisation. The article demonstrates how transformations of Danish spatial planning discourses and practices must be understood in context of previous discourses and practices sedimented as layers of meaning and materiality through time and over space. These layers do not completely overlay one another, but present a palimpsest saturated with contradictions as well as possibilities. We propose the notion of the ‘planning palimpsest’ as a helpful metaphor for drawing attention to the historical-geographical characteristics of planning discourses and practices


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Helen Carter - Aalborg University

Henrik Gutzon Larsen - Lund University

Kristian Olesen - Aalborg University

How to Cite
Carter, H., Larsen, H. G., & Olesen, K. (2015). A Planning Palimpsest: Neoliberal Planning in a Welfare State Tradition. European Journal of Spatial Development, 13(3), 1–20.