Towards Structured Public Involvement: Enhancing Community Involvement in Transportation Decision Making
Although it is increasingly regarded as essential, public involvement in infrastructure decision-making has a highly problematic history. Public skepticism about the activities and motivations of planning and design professionals remains high. Arnstein’s (1969) famous “Ladder of Citizen Participation” is still a useful way of characterizing levels of public involvement, ranging from the ideal of “citizen control” to creeping “manipulation” by officials and powerful interest groups. While infrastructure problems involve a range of stakeholder groups and span a variety of scales, from the neighborhood transit-station design to large-scale regional highway-corridor selection, in many cases the public involvement processes and associated problems are similar.
KeywordsPublic Involvement Geographic Information System Citizen Participation Public Preference Design Professional
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