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Open Access Publications from the University of California


  • Author(s): Leigh-Preston, Nancy
  • et al.

With this issue, the Berkeley Planning Journal officially enters its third year of publication. Established as a vehicle of communication between the Berkeley planning community and the profession-at-large, this journal-and those existing now or in the future at other schools of planning-can be of increasing value to the academic planning field over the coming years. The field, itself, to use a term popular in economic development these days, is in a period of "restructuring." Restructuring implies more than simple evolution or gradual change; it implies crisis and adjustment to forces of decline. Planning schools have experienced steady declines in enrollments over the last decade. The public sector to which the planning discipline has traditionally been oriented has been steadily shrinking under the forces of Reaganism. Whether, and how, the planning field will survive is not clear. Perhaps it even depends (dare we say it?) on how well we plan. The by-now old cliche of "muddling through" more than aptly describes the developmental history of the planning field and its schools. Further, this unplanned path (to use Alonso's phrase) may just lead to extinction.

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