Public participation in local urban renewal projects: an analysis of public participation in the Områdeløft of the Sundholmskvarter

Kristen Maddox

Studenteropgave: Semesterprojekt


In the second half of the 20th century a shift from managerialism to entrepreneurialism has occurred (Harvey, 1989). This shift has further developed since the state now encourages citizens’ involvement in addition to existing public and private partnerships (“Three waves of governance”, 20/12 2012). It has led to a democratic and communicative planning discourse of theory on public participation in planning processes, regarding urban development and urban renewal. However, there are also voices that claim that there’s a discrepancy between planning theory and practice (Pløger, 2004). This report aims to research how the democratic and communicative planning discourse compares with neighbourhood residents’ participation levels. In order to achieve this a case-study of the Sundholmskvarters Områdeløft is being used. Which structures are set out by the municipality for participation on a local scale? And to what extent do they succeed in their goals for citizens’ participation? The main conclusion of this report is that there are much similarities between the democratic and communicative planning discourse, and the Områdeløft program in the Sundholmskvarter. However, citizens‘ participation levels in the Sundholmskvarter Områdeløft are low. This raises questions on the legitimacy of the program, as it is set out to be fully driven by citizens. However, we found that the main reason for not participating among is a lack of time and/or interest from the citizens’ perspective. Therefore, a reconsideration of the democratic and communicative planning discourse is necessary for practical use in local urban renewal in Copenhagen.

UddannelserGeografi, (Bachelor/kandidatuddannelse) Bachelor el. kandidat
Udgivelsesdato22 jan. 2012
VejledereLasse Martin Koefoed


  • participation
  • Copenhagen
  • planning
  • urban renewal
  • public
  • regeneration
  • collaborative
  • urban planning
  • communicative
  • public participation
  • civic