'The Journal of Transdisciplinary Environmental Studies' (TES)
Volume 2, Number 1, Nov. 2003

ISSN 1602-2297

National Environmental Planning in the
Third World: Sustaining the Myths?

By Henrik Secher Marcussen
Dept. of Geography & International Development Studies, Roskilde University, Denmark
E.mail: hsm@ruc.dk

Abstract: The argument presented in this article is that current environmental planning perpetuates the myth that we can control the environment. Based on a number of empirical evaluations of the design, formulation and implementation of contemporary environmental plans, the article shows how these myths are perpetuated and presents, more conceptually, some recent critical discourses on the concept of planning. Fundamentally, such plans are instruments serving particular interests within aid organizations and recipient governments alike, and may as such be interpreted as discourses of power. They can succeed in setting the agenda and in tapping resources while continuing in the old mould of what is “planning” and show very few results on the ground.


Key words: Environmental planning, environmental discourses, environment & development, aid and aid impact.


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