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Conclusion: Governance, Choice and History

  • Glen O’Hara

Abstract

Planning reflected a broader ‘culture’ or mood, and its failings were all the more agonizing for that. ‘Culture can never be wholly conscious’, T.S. Eliot had written while reflecting on the 1940s movement towards artistic planning: ‘there is always more to it than we are conscious of… It is… the unconscious background of all our planning’.1 That ‘unconscious background’ constituted the unspoken assumptions of the early 1960s, the intertwined emphasis on science, technology, modernisation, national competitiveness, efficiency and progress. These amounted to what Aaron Wildavsky called ‘a secular faith… not so much a matter for the social scientist as for the theologian’.2 Some authors label this complex of ideas ‘high modernism’, a view of the world at once positivistic, linear and rational, celebrating the machine and coping with constant change by embracing it and turning it to the ends of ‘creative destruction’.3 It was secular, urban, and characterised by a high level of technical and economic specialisation .4 The failure of planning brought that complex of beliefs into question: it was an inevitably painful process.

Keywords

Competition Policy Shadow Economy National Competitiveness Urban Programme High Modernism 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Notes

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Copyright information

© Glen O’Hara 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • Glen O’Hara
    • 1
  1. 1.Oxford Brookes UniversityUK

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