Theses Master's

Coordinating Planners' Perceptions of Neighborhood in Deindustrialized Detroit

Hackett, Caitlin E.

Throughout the twentieth century, the methods employed by planners have moved from that of a rational and systematic model to a new communicative action model; thus a move from focusing on "analysis" and processed knowledge to that of interactive and local knowledge. While the moved from a distanced to a more interactive approach became necessary in order "to best serve the public interest," the current focus on local knowledge continues to overlook other representational forms such as photography, film and personal experience. This thesis seeks to answer the question: what forms of representation do local planners use to portray neighborhood change and how do they negotiate among them? I am interested in the difference, if any, between how a local planner understands a neighborhood and then how they present that neighborhood in a professional document/report, and how can we best negotiate between the differences between the forms of representations. Using interviews and a filmed site visit, I explored how select city planners in Detroit came to understand city neighborhoods, beyond the simple numerical analysis provided in typical, government issued planning reports.

Geographic Areas


More About This Work

Academic Units
Urban Planning
Thesis Advisors
Beauregard, Robert
M.S., Columbia University
Published Here
May 22, 2012