Politics, Planning and Homes in a World City  book cover
1st Edition

Politics, Planning and Homes in a World City

ISBN 9780415486378
Published March 12, 2010 by Routledge
296 Pages

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Book Description

This is an insightful study of spatial planning and housing strategy in London, focusing on the period 2000-2008 and the Mayoralty of Ken Livingstone. Duncan Bowie presents a detailed analysis of the development of Livingstone’s policies and their consequences.

Examining the theory and practice of spatial planning at a metropolitan level, Bowie examines the relationships between:

  • planning, the residential development market and affordable housing
  • environmental, economic and equity objectives
  • national, regional and local planning agencies and their policies.

It places Livingstone’s Mayoralty within its historical context and looks forward to the different challenges faced by Livingstone’s successors in a radically changed political and economic climate.

Clear and engaging, this critical analysis provides a valuable resource for academics and their students as well as planning, housing and development professionals. It is essential reading for anyone interested in politics and social change in a leading ‘world city’ and provides a base for parallel studies of other major metropolitan regions.



Duncan Bowie is Reader in Urban Planning and Regeneration at London Metropolitan University. He has worked in London for thirty years as a professional housing strategist and planner, most recently developing the housing policies for the Mayor’s London Plan and also as analyst of its implementation.


'Anyone who is seriously interested in the subject of London’s governance – and that should include any serious Londoner – ought to look inside Duncan Bowie’s book and try to distil its lessons' - Professor Sir Peter Hall, Bartlett Professor of Planning and Regeneration, UCL

'It is essential reading for students of government and planning, not only in London and more widely in the United Kingdom but in other great cities across the world' - Professor Sir Peter Hall, Bartlett Professor of Planning and Regeneration, UCL 

'This text is special in that it links the principles of land use planning with the author's practical experience of making spatial planning and housing strategies work in Livingstone's London. As a result the reader is not only helped to understand planning theory but also to gain insight into the ways in which a law based discipline can effectively (and sometimes ineffectively) interface with political reality' - Professor Christine Whitehead, Professor of Housing Economics, London School of Economics

'Not only is Duncan Bowie’s a perceptive,fascinating account of planning and housing in the devolved London Mayoral regime, but its conclusions open our eyes to the problems ahead, both within and beyond the capital.' - Martin Simmons, Town and Country Planning Association