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Metaphors in complexity theory and planning

Chettiparamb, A. ORCID: (2006) Metaphors in complexity theory and planning. Planning Theory, 5 (1). pp. 71-91. ISSN 1741-3052

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To link to this item DOI: 10.1177/1473095206061022


This article reviews the use of complexity theory in planning theory using the theory of metaphors for theory transfer and theory construction. The introduction to the article presents the author's positioning of planning theory. The first section thereafter provides a general background of the trajectory of development of complexity theory and discusses the rationale of using the theory of metaphors for evaluating the use of complexity theory in planning. The second section introduces the workings of metaphors in general and theory-constructing metaphors in particular, drawing out an understanding of how to proceed with an evaluative approach towards an analysis of the use of complexity theory in planning. The third section presents two case studies – reviews of two articles – to illustrate how the framework might be employed. It then discusses the implications of the evaluation for the question ‘can complexity theory contribute to planning?’ The concluding section discusses the employment of the ‘theory of metaphors’ for evaluating theory transfer and draws out normative suggestions for engaging in theory transfer using the metaphorical route.

Item Type:Article
Divisions:Henley Business School > Real Estate and Planning
ID Code:32892

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