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Examination of the Interpretation of Strategic Spatial Planning in Three Cases from Turkey

Strategic spatial planning is a multi-actor approach through which relevant parties come together, discuss the problems and potentials of their locality and formulate a shared vision, strategies and projects for multiple sectors. Obviously, this planning approach comprises certain methods and techniques; however, it is reinterpreted in different ways in the planning systems of different countries due to their specific legislative, economic, administrative and social backgrounds. What is more, the use of this approach may vary even between localities in the same country, depending on the perception of the stakeholders and methods of collaboration. Despite varying perceptions and methods of adoption, it is possible to say that contemporary strategic planning practices display two constants, which are (1) a multi-actor (or participatory) planning process and (2) a multi-dimensional (or multi-sectoral) plan. Once these two characteristics are provided, the so-called nation-specific and local-specific differences show themselves in the organization of multi-actor planning processes, and in the contents and forms of strategic plans. The method of adoption and interpretation of the mentioned characteristics is illustrated by three cases (at regional, provincial and local levels) from Turkey.