The Open UniversitySkip to content

Insurgent participation: consensus and contestation in planning the redevelopment of Berlin-Tempelhof airport

Hilbrandt, Hanna (2017). Insurgent participation: consensus and contestation in planning the redevelopment of Berlin-Tempelhof airport. Urban Geography, 38(4) pp. 537–556.

Full text available as:
Full text not publicly available
Due to copyright restrictions, this file is not available for public download until 4 October 2017
DOI (Digital Object Identifier) Link:
Google Scholar: Look up in Google Scholar


Despite decades of debate, participatory planning continues to be contested. More recently, research has revealed a relationship between participation and neoliberalism, in which participation works as a post-political tool—a means to depoliticize planning and legitimize neoliberal policy-making. This article argues that such accounts lack attention to the opportunities for opposing neoliberal planning that may be inherent within participatory processes. In order to further an understanding of the workings of resistance within planning, it suggests the notion of insurgent participation—a mode of contentious intervention in participatory approaches. It develops this concept through the analysis of various participatory approaches launched to regenerate the former airport Berlin-Tempelhof. A critical reading of participation in Tempelhof reveals a contradictory process. Although participatory methods worked to mobilize support for predefined agendas, their insurgent participation also allowed participants to criticize and shape the possibilities of engagement, challenge planning approaches and envision alternatives to capitalist imperatives.

Item Type: Journal Item
Copyright Holders: 2016 Informa UK Ltd
ISSN: 0272-3638
Keywords: participation; planning; post-politics; neoliberalism; contestation; Berlin
Academic Unit/School: Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (FASS) > Politics, Philosophy, Economics, Development, Geography
Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (FASS)
Item ID: 46015
Depositing User: Hanna Hilbrandt
Date Deposited: 12 Apr 2016 13:49
Last Modified: 07 Apr 2017 06:13
Share this page:


Actions (login may be required)

Policies | Disclaimer

© The Open University   + 44 (0)870 333 4340