Sight lines, sight areas and unbroken open spaces? More-than-representational conceptualisations in Dutch landscape planning

Maartje Bulkens, Claudio Minca, Hamzah Muzaini

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Drawing on the case study of the Wageningse Eng, the Netherlands, this paper examines a set of spatial metaphors (and their attendant grounded impacts) employed within two key policy documents – the allocation plan and a related map – pertaining to how the cultural landscape is to be spatially managed and developed by the municipality. Although promoted as being based on historical facts and a cornerstone of Dutch commitment to participatory planning, the case being studied reveals the ways in which these metaphors are at times not only entirely subjective and arbitrary, but also perceived by residents and users as neglecting their rights with respect to the landscape and as instruments constraining what can or cannot be done in that area. More broadly, in the face of calls for more non-representational approaches to landscape analysis, the paper shows the continued salience of representational practices within spatial planning and how these may hold very material implications for landscapes.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)239-249
Number of pages11
JournalGeographica Helvetica
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 11 Sept 2015

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