Governance for Urban Growth Management: A Greater Christchurch Case Study
Although the sustainable development paradigm has continued to grow in acknowledgement and understanding, there remains a disjuncture between its theory and practice. This disjuncture is especially evident in urban growth management, where the implementation of planning theories which promote sustainable urban form, such as smart growth and new urbanism, have failed to deliver the sustainable development outcomes promoted. The governance of the implementation of urban growth management theories has been identified as one, if not the key reason, for this disjuncture. A new approach to urban governance, based upon the principles of integration, futurity and appropriate geographic scales, is required. The current research utilises a case study approach and qualitative research methods to review how urban growth management processes are provided for in New Zealand, and to explore how new approaches to the governance of urban growth management can be implemented through New Zealand’s planning framework. Primary data was collected through interviewing a range of people who have been deeply involved in the governance of urban growth management in the Greater Christchurch sub-region of the South Island. Content analysis of relevant documents was also undertaken to determine how the current planning framework structures the governance of urban growth management. The results show that despite recent legislative changes, New Zealand’s current planning framework does not effectively promote the new approach needed for the governance of urban growth management, and that in fact, it acts as more as an inhibitor. It is recognised that central government plays an important role in shaping governance processes at the local government level. From this, specific actions that the New Zealand government should take, are recommended. The lessons and recommendations provided by this research contribute towards addressing the disjuncture between theory and practice, both in terms of ensuring better governance of the implementation of urban growth management, and in the wider respect of implementing the sustainable development paradigm.
Advisor: Malam, Linda
Degree Name: Master of Planning
Degree Discipline: Department of Geography
Publisher: University of Otago
Keywords: Governance; Urban Growth Management; Sustainable Development; Greater Christchurch Urban Development Strategy; Resource Management Act 1991; Local Government Act 2002
Research Type: Thesis