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Embedding the land market: Polanyi, urban planning, and regulation

Shepherd, Edward ORCID: and Wargent, Matthew ORCID: 2024. Embedding the land market: Polanyi, urban planning, and regulation. Environment and Planning A 56 (3) , pp. 905-926. 10.1177/0308518X231203484

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How land markets should be regulated is a fraught political question. This paper argues that the heterodox political economy of Karl Polanyi – underutilised in urban studies and planning scholarship – provides a useful language to analyse the role of urban planning in development land markets. We ground our analysis in the concept of embeddedness, building on Polanyi’s core contention that economic behaviour is not, and cannot be, distinct from social, political and cultural relations. We juxtapose an account of the institutionalisation of urban planning in England during the mid-20th century with contemporary neoliberal reforms, analysing the dynamic reconfigurations in how development land markets have been differently embedded via the planning system in relation to a shifting political, ideological and economic environment. The paper foregrounds the co-constitutive nature of state regulation and markets, moving past the simplistic regulation-deregulation dichotomy frequently adopted to frame government intervention via the planning system.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Geography and Planning (GEOPL)
Publisher: SAGE Publications
ISSN: 1472-3409
Funders: The authors would like to acknowledge the support of the Economic and Social Research Council (grant ES/W001675/1). No new data were created during this study.
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 20 September 2023
Date of Acceptance: 8 September 2023
Last Modified: 17 Jun 2024 13:35

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