An Italian Urban “Fashion” The Urban 1 Programme as a Catalyst for Institutional Planning Shift

Sara Verones, Simone Tulumello, Simona Rubino, Ilaria Delponte


Since the 1990s Italy has been going through changes and experiments concerning modes and tools of urban government. New methods, based on public­private partnership, on a consensual basis, were progressively adopted, overcoming the traditional authoritative mechanisms and role of public actors. The contribution of Community policies such as initiatives on urban areas, has been crucial in creating new tools, influencing the existing ones and activating new approaches to planning. This paper builds some theoretical considerations on the contributions the implementation of European Programmes has given to the changes in the conception of urban interventions and the
debated shift in urban policies from “government” to “governance”. The aim is to build a critical analysis about how the Urban 1 initiative acted as a “catalyst” for the evolution of urban practices,
accelerating the innovation of the planning cultures and practices. The article examines three cities where an Urban 1 Programme has been developed: Genoa, Naples and Palermo. The cases have been
selected in order to present the variety of interpretations of EU initiatives across Italy, fostering a critical discussion on EU programmes and their relationships with local planning policies.


Italian Planning; Italy; Environmental Planning; Development Control; Development Plans; Strategic Plans; Strategic Environmental Assessment; Heritage Management

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ISSN: 2239-267X

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