Planning with youth

Planning with youth: a tool and a framework for an engaging, meaningful and forward-looking participation of youngsters in shaping attractive and sustainable living environments



Project type


Our society is changing rapidly and sustainability is a key policy objective. But in light of a growing diversity of multi-cultural and multi-ethnic groups of people there are challenges in capturing different preferences and values across age groups. The recently emerged youth movement, now asking for better climate policy, signals for an increased concern for social and environmental sustainability. Yet, young people’s preferences, and their positioning, in relation the design, and use, of blue-green infrastructure across living environments do not feature very prominently in planning of living environments.

Literature on spatial planning recognizes diversity of needs and the importance of inclusivity when seeking to make public space safer, secure, and greener. But, there seems to be a gap in how different participatory approaches/tools allow youngsters to reflect upon their needs, express values, and preferences, about grey and blue-green infrastructure.

This project aims to fill this gap by

  1. systematically and empirically assessing challenges with youth involvement planning,
  2. testing and comparing alternative tools with youngsters (13-18 years), and
  3. develop an intergenerational framework for planning of blue-green infrastructure in public places.

Accounting for youngsters’ preference in blue-green infrastructure not only helps with climate change, but also makes public space attractive to the young people and empowers them as guardians of the future.

Romina Rodela, PhD, senior researcher

Arjen Buijs, associate professor

Alan Diduck, professor

Natalie Marie Gulsrud, doctor

Patri Lankoski, associate professor

Kari Lehtilä, professor

Maja Steen Möller, PhD

Andrea Didon, lecturer

Research area / geographic area

Natural Sciences, Technology and Environmental Studies Environmental Science Environmental Studies Nature & the environment Europe

Project time

2019 — 2024


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