Community Planning: Training A-Z
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An annotated selection of training courses on community planning. Includes specialist courses in academic institutions as well as sessions provided by charities and consultants.

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Training A-Z

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Last updated on:16 November 2009

21st century town meeting
Method involving very large numbers of community, industry and government representatives (100 to 5000 or more) in a forum of one or two days. Participants engage in formed deliberation in small groups, connected through networked computers. They work from pre-designed questions, entering their individual team consensus, as well as priority ratings and rankings. The goal is to find common ground and priorities on broad and complex issues. This is a multi-step process with intensive facilitation and includes trained facilitators and theme teams, as well as volunteer scribes.
America Speaks     America Speaks    
Access centre
Initiative which increases access to education, training, employment and other services (e.g. health) within a local setting. Can be either physical or virtual.
Full service school    
Being answerable for decisions. When policy decisions are made openly to the population, who are capable of assessing whether it is a decision made in the wider public interest.
Action group
Informal organisation set up to get something achieved, usually through visible and public protest.
Action minutes
Record of a meeting in the form of a list of steps required, who should take them and when.
Action plan
Proposals for action. Usually in the form of a list of steps required, who should take them and when.
Action planner    
Action planning
Developing an action plan. Term also used in the 1990s to describe community planning events. 
Action plan     Community planning event    
Action planning event
Similar meaning to community planning event. Term used in the 1990s.
Community planning event     Community planning event    
Action research
Research oriented towards bringing about change, often involving respondents in the process of investigation, with the researchers being aware of their influence on the research process by being a part of the environment they study. (Sarkissian)
Active citizenship
Extensive participation in civic life by citizens. Allows people to play a greater role in public affairs and the delivery of public services.
Activity mapping
Plotting on a map or plan how people use places as an aid to understanding how best to improve them.
Activity week
Week of activities designed to promote interest in, and debate on, a chosen theme: eg Architecture week; Urban design week; Environment week.
Activity week    
Activity year
Year of activities designed to promote interest in, and debate on, a chosen theme: eg Glasgow 1999; UK City of Architecture and Design.
Adaptable model
Flexible model of an area or building which allows people to test out alternative design options.
Added value
Additional benefits gained as a by-product of a service or project.
Adopted proposals map
Part of a Local Plan which shows the location of proposals on an Ordnance Survey base map.
When a plan has statutory force. Usually confirmed by a legal notice in a local paper.  
Advanced thermal treatment
A means of recovering energy from waste. Waste is heated at high temperatures and a useable gas is produced. Also known as gasification and pyrolysis.
Adventure playground
Playground that encourages children to construct and manage their own environment.
Advocacy planning
Professional planners working on behalf of the disadvantaged. Term popular in the United States in the early 1970s.
Aerobic digestion
Biological treatment of organic waste in the presence of air, producing a residue used to improve soil quality.
Anaerobic digestion    
Affordable housing
Housing which those who need it can afford. Usually refers to housing which is subsidised. May be for sale or for rent. 
Plan for a meeting. List of items to be discussed.
Sand, gravel, crushed rock and other bulk materials used by the construction industry.
Alternative plan
Plan for a site or neighbourhood putting forward a different approach to the prevailing plan.
Community plan    
A positive element that contributes to the overall character or enjoyment of a place by residents or visitors. For example, open land, trees, historic buildings and the relationship between them, or less tangible factors such as tranquillity.
Amenity trust
Charitable organisation established to manage a public amenity.
Development trust    
Anaerobic Digestion
Organic matter broken down by bacteria in the absence of air, producing a gas (methane) and solid (digestate).
Aerobic digestion    
Ancient monument
Structure subject to special planning controls. (Protected under the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Areas Act 1979 in UK.) 
Ancient woodland
Woodland that is believed to have existed from at least medieval times.
Person with good communications skills employed to assist in organizing and enlivening a community process, such as children’s participatory design activities. Often a community artist. (Sarkissian 2009)
The process through which an applicant can challenge a planning decision by the planning authority. Appeals can be made against a refusal to grant permission, the failure to issue a decision within a given time, against conditions attached to permission, against the issue of an enforcement notice and against refusals of listed building and conservation area consent. In England and Wales, appeals are processed by the Planning Inspectorate.
Similar meaning to community appraisal.
Community appraisal     Landscape appraisal    
Appreciative inquiry
Group working process which builds on potentials, solutions and benefits to create change.
The Thin Book of Appreciative Inquiry    
Underground rock layer that holds groundwater. Often an important source of water for public use, agriculture and industry.
Archaeological assessment
Evaluation of potential archaeological interest of a site or building. Either desk-based or using a field survey with small-scale pits or trial trenching by professionally qualified archaeologists looking for historical remains.
Place with certain easily identifiable qualities. Concept sometimes used in briefing and design workshops to get people to describe the kind of place they aspire to; for instance, a certain part of a certain city or a certain building.
Architects in schools
Environmental education programme involving architects working with children in schools.
Royal Institute of British Architects    
Architecture centre
Place aimed at helping people understand, and engage in, the design of the local built environment.
Architecture centre    
Architecture week
Week of activities designed to promote interest in, and debate on, architecture. Usually includes opening interesting buildings to the public.
Activity week    
Architecture workshop
Workshop session on architecture. Term also sometimes used to describe an architecture or community design centre.
Architecture centre     Community design centre    
Area action plan
Formal planning document focused on a specific location requiring conservation or facing significant change. May aim to deliver planned growth, stimulate regeneration, protect sensitive areas and resolve conflicting objectives.
Area based regeneration
Approach based on getting agencies involved in depressed areas working together to improve the quality of life.
Area forum
Body designed to improve relations between local authorities, public service providers and local residents. Provides an opportunity for residents to raise matters of local concern, give feedback on how services are being delivered and influence decisions being made about where they live. Also gives local authorities and service providers the chance to improve their knowledge and understanding of local issues.
Forum     Neighbourhood forum    
Area investment framework
Establishes regeneration priorities for an area with the aim of targeting funding from development agencies.
Area of change
Place identified in a local plan as one that the planning authority expects to change, through, for example, development pressure or regeneration initiatives.
Area of outstanding natural beauty (AONB)
Statutory designation aiming to conserve and enhance the natural beauty of the best landscape. In England, powers created by the National Parks and Access to the Countryside Act of 1949. AONBs are designated by Natural England. There are 36 in all, covering about 15% of the Country.
Natural England    
Arms length management organisation (ALMO)
Company set up by a local authority to manage and improve all or part of its housing stock.
Art centre
Place providing a focus for the arts and local artists.
Art house
Building used as a base for local artists producing and exhibiting work with and about the local community. Used as a regeneration technique for developing local pride and talent.
Art centre    
Art workshop
Session where local residents work with artists designing and making artworks to improve their environment.
Art workshop    
Article 4 direction
Allows the secretary of state or local planning authority to require a planning application for a development that would normally not need one because it would be covered by permitted development rights. Power comes from Article 4 of the The Town & Country Planning (General Permitted Development) Order 1995.
Asset base
Capital assets of property or cash which underpin the operations of an organisation, for instance by generating revenue from rents.
Asset based community development
Approach which acknowledges that communities already have strengths and assets that can be built upon.

Asset based development
Strategy to secure the future of community organisations and charities through possession of tangible assets such as land, buildings or a dedicated income. Ensures self-sufficiency, independence and sustainability.
Assistance team
Similar meaning to Design assistance team
Design assistance team (DAT)    
Award scheme
Programme set up to promote good practice by presenting awards for excellence or effort.
Award scheme    
Awareness raising day
Day of activities designed to promote interest in a community planning issue, normally held prior to a planning day or other intensive activity
Awareness walk
Similar meaning to Reconnaissance trip
Reconnaissance trip    
Backland development
Building on landlocked sites behind existing buildings, such as rear gardens. Usually in residential areas. Such sites often have no street frontages. 
Barefoot architect
Architect who works in villages helping people construct their homes. Term used in Asia.
Community architect    
Baseline data
Information about the starting point of any project or initiative against which improvement can be measured later.
Beacon council
Local authority recognised as achieving excellence in particular services. Scheme established by UK government to promote innovation.
Before and afters
Photos, drawings or computer simulations showing a place before and after development has taken place from the same viewpoint. One of the most effective ways of helping people understand proposals.
Indicator that allows people to measure the impact or success of a project by comparing it with something similar.
Bending the mainstream
Re-aligning the allocation of main public resources, such as the police and health services, to better target the most deprived areas or problematic issues.
Best fit slide rule
A visual discussion tool designed to examine alternative street infill solutions and their consequences. An elevation of a street is drawn or assembled with photos and alternative designs inserted.
Participatory Design    
Best practice
Superior performance in achieving a policy or objective. It is usual for best practice to be rolled out or copied, leading to widespread performance improvements. Term good practice has similar meaning.
Way of capturing, through the tax system, some of the development value of land for the benefit of the community.
Biodegradable waste
Waste which breaks down naturally, such as food, plants and paper.
Biological diversity. The variety of life in the world or in a particular habitat or ecosystem.
Biodiversity action plan (BAP)
Strategy prepared to conserve and enhance biological diversity in an area.
Fuel derived from biomass. 
Organic material derived from waste which is used as a renewable energy source to produce electricity and heat.
When the value of land or property diminishes as a result of proposals for development or anticipated development.
Block models
Physical models where buildings are made out of wooden blocks.
Online journal or noticeboard (web log) where individuals or organisations can comment on specific subjects and invite responses so generating an ongoing debate.
Commonly used abbreviation for 'Black and Minority Ethnic' group or community.
Term used to refer to initiatives led by the community, as opposed to top down initiatives led by the authorities.
Vigorous discussion to generate ideas in which all possibilities are considered. Widely used first step in generating solutions to problems.
Workshop process where group members respond in silence with four written suggestions to a given problem. Papers are then exchanged and members add suggestions to a ‘new’ paper. All papers are then compared and discussed by the group. (Sarkissian 2009)
Neighbourhood 'branding' uses simple images and text to establish a desired identity for an area. The branding process can be used as a core element of a community involvement strategy.
The linking of local, community based plans with statutory planning at local authority or regional level.
Instructions setting out what is required. Common types include development brief, design brief, planning brief. 
Briefing workshop
Working participatory sessions held at an early stage in a project or action planning event to establish a project agenda or brief.
Briefing workshop    
Brownfield land
Land that has been previously developed (in contrast to 'Greenfield' land).
Building cooperative
Cooperative building contractor. All members usually receive equal rates and decisions are made collectively.
Building preservation notice
Statutory notice providing temporary protection to a building while its long term status is considered. Useful for historic buildings in danger of being demolished.
Business improvement district (BID)
Area within which businesses agree to pay a levy to the local authority for an agreed set of objectives. These might include environmental improvements, increased refuse collection or better signage. Usually managed by a business-led local development partnership.
Business planning
Testing the viability of a project or organisation by predicting income and expenditure over a period of time.
Business planning for real
Computer-based simulation which helps new or existing organisations 'play through' the choices they will face in developing a business plan. Groups assemble a list of projects they would like to undertake. These are fed into a computer and the cost implications printed out.
Good practice guide to community planning and development    
Business planning workshop
Session where participants work in small groups to determine project priorities and programme targets. Normally a draft business plan is prepared as a basis for discussion which is then amended until an agreed cash flow is arrived at.
Business planning zone (BPZ)
Area with a simplified planning regime. Specific low-impact development, conforming to a scheme setting out acceptable use classes and general design standards, might not require planning permission.
Buzz group
Small group of people who work through an issue. Similar to a focus group or workshop.
The quality of being capable; the ability to do something.
Capacity and vulnerability analysis (CVA)
Same meaning as Vulnerability and capacity analysis
Vulnerability and capacity analysis    
Capacity building
The development of awareness, knowledge, skills and operational capability by certain actors, normally the community, to achieve their purpose.
Capacity building workshop
Event organised primarily to establish partnerships between the public, private and voluntary sectors on development issues.
Case study
Description of a project. Used for helping others understand how it worked, or failed to work.
Catchment management plan
Plan for the future of a river catchment. Contains analysis of issues such as water and sewerage infrastructure, waste disposal and flood plain planning, and programmes of work to achieve proposed objectives.
Certificate of lawfulness of use or development
Document issued by the local planning authority to describe the precise use, operation or building works on a site which is considered permissible without the need to apply for planning permission.
Individual who controls a meeting, deciding who can speak when.
Individual who believes in an idea and will promote it through thick and thin. Important ingredient for many projects.
Moving spirits    
Change of use
A change in the way that land or buildings are used. Planning permission is usually needed to change from one use class to another e.g. from retail to housing.
Use classes order    
Organisation which acts in the interests of society rather than in pursuit of profit. May receive tax breaks and other benefits.
Increasingly popular term for describing a workshop devoted to a concerted effort to solve a problem or plan the design of something. Same meaning as Design charrette.
Design charrette    
Large sheet of paper used for writing or drawing on, usually attached to walls or placed on an easel. Essential tool of participative working.
Prospectus containing a set of principles to guide development of a place. Best developed using a collaborative process with key stakeholders. Three steps: Looking and Learning together; Setting standards for excellence; Committing resources to longer term priorities.
Chatham House Rule
When a meeting, or part thereof, is held under the Chatham House Rule, participants are free to use the information received, but neither the identity nor the affiliation of the speaker(s), nor that of any other participant, may be revealed. May be invoked at meetings and workshops to encourage openness and the sharing of information. 
Choice catalogue
Menu of items, usually visually illustrated, showing a range of design choices available.
Choice catalogues    
Choices method
Visioning process based on four steps:
1. Meetings throughout the community to brainstorm ideas for making life better.
2. Consolidation of ideas into goals and vision statements.
3. A vision fair where people vote on which visions they would like to pursue and make personal commitment pledges.
4. Setting up of action groups to carry out chosen ideas.
Chattanooga     Participation Works!    
Government publication setting out procedural matters and guidance.
Citizens advisory group
Group made up of members of the public (usually between 10 and 30) which informs and advises decision makers. Can take many forms.
Citizens jury
Informal inquiry method where a group of around 16 people, selected to be representative of the community, spend a few days examining an issue, listening to witnesses and producing a report.
Participation Works!    
Citizens panel
A large, demographically representative group of citizens used regularly to assess public preferences and opinions.
Citizens summit
Large-scale deliberative public meeting (typically involving between 500 to 5,000 people) that uses advanced communications technology to facilitate discussions. 
City farm
Working farm in an urban area, normally run by a voluntary committee of local people. Primary role is educational rather than food production.
Civic amenity site
Facility provided by the waste disposal authority where the public can deposit waste not collected by dustcarts.
Civic forum
Same meaning as Forum
Civil renewal
Individuals and groups becoming more actively involved in the well-being of their community, identifying and tackling problems to bring about change and improve the quality of life.
Civil society
The arena of organised citizen activity outside of the state and market sectors. People coming together to define, articulate, and act on their concerns through various forms of organisation and expression.
Individual or organisation that commissions buildings or other projects.
User client    
Climate change
Long-term changes in temperature, precipitation and wind patterns. Now widely regarded as a result of human activity, particularly fossil fuel consumption.
Networks of interconnected firms and organisations working in a particular field such as universities and hi-tech industries. Business practice based on co-operation and collaboration between firms.
An enterprise conducted for the mutual benefit of its members. This might be a business that is democratic, each member having one vote irrespective of capital or labour input. Any economic surplus belongs to the members – after providing for reserves for the development of the business.
Housing co-operative    
Tenure arrangement in which property is partly owned by the occupier, the remaining portion being gradually purchased during the period of occupation.
Code for sustainable homes
National UK standard for sustainable design and construction of new homes. Expressed in terms of Levels. In 2006 most houses were built at the equivalent of Level 1. By 2016, new homes will have to be built to Zero Carbon – Level 5 or 6. The increasing standards are being achieved by ramping up the compulsory Building Regulations requirements. By 2011 all housing development built with public subsidy – mainly by housing associations – had to meet Code Level 4 requirements.
Housing with shared living components. Ranges from sharing of gardens to sharing of workshops, laundry rooms and even kitchens.
Cohousing     Cohousing Network UK    
Collaborative design workshop
Similar to design workshop or design charrette. Term used on this website for a one day workshop sandwiched between an open house event and public report back session.
Design workshop     Design charrette     Collaborative Design Workshop    
Collaborative planning
Planning undertaken by two or more parties working together. A key concept in community planning. Similarly collaborative design. 
Combined heat and power (CHP)
Heat and power (usually electricity) generated at the same time with the heat, instead of going to waste, being captured for other uses such as heating local buildings. 
Land with current planning permission or allocated in adopted development plan for development, particularly residential development). Also referred to as Committed development.
Group of people elected or delegated to make decisions, usually in meetings.
Used in many ways. Usually refers to those living within a small, loosely defined geographical area. Yet any group of individuals who share interests may also be described as a community. Also sometimes used to describe a physical area rather than a group of people
following entries on community    
Community action
A process by which the deprived define for themselves their needs, and determine forms of action to meet them, usually outside the prevailing political framework.
Community action planning
Same meaning as Microplanning workshop
Microplanning workshop     Action planning    
Community anchor
Independent community-run and led organisation, rooted in a sense of place (whether an inner city neighbourhood or a rural district), and with a mission to improve things for the whole community. Likely to own  or manage assets and use income from these to provide services. 
Community appraisal
Survey of the community by the community to identify needs and opportunities. Usually based on a self-completion questionnaire devised by the community and delivered to every household.
Village Appraisals Software for Windows     Community profiling    
Community architect
Architect who practises community architecture. Will often live and work in the neighbourhood he or she is designing for.
Community architecture    
Community architecture
Architecture carried out with the active participation of the end users. Similarly community design, community planning and so on.
Community art
Visual and performance art addressed to the needs of a local community. Often related to environmental issues.
Art workshop    
Community based organisation (CBO)
Voluntary organisation operating at a local level to represent a local community or interest group. term increasingly used at international level. Similar in meaning to community group.
Community group     Non governmental organisation (NGO)    
Community based regeneration
Programmes focused on people that usually involve some form of capacity building. Improves the ability of local people to influence decision-making within their own community.
Community build
Building construction carried out by members of the local community, often voluntarily or as part of a training course.
Self build    
Community building
Building conceived, managed and sometimes built, by the local community for community use. Phrase also used to describe the activity of building a community; physically, socially and economically.
Community business
Trading organisation owned and controlled by the local community which aims to create self-supporting and viable jobs for local people and to use profits to create more employment, provide local services or support local charitable work.
Community car scheme
Provides a pool of cars across a district, for use by local people. Alternative to individual or family ownership of vehicles.
Community champion
Natural leader within a community who enjoys a great deal of respect from other residents. Has a strong concern for the community and other residents and is able to motivate others.
Community chest
Small grants available to community groups for projects to help them renew their own neighbourhoods.
Community cohesion
Where diverse backgrounds and cultures are valued in a community and where there is a common vision and sense of belonging.
Community consultation
Finding out what local people want.
Community design
Design carried out with the active participation of the end users. Similarly community architecture, community planning and so on.
Community design centre
Place providing free or subsidised architectural, planning and design services to people who cannot afford to pay for them. Also known as a community technical aid centre.
Community design centre     Community technical aid centre    
Community design house
Local office used by a community designer or community architect. Term used in Japan.
Community design centre    
Community designer
Practitioner of community design. Person who designs places with people rather than for people.
Community development
Promotion of self-managed, non-profit-orientated projects to serve community needs.
Community development corporation
Non-profit-orientated company undertaking development for community benefit. American concept similar to the UK's development trust.
Development trust    
Community development trust
Same meaning as Development trust
Development trust    
Community driven
Term used to reflect key role of the community in an initiative.
Community energy
Renewable energy development involving local residents and community groups.
Community enterprise
Enterprise for the benefit of the community rather than private profit by people within the community.
Community forest
Woodland area developed and managed by and for the communities living in and around it. Programme established in England by the Countryside Agency and Forestry Commission.
Community garden
Publicly accessible garden or small park created and managed by a voluntary group.
Community group
Voluntary organisation operating at local level.
Community based organisation (CBO)    
Community indicators
Measures devised and used by communities for understanding and drawing attention to important issues and trends. Useful for building an agenda for education and action.
Communities Count!    
Community infrastructure levy (CIL)
A charge which local authorities can levy on any new building or extension (with a floor area of 100 square metres or more) to pay for the local infrastructure needed for new development – schools, community and health facilities, green space, roads. The charge is levied according to a tariff (£x per building) which is set by the local planning authority in consultation with local communities. The Localism Act requires charging authorities to allocate a meaningful proportion of revenues to the neighbourhood where they were raised.
Community land trust
Independent non-profit trusts which own or control land and facilities in perpetuity for the benefit of the community.
Community land trusts    
Community landscape
Landscape architecture or design carried out with the active participation of the end users.
Community learning and education centre
Focal point for information and education at community level.
Community led plan
Plan founded on community involvement and led by voluntary groups.
Community led planning    
Community mapping
Making maps as a communal activity.
Community memory
Collective sense of local identity and experience (eg of past participatory activity).
Community monster
Community leader who abuses their position and becomes a tyrant.
Community newspaper
Information source controlled by the local community. Also community newsletter; similar on a smaller scale.
Community of practice
Process of social learning that occurs when people who have a common interest in some subject or problem collaborate over an extended period to share ideas, find solutions, and build innovations.
Community plan
Plan for the future of a community devised by the local community. Sets out proposals for the way in which a community wants to develop and respond to changes in the future. No set format. Will usually contain statements of principle, physical design proposals and targets.
Community plan checklist    
Community planning
Planning carried out with the active participation of the end users. Similarly community architecture, community design and so on.
Community planning council
Umbrella organisation at neighbourhood level with powers to deal with planning matters. Concept developed and recommended by the UK's Royal Town Planning Institute in 1982. Councils would be made up of representatives from various sectional voluntary interests.
Community planning day
Same meaning as Planning day
Planning day    
Community planning event
Carefully structured collaborative event at which all stakeholders, including the local community, work closely with specialists from all relevant disciplines to make plans for the future of that community or some aspects of it.
Community planning event    
Community planning forum
Multipurpose session lasting several hours designed to secure information, generate ideas and create interaction between interest groups.
Community planning forum    
Community planning weekend
Term most commonly used in the UK for a community planning event spanning a weekend. First used in 1989 at Bishopsgate, London. The term planning weekend is also used. Terms planning week and community planning week have also been used for slightly longer events. Also community planning day.
Planning weekend    
Community politics
Style of political action through which people are enabled to control their own destinies. Identified with an on-going political movement which seeks to create a participatory democracy.
Community profiling
Way of reaching an understanding of the needs and resources of a community with the active involvement of the community. Similar approach as participatory appraisal.
Community profiling    
Community project
Facility for the local community, created and managed by a voluntary committee, elected or unelected, from that community.
Community projects fund
Same meaning as Feasibility fund
Feasibility fund    
Community resilience
The ability of a community to withstand shocks and to bounce back from them.
Community safety plan
Plan drawn up by the local community to reduce crime and disorder.
Community shop
Shop democratically owned and managed by people living locally who use it. 
Community strategy
Strategy which sets out a framework for regeneration and service improvement in a local authority area. Also known as a Sustainable community strategy.
Sustainable community strategy (SCS)    
Community technical aid
Multi-disciplinary expert assistance to community groups enabling them to play an active role in the development of land and buildings. The term 'technical aid' is used to cover the diverse range of skills likely to be needed including architecture, planning, landscaping, engineering, surveying, ecology, environmental education, financial planning, management, administration and graphics.
Community technical aid centre
Place staffed by multidisciplinary group of experts who work for voluntary groups, helping them to undertake any project involving the development of buildings and land. Will provide whatever assistance is needed – design, planning, organisation, decision-making, management – from conception to completion. Similar to a community design centre.
Community design centre    
Community trust
Independent fundraising and grant-making charity which funds initiatives in the local community.
Community visioning
Thinking collectively about what the future could be. Term used to describe group working processes which help a community to develop imaginative shared visions for the future of a site, area or organisation. Approach often adopted by local authorities at an early stage in the plan-making process.
New Economics Foundation     Future search conference    
Community woodland
Same meaning as Community forest
Community forest    
Understanding between government (national or local) and the voluntary sector (in the guise of its representative bodies or through wider consultation) on how relations between the two should be conducted.
Competent authority
Organisition which considers a Strategic Environment al Assessment (SEA) report before coming to a decision on whether to adopt a programme or plan. (European Union directive on SEA.)
Conversion of biodegradable material, such as garden or kitchen waste, into a stable material that can be used as fertiliser. Can be done at different scales, from home composting to a large centralised facility.
Aerobic digestion     Anaerobic digestion    
Compulsory purchase order (CPO)
Power allowing government (national or local) to acquire privately owned land or property to fulfil certain obligations.
Computer aided design
Way of visually simulating designs in three dimensions on computer.
Requirement attached to a planning consent to limit, control or direct the manner in which a development is carried out. Also referred to as a planning condition.
Similar. In compliance with. For instance, plans at different scales may have to be in conformity with each other in terms of specifying the same number of new homes to be built in a certain place.
Consensus building
Procedure for helping people with different views to come together interactively on a dispute, project, plan or issue, to work towards agreeing a sensible solution or way forward which is mutually satisfactory.
Consensus forum
Where a large number of stakeholders deliberate for between one and three days with the goal of reaching common ground on broad and complex issues and influencing decision making. Participants are selected to be representative of the community and are overseen by a Guidance Team. Trained table facilitators assist and a forum report is prepared for comment. (Sarkissian 2009)
Conservation area
Area of special architectural or historic interest whose character and appearance it is desirable to preserve and enhance. There are special rules on some development in conservation areas. Planning authorities publish a map showing the boundaries and also produce a Conservation Area Proposals Statement. (Designated in the UK under the Planning (Listed Buildings & Conservation Areas) Act 1991.)
Conservation area character appraisal
Document defining the special architectural or historic interest that justifies an area being designated as a Conservation Area. 
Conservation area    
Conservation area consent
Consent required for the demolition of an unlisted building within a conservation area. Separate from, and independent of, any need for planning permission. 
Conservation area    
Seeking people's views (but not necessarily involving them in decision-making).
Consultation day
One-day event designed to consult key stakeholders or the general public on a particular issue.
Stakeholder participation day    
Consultation fatigue
Lack of public interest in consultation initiatives. Usually caused by an excess of consultations (due to lack of coordination by agencies) and/or a perceived lack of any results from past consultations.
Contaminated land
Land that has been polluted making it unfit for development and use unless cleaned up.
Shared responsibility between citizens and public officials for producing services and managing development processes. Purpose: to work together constructively through inevitable tensions and conflicts, negotiating outcomes with recognized power and responsibility sharing. Term used widely in Europe to mean community engagement. (Sarkissian 2009)
Core costs
Expenditure essential to keep an organisation going. As opposed to project costs. Includes such things as staff wages, rent, heating.
Core strategy
Document that sets out the key themes, vision and goals for spatial development, together with the strategic objectives of the planning framework for an area and the core policies to deliver these objectives.
Cost benefit analysis
Widely used technique used to decide whether to make changes to a project or programme based on the costs and benefits of different courses of action.
Countryside design summary
Simple description of the design relationship between the landscape, settlement patterns and buildings. Usually produced by the planning authority for a region, often combined with the production of local design statements for neighbourhoods within the region.
Local design statement    
Credit union
Financial co-operative owned and controlled by its members. Offers savings and loans at competitive rates, often to people unable to access mainstream banking services.
Critical friend
Someone who will point out what you are getting wrong, as well as right, in a constructive manner.
Critical mass event
Umbrella term for organisation development techniques involving large-scale events often lasting several days and often involving hundreds of people. Mostly used for organisational change but may also be appropriate for community planning. Labels given to specific types of event - structured in different ways and promoted by different people - include future search conference, large-scale interactive process, conference model, real-time strategic change, participative work redesign and open space workshops.
Future search conference     Open space workshop     Future search conference     Open space workshop    
Participative method for taking shared decisions that uses a combination of consensus voting and constructive dialogue in order to overcome differences, find common ground and reach more productive outcomes.
Crowd wise    
The arts and other manifestations of human intellectual achievement. Includes media, sports, libraries, museums, parks, the countryside, built heritage, tourism, and the creative industries.
Area of land attached to a building and forming one enclosure with it.
Cycle network
Linked routes, both on and off road, facilitating an easier and safer journey for cyclists.
Daily routine chart
Diagram showing people's daily activities and time taken to accomplish each of them. Usually produced by groups of women, men and children separately. Useful to deepen the analysis on seasonal calendars a...
Community profiling     Seasonal calendar    
De minimis
From the Latin de minimis non curat lex (the law does not deal with trivial matters). Term for activities or changes too minor to fall within the legal definition of development and which would make no difference to the outward appearance of a building. Used to deal with such things as installation of television aerials or small antennas.
Improvements that would have occurred naturally without the intervention of a regeneration programme.
Decent home
Home which is warm and weatherproof with reasonably modern facilities. Standard established by the Department of Communities and Local Government, UK.
Delegated power
Where decision-making is moved to another authority or body. For example, authority given by locally elected councillors to planning officers to take decisions on certain planning matters on behalf of the council.
The quantity of people or things in a given area or space. Residential development is normally measured by the number of habitable rooms or dwellings per hectare. Commercial development is normally expressed in terms of plot ratio: site coverage plus the number of floors.
Condition in which individuals, groups or communities do not have adequate food, shelter, education or opportunities for improvement.
Design assistance team (DAT)
Multidisciplinary team which visits an area and produces recommendations for action, usually after facilitating a community planning event. Term used by the American Institute of Architects to describe state-level events which evolved from its national level Regional/Urban Design Assistance Team (R/UDAT) programme. Similar terms in use include Urban design assistance team (UDAT) and Housing assistance team (HAT) (where only housing involved). Local DAT programmes have a wide variety of names; for example Ontario’s Community Assist/Urban Study Effort (CAUSE) and Mississippi’s Small Town Action Team (STAT). First UK event was called a Community/Urban Design Assistance Team (CUDAT).
Design assistance team    
Design charrette
Intensive design session, often including "all-nighter", originally just for architecture students but more recently including the public and professionals. Term originated at the Paris Ecole des Beaux-Arts at the turn of the century. Projects were collected at designated times on a cart ("charrette") where students would be found putting finishing touches to their schemes. Term now widely used in the USA to describe any intensive, group brainstorming effort. Charrette often used without the "Design" in front. Similar to design workshop
Design workshop     Design workshop    
Design code
Rules and requirements for the physical development of a site or area. The graphic and written components are detailed and precise, and usually build on an overall design vision or masterplan for a site or area.
Design day
Day when architects and local people brainstorm for design solutions to particular building problems, usually in teams. Term also used to describe day when local residents can drop in and talk through design ideas with professionals.
Building Homes People Want     Drop-in office    
Design fest
Action planning event where multidisciplinary design teams develop and present their ideas in public.
Design fest    
Design game
Method for devising building and landscape layouts with residents using coloured cut-outs of possible design features on plans.
Design game    
Design guide
Document setting out general urban design principles which should be adopted by any development in an area.
Local design statement    
Design meeting
Meeting for developing designs. Usually organised on a regular basis during the design stage of a project. Users and professionals will be present. The users, or clients, set the agenda but the meeting is normally conducted by the professionals. Various techniques will be used to present information and make decisions: showing slides, models, drawings, catalogues. Normal arrangement is for participants to sit round a table.
Design quality indicator (DQI)
Process for evaluating design quality of buildings which can be used by everyone involved in the development process. Generic toolkit available which can be used with all types of building. 
Design quality indicator (DQI)    
Design simulation
Playing at designing to get people used to the various roles in the design process.
Design statement
Document setting out the design principles on which a development proposal is to be based. Usually prepared by a developer in support of a planning application. Often required by planning authorities for large-scale and architecturally sensitive schemes. Will include information on the appearance, materials, layout, context and setting of buildings.
Design surgery
Where architects, planners or other professionals work through design issues with individuals, for instance occupants in a new housing scheme.
Design workshop
Hands-on session allowing groups to work creatively developing planning and design options. Sometimes called hands-on planning.
Design workshop     Design charrette    
Designing for real
Term used to describe the use of adaptable models to develop detailed design proposals for a building or site. Participants explore options by moving parts of the model around: ie, parts of a building or whole buildings. Similar concept to Planning for Real but on a smaller scale.
Planning for Real ®     Planning for Real    
Detailed application
A planning application seeking full permission for a development proposal, with no matters reserved for later planning approval.
Planning permission    
Another word for decision. The process by which a local planning authority reaches a decision on whether a proposed development requires planning permission.
The carrying out of building, engineering, mining or other operations in, on, over or under the land, or the making of any material change in the use of any buildings or other land and some categories of demolition and rebuilding (Town and Country Planning Act, UK, 1990, section 55). Note that the two part definition covers both new development and changes of use.
Development brief
Outlines the nature of development preferred on a site. Often used to encourage development. On large sites it may set out general development principles; on smaller sites it may specify uses, massing of buildings and any particular uses essential to securing planning permission.
Development consent order
Grant of planning permission and other necessary consents for large scale infrastructure projects in the fields of energy, transport, water and waste.
Development control
Function undertaken by planning authorities. includes dealing with planning applications, enforcement and providing advice on planning to the public and professionals. 
Development limits
Boundaries of an area within which development proposals would be acceptable. They seek to prevent development from gradually extending into the surrounding countryside.
Development officer
Individual who gets a project or organisation up and running.
Development partnership
Arrangement for collaboration by two or more parties to facilitate development, usually between the public and private sectors.
Development plan
The approved statutory land use and spatial plan for an area. Sets out a local planning authoritys policies and proposals for the development, conservation and use of land and buildings. The most important consideration when making a decision on a planning application. 
Development plan documents (DPDs)
Suite of documents setting out planning policy in an area. Likely to include a core strategy, area action plans and an adopted proposals map. DPDs are produced after rigorous community involvement, consultation and independent examination. Once adopted, they provide the basis for development control decisions.
Development planning for real
Adaptation of Planning for Real specially devised for developing countries. 
Development trust
Independent, not-for-profit organisation controlled by local people which facilitates and undertakes physical development in an area. It will have significant community involvement or control, will bring together a wide range of skills and interests, and will aim to sustain its operations at least in part by generating revenue.
Development trust     Community development corporation    
Creating diagrams in groups.
Diagrams     Diagrams    
Visual representations of information which help explain current issues or future proposals.
Direct action
Exertion of political pressure by tactics other than voting at elections. Usually used to refer to strikes, squatting or occupations.
Direct observation
Noting of events, objects, processes and relationships; particularly useful for issues hard to verbalise.
Disabled access
The means by which disabled people can conveniently go where they want.
Non-participatory form of service which renders the user unable to have a say in the process.
Serious disruption of the functioning of society, causing widespread human, material, or environmental losses which exceed the ability of the affected society to cope using its own resources (UNDP 91).
Disaster management
All aspects of planning for, and responding to, disasters.
Disaster mitigation
Reducing the impact of disasters on society by reducing the hazards and/or society's vulnerability to them.
see also
Disaster preparedness
The ability to predict, respond and cope with the effects of a disaster.
Disaster relief
Extraordinary measures necessary for coping with a disaster.
Discussion group
Method of social research involving a group of people who are brought together to discuss their views or experiences surrounding a particular topic.
Discussion method
Structure for effective communication which allows everyone in a group to participate.
see also Technology of participation
Technology of participation    
Extent to which the added value of a regeneration project is reduced by causing existing activity to relocate or be replaced.
Distributed energy
The generation of electricity and/or heat near to where it is used. In contrast with centralised systems which transmit energy a considerable distance along power lines.
Distributor road
Most important road within the main residential, commercial and industrial built-up areas.
District centre
Group of shops and some service outlets serving part of an urban area and providing a geographic focus for it. Separate from the town centre but with more variety than a local centre.
District heating
Heating of many properties in a neighbourhood by a single boiler or heat plant. In contrast to having separate boliers for each property. 
Door knocking
Basic engagement method of knocking on front doors and speaking to the people who open the door. 
Door knocking    
Document or plan which is not finalised and may be consulted on and revised before being so. 
Draft plan consultation    
Draft plan consultation
Seeking views on a draft plan or proposal. 
Draft plan consultation    
Drop-in office
Working office open to the public. Set up by architects or urban designers working in a neighbourhood to encourage local involvement in the design process. May be permanent or temporary (on an open day for instance).
Self-contained building or part of a building used as a home. May be a house, bungalow, flat, maisonette or converted farm building.
Delivery of government services and information through electronic means such as the internet, digital television and other digital technologies.
Online version of traditional petition. Way of demonstrating support for a particular viewpoint. See for 
Provision of planning services online, accessible via the internet and email.
Planning portal    
Voting electronically, normally using instant polling or audience response systems. 
Exemplar green development which meets the highest standards of sustainability, including low and zero carbon technologies and quality public transport systems. It will make use of brownfield land and surplus public sector land where practical and lead the way in design, facilities, services and community involvement.
Economic audit
Audit of local economy, usually undertaken by independent professional economist.
Economic impact report
Study on the economic impact of a new road; who will benefit and to what extent. Road schemes are often justified on the basis that they will attract new businesses and create new jobs.
Education action zone (EAZ)
Defined area with high levels of deprivation and low educational attainment that receives grants to raise education standards.
Electronic map
Map on a computer screen and/or the internet.
Electronic map    
Elevation montage
Display technique for helping people to understand and make changes to streetscapes.
Elevation montage    
Employment zone
Area where additional money is available to help the long-term unemployed into work.
Development of confidence and skills in individuals or communities leading to them being able to take more control over their own destinies.
Capacity building    
Professional or other person with technical expertise or in a position of authority who uses it to help people to do things for themselves. The term can also be used to refer to organisations which behave likewise.
Professional and other services that consciously encourage or allow users to participate.
Energy crop
Carbon neutral energy source. For example, short rotation coppice or willow plantation uses carbon dioxide to grow plants. Crops may then be burned to create energy - hence carbon neutral.
Energy descent action plan
Plan which focuses on energy use and the creation of low carbon communities. 
Energy fair
Event which allows householders to engage with suppliers and installers of energy saving equipment.
Energy from waste
The conversion of waste into a useable form of energy, often heat or electricity.
Energy performance certificate (EPC)
Provide home buyers and sellers with a rating of the energy efficiency of a property. A to G. 
Energy service company (ESCO)
Professional organisation, scheme or trust formed to plan or administer energy producing projects or design effective solutions. 
Enforcement action
Procedure by a local planning authority to ensure that the terms and conditions of a planning decision are carried out, or that development carried out without planning permission is brought under control.
Enforcement notice
Document served on a property owner by a local planning authority setting out the action necessary to correct any work or activity undertaken without planning permission or in breach of a condition.
Enquiry by Design
Intensive workshop process involving urban designers and local stakeholders. Devised for developing plans for new build and regeneration by The Prince’s Foundation.
The Prince's Foundation     Enquiry by Design    
Enspirited envisioning
Way of developing individual and shared visions of the future through personal and group development.
Participation works!    
Enterprise agency
Non-profit-making company whose prime objective is to respond through practical action to the economic and training needs of its local community. A principal activity is providing free advice and counselling to support the setting up and development of viable small businesses. Mostly public sector-led in partnership with the private sector but there are many exceptions.
Enterprise trust
Similar meaning to Enterprise agency
Enterprise agency    
Enterprise zone
Area for industrial development within an older urban area where businesses can benefit from relief from paying business rates and from relaxed planning restrictions.
Environment forum
Non-statutory body for discussing and co-ordinating environmental issues in an area.
Environment shop
Shop selling items and providing information which helps people improve their environment. Similarly architecture shop, conservation shop etc.
Environment shop    
Environment week
Week of activities designed to promote interest in, and debate on, the environment.
Activity week    
Environmental authority
Statutory body set up by Government with direct environmental responsibilities. In England, these are Natural England, English Heritage and the Environment Agency.
Environmental capital
Inclusive, participatory process for evaluating what environmental features and attitudes matter to local interest groups and why.
Environmental education
Programmes aimed at making people more aware of their environment and the forces which shape it.
Environmental impact assessment
Process whereby all impacts of a development are identified and their significance assessed. Increasingly a statutory requirement before planning permission is granted by a local authority.
Similar meaning to visioning.
Equality impact assessment
Evaluation tool which assesses the effect that a policy or procedure will have on a particular group of people. Promotes equality and aims to ensure there are no discriminatory effects.
Equity sharing
Similar meaning to Co-ownership
Estate Management Board (EMB)
Partnership between tenants and their landlord which gives tenants more control over the day-to-day running of their housing.
Evidence base
Knowledge used to support a decision or policy. For example information and data gathered by local planning authorities to justify the soundness of the policy approach set out in development plan documents, including physical, economic, and social characteristics of an area. Includes quantitative and qualitative data.
Evidence scanning
Evaluating evidence without ploughing through reams of statistics. Involves actions such as: checking a few key statistics; using other people’s analysis; testing statistics against your own knowledge; doing a small survey; finding an expert from amongst your group.
Examination in public (EIP)
Session to test the soundness of development plan documents. A document is considered sound if it is based on good evidence and prepared in accordance with accepted procedures. 
Displays of information. May be simply for presenting information or for getting feedback too.
Interactive exhibition    
Exit strategy
Arrangement for continuing the process of renewal and development after funding from a programme stops. Sometimes called a forward, continuation or succession strategy.
Extended school
School which opens up its facilities to the wider community outside of traditional school hours; for example sport facilities, ICT suites and after-school clubs. Aim to integrate the school and the community and provide public services not otherwise accessible to the general population.
Full service school    
The art and science of managing meetings and group processes. Bringing people together to decide what they wish to do, and to work together to decide how to do it.
Person who steers a process, meeting or workshop. Less dominant role than a "chairperson". Also known as a moderator.
Farmers market
Market exclusively for local food producers and countryside products.
Feasibility fund
Revolving fund providing grants to community groups for paying professional fees for the preparation of feasibility studies for community projects. Also known as a community projects fund.
Feasibility fund    
Feasibility study
Examination of the viability of an idea, usually resulting in a report.
Fence method
Prioritising procedure using a line with a fence in the middle to establish people"s views on conflicting alternatives.
Festival market
Market for bric-a-brac and crafts.
Traditional celebration or festival.
Field workshop
Workshop programme on location. Term used to describe events lasting several days involving a range of community profiling, risk assessment and plan-making activities.
Field workshop    
Financial exclusion
Where people do not have access to mainstream financial services (including high street banks), usually due to living in a poor area, being reliant on benefits, or having a low income.
Fish bowl
Workshop technique where participants sit around, and observe, a planning team working on a problem without taking part themselves.
Community Participation in Practice; A Practical Guide    
Five Ws plus H
What, When, Why, Who, Where and How. Useful checklist in planning any activity.
Large pad of paper on an easel. Standard equipment for participatory workshops as it allows notetaking to be visible.
Person who records points made at a workshop or plenary session on a flipchart or large sheet of paper pinned on a wall in full view of the participants.
Flood plain
Low-lying area next to a river or the sea where water flows in times of flood, or would flow but for the presence of flood defences.
Flood risk assessment
Study of the likelihood of flooding in a particular area.
Risk assessment    
Floor target
Minimum outcome required, usually of service providers by government.
Pasting up posters in public places, usually without permission from building owners or authorities.
Focus group
Small group of people who work through an issue in workshop sessions. Membership may be carefully selected or entirely random.
The number of people entering a place in a given time. Used to assess the viability of shopping areas. 
Non-statutory body for discussing and coordinating activity and acting as a pressure group for change. Term also used to describe a one-off open meeting aiming to create interaction.
Environment forum     Neighbourhood forum     Community planning forum     Public forum    
Forum theatre
Theatre which engages the audience in determining the plot. Can be a highly participative way of exploring how to break through blockages which can often hamper the potential of community planning.
Fossil fuel
Natural fuel such as coal or gas formed from the remains of living organisms. Invariably carbon-rich so burning them contributes to climate change. 
Residential centre that provides homes, training and work opportunities for homeless young people.
Community involvement in the production of development plan documents to encourage public input and consensus from the outset.
Full service school
One-stop centre for children, their families and the wider community where schools house a variety of public services such as healthcare, careers services, employment training, housing services and family welfare.
Extended school    
Full-scale simulation
Acting out a scenario to test a design idea using full-scale mock-ups. Particularly useful for helping people design new building forms.
Design simulation     Mock-up    
Future search conference
Highly structured two and a half day process allowing a community or organisation to create a shared vision for its future. Ideally 64 people take part; eight tables of eight.
Future search conference    
Futures workshop
Term used for a workshop devised to discuss options for the future. Various formats are possible.
Briefing workshop     Design workshop    
Gallery walk
Report back process where workshop flipchart sheets are pinned up at a plenary session and the reporter 'walks' past the sheets, using them as a prompt to summarise what took place.
The use of games to simulate real situations.
Gaming     Role play     Simulation    
Gap funding
Government incentive to encourage developers to build on unprofitable brownfield sites.
General permitted development order (GPDO)
Provides development rights for a specified range of developments which do not require an application for planning permission.
Geographic information system (GIS)
Computer-based system whereby mapping and information are linked for a variety of uses, such as capturing data justifying local development documents.
Geothermal technology
Transfer of energy from heat inside the earth, usually carried to the surface by superheated water and steam.
Giving evidence
Formal presentation of information, for instance to a public inquiry or local authority committee.
Global warming
Gradual heating of the earths atmosphere due to greenhouse gases, leading to climate change and rising sea levels. Renewable energy, energy efficient buildings and sustainable travel are examples of ways to reduce global warming by reducing the use of energy derived from fossil fuels which generates CO2 emissions. Also known as the greenhouse effect
Goal-oriented project planning (GOPP)
Tool for project management in which interactive workshops involving all stakeholders in a project together with an external moderator are held at different points in the project lifecycle. Uses logical framework analysis.
GOPP Moderators Association     Upgrading Urban Communities     Logical framework analysis    
Ways in which political, economic, social and cultural life is co-ordinated at global, national, regional and local levels.
Government circulars
Documents that provide non-statutory advice and guidance on particular issues to expand on subjects referred to in legislation.
Green belt
Area restricted from building use and allowed to remain in a natural state or retained for agricultural use to contain development, preserve the character of the countryside and provide open space.
Green corridor
Area of nature linking housing areas to cycle networks, town and city centres, places of employment and community facilities. They help to promote sustainable forms of transport such as walking and cycling within urban areas and can also act as vital linkages for wildlife.
Green sheet
Feedback form (usually printed on green paper) for SpeakOut workshop participants to fill in if they wish further information, want to be contacted after the event or feel that issues they wish to raise were not addressed fully during the workshop. The workshop Chair or other representative of the client should respond to all green sheets in writing or by telephone as soon as possible after the workshop.
Green wedge
Open area around and between parts of a settlement which maintains the distinction between countryside and built up areas, prevents the merging of adjacent places and provides recreational opportunities.
Greenfield development
Development on land that has never previously been developed.
Greenhouse gases
Atmosphetric gases which contribute to climate change. Naturally occurring examples include water vapour, carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide and ozone. Some human activities increase air pollution from these gases, including fossil fuel combustion within motor vehicles and some power stations and space and water heating in dwellings. 
Water present underground, within strata known as aquifers.
Group interview
Pre-arranged discussion with an invited group to analyse topics or issues against a checklist of points or local concerns.
Group modelling
Use of physical models as a basis for working in groups to learn, explore and make decisions about the environment.
Guided buses
Buses for which travel direction is controlled automatically by electronic or kerb guidance along a defined route.
Guided visualisation
Group process using mental visualisation techniques for establishing a community's aspirations.
Participation Works!    
Habitable room
Any room used or intended to be used for sleeping, cooking, living or eating. Does not include bathrooms, toilets, service rooms, corridors, laundries, hallways or utility rooms. Term used in connection with assessments for density and daylight and sunlight levels. 
The social and economic, as well as physical, shelter essential for well-being.
Hands-on exhibition.
Similar meaning as Interactive exhibition
Interactive exhibition    
Hands-on planning
Method of community involvement in planning where small groups make plans for the future using table top plans or flexible cardboard models. Often referred to as Planning for Real but this term has been registered by the Neighbourhood Initiatives Foundation to apply to its own method only.
Planning for Real ®    
Have your say event
Drop-in workshop set up to enable people to make their views known in an informal setting. 
Have your say event     SpeakOut    
Phenomenon that poses a threat to people, structures or economic assets and which may cause a disaster. It could be either human-made or naturally occurring.
Hazard analysis
Identification of types of hazard faced by a community, their intensity, frequency and location.
Hazardous waste
Waste that can cause harm to human health or the environment.
Headline indicators
Main set of data that describes the factors to be changed.
Tool based on worksheets and community consultation to help identify the strengths and weaknesses of a town as a basis for producing plans of action. Designed by The Countryside Agency (now English Nature). 
Healthy Cities
Programme led by the World Health Organisation to put health on the agenda of decision-makers in cities and to build strong support for public health at the local level.
Heavy rail
The traditional railway network, using standard rolling stock. In contrast to light rail
Heritage centre
Place aimed at helping people understand, and engage in, the historic local built environment. Key elements: old photos, old artefacts, leaflets, books, information sheets, maps, postcards, models, trails.
Architecture centre     Local heritage initiative    
Heritage coast
Area of largely undeveloped, unspoilt coast, where attention is focused on managing the sometimes competing needs of conservation, recreation, tourism and commercial activity such as shipping and fishing in a co-ordinated way.
High court challenge
The process by which an applicant may challenge a planning decision or a notice of intention to adopt a development plan in the High Court on a point of law. But other appeal procedures may apply first and prior legal advice is advisable.
High demand housing area
Location where a high demand for housing results in expensive pricing and rents making it difficult for people to enter the housing market. For example, some rural locations and commuter areas.
Higher tier authority
Local authority with elected councillors (county councils, metropolitan bodies and unitary authorities); so called because they are a higher level of government than district councils in counties with two tiers of government.
Highway authority
Organisation responsible for producing the local transport plan and for managing existing or proposed new roads. Usually the county council, metropolitan council or unitary authority.
Historic buildings trust
Charitable organisation set up to preserve historic buildings.
Historic parks and gardens
Designed landscapes identified as worthy of protection and listed on the Register of Parks and Gardens of Special Historic Interest (maintained by English Heritage in the UK). They have no additional statutory controls, but Government planning policy says local planning authorities should protect them when preparing development plans and determining planning applications.
Historical profile
Key events and trends in a communitys development, usually displayed visually.
Community profiling    
Historical profiling
Construction of historical profile in groups. Information about past events is gathered to explain the present and predict possible future scenarios. One approach involves people describing and explaining their life history with respect to particular issues. Information is marked up on maps or charts to build a comprehensive time-line of events and issues that mould and affect a community.
Home zone
Area where roads are shared by vehicles, cyclists and pedestrians to promote quality of life, community spirit and safer play and recreation.
Homeowners file
File of book-keeping schedules designed to help families to control the construction and management of their homes.
Programme in which property owners (usually local authorities) offer substandard property for sale at low cost to householders who will work on them in their own time, doing basic repairs and renovation to standards monitored by the original owners.
House in multiple occupation (HMO)
A building or part of a building (eg, a flat) which is: occupied by more than one household and in whcih more than one household shares an amenity (or the bulding lacks an amenity) such as a bathroom, toliet or cooking facilities; occupied by more than one household and is a converted building which does not entirely comprise self-contained flats (whether or not there is also a sharing or lack of amenities); comprised entirely of onverted self-contained flats that do not meet the minimum standards of the Building Regulations 1981.
House manual
Record of useful information and tips from previous occupants on how to manage and look after a house.
Household waste
Refuse from household collection rounds, street sweepings, public litter bins, bulky items collected from households and refuse which householders themselves take to household waste recovery centres and bring sites.
Household waste recovery centre
Similar meaning as Civic amenity site
Civic amenity site    
Housing association
Association run by an elected management committee which uses government money to provide housing in areas and for people which the government believes to be a high priority. Building society money is also increasingly used to fund housing associations.
Housing co-operative
Organisation which owns or manages housing and which is owned and managed by the occupants of that housing. Often referred to as a housing co-op.
Co-operative     Secondary co-operative    
Housing density
The amount of housing provided in a given area.
Housing land availability (HLA)
Amount of land allocated for residential use in development plans which is waiting for development.
Hub space
Place which inspires and engenders collaboration, enterprise and /or innovation.

Human capital
Ability of individuals to do productive work; includes physical and mental health, strength, stamina, knowledge, skills, motivation and a constructive and co-operative attitude.
Social capital    
Group activity aimed at making people feel comfortable with each other. Often held at the start of action planning events.
Ideas competition
Competition for generating options for improving a neighbourhood, building or site aimed at stimulating creative thinking and generating interest.
Ideas competition    
Illustrated questionnaire
Questionnaire with pictures to find out peoples design preferences.
Choice catalogue     Questionnaire survey    
Method for establishing positive initiatives based on a structured approach to imagining the future.
Participation Works!    
Imaging day
Day when people visualise the future with the assistance of a skilled artist.
Immediate report writing
Writing reports in the field or at an event rather doing it later in the office.
The controlled burning of waste. Energy may also be recovered in the form of heat.
Independent examination
The process by which a planning inspector may publicly examine a development plan document (DPD) or a statement of community involvement (SCI), before issuing a report. The findings set out in the report are binding upon the local planning authority.
Independent retailer
Retailer operating separately and outside of a larger company chain.
Measure that shows whether or not an objective is being achieved.
Infill development
Building on a relatively small gap between existing buildings.
Informal hearing
A planning appeal hearing undertaken in a structured way, but without the full formality of a local inquiry.
Informal walk
Walking in a group without a definite route, stopping to chat and discuss issues as they arise.
Community profiling    
Information technology (IT)
The technology required for information processing. In particular, the use of computers and computer software to convert, store, process, transmit and retrieve information.
The basic services necessary for development to take place. For example, roads, electricity, sewerage, water, education and health facilities. 
A hearing by a planning inspector into a planning matter such as a local plan or appeal. Sometimes known as a public local inquiry.
Inset map
Development plan map showing a particular area of interest on the wider proposals map at a larger, more readable scale.
Inset village
A village treated separately from the green belt or other countryside protection policies relating to surrounding land, allowing more development.
Person employed to preside over inquiries into development plans and rule on planning appeals. Appointed by the Planning Inspectorate, an independent agency of Government appointed by the Secretary of State.
Interactive display
Visual display which allows people to participate by making additions or alterations. Also known as a hands-on display.
Interactive display    
Interactive exhibition
Exhibition which allows people to participate by making additions or alterations. Also known as a hands-on exhibition.
Interactive display     Open house event    
Intermediate housing
Submarket housing which is above target rents but below open market levels. This includes various forms of shared ownership housing, key worker housing and submarket rent provision.
Recorded conversation, usually with prepared questions, with individuals or groups. Useful for information gathering. More flexible and interactive than a questionnaire.
Group interview     Key informant interview     Semi-structured interview    
Jigsaw display
Exhibit where groups prepare different parts which are then assembled as a whole.
Judicial review
Procedure by which the High Court may review the reasonableness of a decision made by a local authority, for example a planning decision.
A hands-on toolkit for creative engagement invented in Southern Africa and developed at the University of Manchester, UK. Ketso means Action in Sesotho, the language of Lesotho. See
Ketso     Ketso kit    
Key diagram
Visual interpretation of the spatial strategy of a local plan as set out in a local authority core strategy.
Key informant
Person with special knowledge.
Key informant interview
Informal discussion based on a pre-determined set of questions with people who have special knowledge.
see also Interview
Kilowatt (KW)
Unit of electrical power commonly used to measure output from a generator. One Kilowatt = 1 000 watts.
Stands for 'Keep It Simple, Stupid'. Useful reminder in a complex field.
Knowledge-based industry
High technology manufacturing (for example computers and pharmaceuticals) and knowledge-based services (for example telecommunications and business services) which are considered important for economic development.
Ladder of participation
Useful and popular analogy for likening the degree of citizen participation in any activity to a series of rungs on a ladder. First put forward in 1969 (by Sherry Arnstein) with 8 rungs:
1. Citizen control.
2. Delegated power.
3. Partnership.
4. Placation.
5. Consultation.
6. Informing.
7. Therapy.
8. Manipulation.
This has been modified in many different ways by many people since.
Participation Matrix     The Guide to Effective Participation     Participation matrix    
Land compensation
Provisions for the compensation of land compulsorily acquired in the public interest.
Compulsory purchase order (CPO)    
Land raising
Using waste material to raise the height of the land. Does not include the spreading of sewage sludge on agricultural land.
Land use
The way land is used or developed.
Land use planning
The framework for how land is used and developed. Largely provided by the town and country planning system, which aims to secure the most efficient and effective use of land in the public interest, and to ensure that facilities like roads, schools and sewers are built where they are needed.
Stock of land with planning permissions but where development has yet to take place. Can be of land for minerals, housing or any other use.
Disposal of waste into the ground, including the construction of landforms above ground level (land raising).
Land raising    
Landfill directive
European Union requirements on landfill to ensure high standards for disposal and to stimulate waste minimisation.
Landfill gas
Gas generated in a landfill site accepting biodegradable material. Mainly methane and carbon dioxide.
The appearance of land, including its shape, form, colours and elements, the way these components combine in a way that is distinctive to particular localities, the way they are perceived, and an area\'s cultural and historical associations. Landscape character can be expressed through landscape appraisal, and maps or plans.
Landscape appraisal
Method of assessing appearance and essential characteristics of a landscape.
Landscape character
The distinct and recognisable pattern of elements that occur consistently in a particular type of landscape. Reflects particular combinations of geology, landform, soils, vegetation, land use and human settlement.
Landscape character assessment
Process for describing an area\'s sense of place, features and attributes. Useful foundation for making planning and land management decisions for an area.
Local character workshop    
Large group intervention
Similar meaning to Critical mass event
Critical mass event    
Event to promote the start of an initiative or project. Useful for generating interest and involvement.
The way buildings, routes and open spaces are placed or laid out on the ground in relation to each other.
Water that has percolated through a solid and leached out some of the constituents. Often relates to water coming into contact with decomposing waste material in landfills, thereby becoming contaminated.
Sheet of paper providing information, usually produced in large quantities. Standard publicity technique.
Extent to which a proposed activity benefits people outside the target area or group that it was intended for.
Clarity of built form. Locations, streets and open spaces that have a clear image and are easy to understand. Places with good legibility have a strong sense of identity and are easy to find your way around. 
Additional money or activity that an investment in a programme leads to.
Life cycle analysis
Technique which measures the total impact of a product during its production, distribution, use and recycling, treatment or disposal. Useful for sustainable waste management.
Lifetime homes
Housebuilding approach that enables inhabitants to remain in the same home throughout all stages of their life. Developed by the Joseph Rowntree Foundation.
Light rail
Local railway or tram system, sometimes capable of sharing routes with vehicles or heavy railways.
Heavy rail    
Limits of development
Boundaries of an area within which development proposals would be acceptable. They seek to prevent development from gradually extending into surrounding countryside.
Linkage diagram
Shows flows, connections and causality.
Listed building
Structure of special architectural or historic interest. Graded I, II* or II with grade I being the highest. Listing includes the interior as well as the exterior of a building and Listed building consent is required for almost all works to a Listed building. English Heritage is responsible for designating buildings for listing in England.
Listed building consent
Permission required for the demolition, in whole or in part of a listed building, or for any works of alteration or extension that would affect the character of the building. Usually granted by the local planning authority. All applications are referred to English Heritage which, in some cases, has powers to intervene.
Listed building    
Listed building enforcement notice
Document issued by a local planning authority if work is carried out on a listed building without consent, and requiring that the building be brought back to its former state or specifying other remedial works.
Listed building    
Facilitator at an issue stall in a SpeakOut.
Somewhat loose measure of the quality of life where needs that are justifiable according to natural justice are met.
Living over the shop scheme
Programme to encourage people to occupy vacant premises over shops, usually by offering grant aid. Town centre regeneration method.
Influencing decision-makers through individual and group face-to-face persuasion or letter writing.
Pertaining to a particular rural or urban place or area.
Local agenda 21
Comprehensive action strategy prepared by local authorities to help achieve sustainable development.
Local area agreement (LAA)
Agreement between local and national government that gives local authorities more flexibility in the way in which they set and meet targets and deliver public services.
Local authority
Organisation governing local public services in an area. For instance; borough council, county council, town council, village council.
Local centre
Small group of shops and perhaps limited service outlets of a local nature serving a small catchment. For example, a suburban housing estate.  Sometimes referred to as a local neighbourhood centre.
Local character workshop
Workshop designed to help people identify what makes an area special. Usually undertaken as part of preparing a local design statement or landscape character assessment. Involves mapping and photo surveys.
Landscape character assessment     Local design statement    
Local design statement
Published statement produced by a community identifying the distinctive character of the place. The aim is for it to be used by planning authorities to ensure that future development and change is sympathetic and has community support. May be adopted as a supplementary planning document. Common types are town design statements, parish design statements and village design statements.
Local design statement    
Local designation
Identification of land, usually for its landscape or nature conservation interest, in development plans. Confers a level of protection less than that which applies to national statutory designations like a national park but greater than that which applies to undesignated areas.
Local development documents (LDDs)
These include both development plan documents (which form part of the statutory development plan) and supplementary planning documents (which do not). LDDs collectively deliver the spatial planning strategy for a local planning authority area.
Development plan documents (DPDs)    
Local development framework (LDF)
A suite of documents that outlines how planning will be managed in an area. Includes core strategy, supplementary planning documents and a Statement of Community Involvement.
Local development order (LDO)
A power given to local authorities to extend permitted development rights or grant permission for any development contained in the order, removing the need to apply for planning permission.
Local development scheme (LDS)
Scheduled plan of a local planning authority for the preparation of local development documents. Identifies and describes the documents and when they will be produced. Covers a three-year timespan and may be updated annually. The local planning authority local development scheme must be approved by the Secretary of State.
Local environmental resource centre
Resource centre focusing on local environmental issues.
Resource centre    
Local government ombudsman
Person who investigates complaints of injustice arising from maladministration by local authorities and certain other bodies. The objective of the Ombudsmen is to secure, where appropriate, satisfactory redress for complainants and better administration for the authorities.
Local heritage initiative
Process for helping people record and care for their local landscape, landmarks and traditions.
Local housing company
Local authority promoted housing development and management organisation, possibly with wider regeneration objectives. Likely to be established in partnership ownership between a local authority with other public and/or private sector organisations.
Local inquiry
Inquiry into a local plan.
Local landscape designation
Non-statutory and locally designated areas, outside the national landscape designated areas, which are considered by the local planning authority to be of particular landscape value to the local area.
Local listing
Locally important building valued for contribution to local scene or for local historical situations but not meriting listed building status.
Local nature reserve
Non-statutory habitat of local significance designated by local authorities where protection and public understanding of nature conservation is encouraged.
Local need housing
Housing requirements generated by the indigenous population rather than by in-migration.
Local people
People who live in a particular rural or urban place or area.
Local plan
Plan that sets out detailed policies and specific proposals for the development and use of land in a district and guides most day-to-day planning decisions.
Local planning authority
The local government body which is responsible for formulating planning policies, controlling development through determining planning applications and taking enforcement action when necessary. This is either a district council, unitary authority, metropolitan council or national park authority.
Local public sector board
Allows all public sector organisations (e.g. councils, police, health, fire) in a locality to meet and work together on an agreed services improvement plan.
Local regeneration agency
Organisation set up to undertake regeneration work in an area.
Local resource centre
Place providing information and support for people at a community level.
Resource centre    
Local roads
Public roads (including B and C roads) which are the responsibility of the local highway authority.
Local strategic partnership (LSP)
Partnership between different parts of the public sector with private business and the voluntary and community sector in order to deliver services more effectively. Designed to rationalise and simplify other local partnership arrangements and work with neighbourhood-based partnerships. Expected to prepare and implement the Community Strategy and develop targets for Public Service Agreements.
Community strategy    
Local support team
Locally-based team providing expertise for an activity or event.
Local sustainability model
Process allowing a community to assess its present position and test the likely effect of projects.
publication or film Participation Works!
Participation Works!    
Local transport plan
Plan that sets out a local highways authority policies and strategy on transport on a five-yearly basis. They are submitted to central Government, which approves and provides funding for the measures contained in the plan.
Locally listed buildings
Buildings designated by the local planning authority to be of local significance and included in a local list. Although they are not statutorily protected, in general, close scrutiny will be given to any development affecting them.
Logical framework analysis
Method for thoroughly testing the effectiveness of any project or proposal by completing a table known as a Log Frame. Assesses goal, objectives, outputs, activities, indicators, assumptions, inputs and effects. Much used by international funding agencies.
Goal-oriented project planning (GOPP)     
Looking and Learning
Method for collaborative planning with a main feature being visits by key stakeholders to other places, both successful and unsuccessful, to learn the lessons.
Low demand housing
Location where the housing market has collapsed or is close to doing so resulting in a low demand for housing or actual abandonment. 
Low-cost housing
Housing affordable by people on low incomes.
Affordable housing    
Realigning the allocation of main public sector resources, such as the police and health services, to target the most deprived areas and sustain regeneration activity piloted through short-term funding.
Maintenance manual
Instructions on how to maintain a building or open space. Important for helping users to keep places in good order.
Flat with more than one level.
Managed workspace
Communally managed building for individual, and independent, enterprises sharing common support facilities and services. Sometimes known as a working community.
Management committee
Governing body of a project or organisation. Similar to board of directors in a company.
Management plan
Plan for the detailed, sometimes day-to-day management or conservation of important areas, including nature conservation, archaeology, or historic sites, in order to maintain and enhance those special features or qualities.
Physical plotting of various characteristics of an area in two dimensions. May be done individually or communally.
Activity mapping     Community mapping     Mental mapping     Mind map     Parish mapping     Mapping    
Place for buying and selling goods and services. An important regeneration tool. Types of market include: street market, covered market, farmers market, festival market.
Market town
Small town, generally with a population of up to 10,000 people, which supports an economy and community containing both the settlement and a defined rural hinterland.
Market town action plan
Document which sets out and justifies the various projects and initiatives decided upon. Will normally include: summary of the town’s strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats; vision which responds to those elements; statement of strategic objectives; listing of specific projects with funding and phasing details.
Overall planning framework for the future of a settlement. May be highly detailed or schematic. Used to provide a vision and structure to guide development.
Material consideration
A matter which must be taken into account in making decisions about an application for planning permission or other consents, alongside the statutory development plan. Include central government policies and guidance, non statutory plans and the relevant planning comments made by consultees.
Materials recycling facility (MRF)
Facility for sorting and packing recyclable waste.
Diagram in the form of a grid allowing comparison of two variables. Used for assessing options.
Voluntary process of helping people resolve their differences with the assistance of a neutral person.
Event where people come together to discuss and decide. May be formal or informal, public or private.
Mental mapping
Production of maps by individuals or communities showing how they perceive their neighbourhood (as opposed to geographically accurate maps).
Banking system which provides small loans to poor people without collateral.
Microplanning workshop
Intensive planning procedure developed specifically for upgrading settlements in developing countries involving a minimum of preparation, materials and training. Also referred to as community action planning.
Microplanning workshop    
Key events with dates marking stages in the progress of a project or programme.
Mind map
Diagram showing people's perceptions of trends and linkages. Not a geographical map. Used in future search conferences.
Diagrams     Future search conference    
Mini visioning
Basic and succinct visioning workshops.
Mission statement
Written explanation of the purpose of a project, event or organisation. Usually brief and to the point. Useful for avoiding misunderstanding, particularly in partnerships.
Measures taken to minimise the impact of a disaster. By modifying the hazard itself or by reducing vulnerability to it. Ranges from physical measures such as flood defenses, to raising people's living standards so they no longer need to inhabit areas at risk. Mitigation can take place before, during and after a disaster.
Mixed use
Or mixed use development. Provision of a mix of complementary uses, such as residential, community and leisure, on a site or within a particular area.
Mobile unit
Caravan or mobile home converted into an office/studio as a base for undertaking community planning activity on location.
Mobile unit    
Full-size representation of a change or development, usually on its proposed site, prior to finalising the design.
Mode of transport
Method by which people or goods travel. For instance bus, foot, cycle, train, car, plane, boat.
Making models. Usually refers to making models as a group process. Similar to mapping but in three dimensions instead of two.
see also Mapping
see also Models
Mapping     Models    
Physical three-dimensional constructions simulating a building or neighbourhood.
Moderated planning workshop
Structured meeting in which partners in a project can discuss and
agree objectives, goals and responsibilities to create a
plan for further action. Run by a neutral facilitator. Increasingly used in multi-partner, transnational projects in Europe.
Similar meaning as Facilitator
The regular and systematic collection and analysis of information to measure the progress of policy implementation. For instance, planning authorities are required by law to produce an annual report covering the monitoring of policies in their statutory development plans.
Moving spirits
People in a community who want to improve things for the better and who are prepared to give time and thought to something they think might help. Also referred to as movers and shakers or social entrepreneurs.
Multi-use games area (MUGA)
Enclosed area using a synthetic grass or hard surface for playing a combination of sports, for example five-a-side soccer or netball.
Additional or second level effect of a programme over and above that resulting directly from programme funds.
Multiplier effect
The extended impact of an economic action upon business activity and/or upon employment. For example, a new major business may place orders with a smaller one helping to create extra jobs.
Municipal solid waste (MSW)
Household waste and any other waste collected by a waste collection authority, such as from municipal parks and gardens, beach cleansing and the clearance of flytipping. 
Mutual aid
Where people help each other without any formal organisation.
National nature reserve
Area designated to secure protection and management of the most important areas of wildlife habitat, and to provide a resource for scientific research. All national nature reserves are also sites of special scientific interest.
National park
Places of outstanding natural beauty. Designation provides powers to conserve and enhance their natural beauty, wildlife and cultural heritage and to promote opportunities for public understanding and enjoyment of their special qualities. 
Nationally significant infrastructure project (NSIP)
The term covers a range of projects in the fields of energy, transport, water and waste above certain size threshold (set out in Sections 14 to 30 of the Planning Act 2008). Promoters of NSIPs have to apply for permission to develop by way of a development consent order to the Infrastructure Planning Commission (IPC).
A district within a town, city or rural area, often seen as providing the physical location of a community or providing a sense of identity.
Neighbourhood branding
Establishing an identity for an area. 
Neighbourhood council
Elected body at neighbourhood level with certain statutory powers. Urban equivalent of a parish council and effectively a mini local authority.
Neighbourhood development order
An Order made by a local planning authority (under the Town and Country Planning Act 1990) through which Parish Councils and neighbourhood forums can grant planning permission for a specific development proposal or for specific classes of development. 
Neighbourhood forum
Non-statutory body for discussing a neighbourhood's affairs and acting as a pressure group for improvements. Members may be publicly elected - usually in categories (eg residents, traders, churches, etc.) - or be nominated by organisations entitled to be represented under the constitution. May be effectively a non-statutory neighbourhood council although procedural practice varies considerably.
Neighbourhood management
Way of encouraging stakeholders to work with service providers to help improve the quality of services delivered in deprived neighbourhoods.
Neighbourhood plan
Plan for a neighbourhood. Term often used loosely to describe any plan for a local area. Also used formally in England to describe the lowest tier of statutory plans introduced by the Localism Act 2011.
Neighbourhood planning
The process by which a plan to guide and shape the development or regeneration of a neighbourhood is created. Good practice requires the active and influential involvement of local residents and businesses.
Neighbourhood planning office
Local office established to co-ordinate community planning activity.
Neighbourhood planning office    
Neighbourhood renewal
Programme to narrow the gap between rich and poor communities involving physical, economic and social recovery of deprived areas.
Neighbourhood renewal fund (NRF)
Provides public services and communities in a country’s poorest local authority districts with extra funds to tackle deprivation.
Neighbourhood skills survey
Survey to establish what skills and abilities people have in a neighbourhood. Used to find out what a community can do for itself and to generate interest. Sometimes referred to as a neighbourhood talent survey.
see also Neighbourhood skills survey checklist
see also Resource survey
Neighbourhood skills survey checklist    
Neighbourhood talent survey
Same meaning as Neighbourhood skills survey
Neighbourhood skills survey    
Neighbourhood warden
Semi-official presence in a local area to prevent anti-social behaviour, maintain the local environment, reduce crime and fear of crime. Provides a complementary service alongside the police and environmental services.
An interview-based mapping tool that helps people understand, visualize, discuss, and improve situations in which many different actors influence outcomes.
Netmap blog     VisualComplexity    
Exchanging experience with people engaged in similar activities. Usually in an informal manner.
New localism
Drive to devolve power from central departments to the local level. Signals a move away from centralisation towards strengthened local centres. Involves an acceptance that local problems cannot be solved by standardised approaches imposed from above and that local agencies need more space to meet national priorities more effectively.
New town
City, town, or community created in a rural or underdeveloped area and designed to be self-sufficient with its own housing, education, commerce and recreation facilities.
Means of communication using print or email.
Newspaper supplement
Special insert or section of a newspaper. Can be used to cover local design issues.
Newspaper supplement    
Non governmental organisation (NGO)
Voluntary and non-profit-distributing organisation. The difference between an NGO and a CBO (community-based organisation) is that an NGO is normally organised and funded from outside the local community in which it operates.
Community based organisation (CBO)    
Non-fossil fuel
Source of energy not derived from the combustion of fossil fuels. Examples include solar, wind or hydroelectric power.
Not For Profit Organisation
Any society, association or organisation not carried out for the profit or gain of any member and whose rules do not allow money, property or any other benefits to be distributed to any of its members.
Person who records points made at a workshop or plenary session with a view to writing up a record and/or making a presentation of the results.
What is trying to be achieved.
Off-setting biases
Being self-critically aware of biases in behaviour and learning, and deliberately countering them.
Offshore renewable energy project
Project to generate electricity such as offshore wind or wave generators. 
One stop shop
Single multi-purpose facility that enables local residents to access a wide range of services.
Online consultation
Seeking peoples views using the internet. 
Online consultation    
Open day
Day when a project or organisation encourages people to come and find out what it is doing and how it works. Often used to generate interest and momentum.
Open design competition
Competition open to everyone. Contrasts with limited or closed competitions to which entry is restricted.
Ideas competition    
Open house event
Event designed to allow those promoting development initiatives to present them to a wider public and secure reactions in an informal manner. Halfway between an exhibition and a workshop.
Open house event    
Open space
Unenclosed areas of public value, including landscaped areas, playing fields, play areas, rivers and lakes which offer opportunities for sport and recreation or act as a visual amenity and haven for wildlife.
Open space technology
Framework within which open space workshops are held.
Open space workshop    
Open space workshop
Workshop process for generating commitment to action in communities or organisations. Features include starting without an agenda.
Open space workshop    
Opencast working
Surface mining to obtain minerals, where the waste is cast from the working face to the rear as the mineral is exposed.
Opinion survey
Survey to find out what people think about an issue.
Option appraisal
Process of assessing a range of options to identify the particular projects to be undertaken.
Results of projects or programmes, usually unmeasurable (eg, people are happier).
Outline application
An application for planning permission to establish that a development is acceptable in principle, subject to subsequent approval of detailed matters. Does not apply to applications for a change of use.
Planning application    
Measurable results of projects or programmes (eg, number of
trees planted).
Taking consultation to the people rather than expecting them to come to you.
Non-local people. Usually refers to professionals and facilitators.
An amount of development (for example, the quantity of buildings or intensity of use) that is excessive in terms of demands on infrastructure and services, or its impact on local amenity and character.
Term used to describe the effect when a development or building affords an outlook over adjoining land or property, often causing loss of privacy.
The effect of a development or building on the amount of natural light presently enjoyed by a neighbouring property, resulting in a shadow being cast over that neighbouring property.
Term often used to refer to a sense of responsibility for an initiative or project. eg, 'People will have ownership of an idea or a project if they have been involved in creating it'.
Pair-wise ranking
Rapid and simple way of selecting the most important issues or problems facing a community. Brainstorming generates a preliminary list. A group of people then vote on the significance of every item against each other item using a matrix.
A coherent and mutually supporting pattern of concepts, values, methods and action, amenable or claiming to be amenable, to wide application.
Parish council
The third tier of local government (created by Local Government Act 1894). Whether called parish or town council is dependent on the number of residents. Members elected by local community to serve four-year term. Funding raised by precept on adult residents of area. Comment on planning applications and seek to influence policy of district council. Contribute to village design statements. 
Parish mapping
Arts based way in which a community can explore and express what they value in their place through the creation of maps out of a wide variety of materials.
Mapping     Common Ground    
Parish plan
Statement of how a local community (usually in a rural area) sees itself developing over the next few years.
Act of being involved in something.
Participation matrix
A simple illustration of how different levels of participation are appropriate at different stages of a project.

Participation matrix         
Participation training
Short courses or workshop sessions on participation approaches. May be aimed at professionals or community activists.
When everything has to be checked by everyone. Too much participation.
Participatory 3D Modelling (P3DM)
Merges conventional spatial information (contours) with people's mental maps; makes information tangible and meaningful-to-all, and visualizes scaled and geocoded indigenous spatial knowledge.
Participatory Avenues    
Participatory appraisal
An approach to gaining a rapid in-depth understanding of a community, or certain aspects of a community, based on the participation of that community and a range of visual techniques. Allows people to share and record aspects of their own situation, conditions of life, knowledge, perceptions, aspirations, preferences and develop plans for action. Not restricted to planning issues. Many terms used to imply similar concept including participatory learning and action.
Community profiling     Whose Reality Counts?    
Participatory budgeting
Mechanism which brings local communities closer to the decision-making process regarding the allocation of public budgets.
Participatory Budgeting UK    
Participatory building evaluation
Method for users and providers to jointly assess the effectiveness of buildings after they have been built.
User Participation in Building Design and Management    
Participatory democracy
Process which involves people directly in decision-making which affects them, rather than through formally elected representatives such as councillors or MPs as in representative democracy.
Participatory design
Design processes which involve the users of the item or places being designed.
Participatory editing
Method of involving large numbers of people in producing reports and other material.
see also methods
Participatory editing    
Participatory monitoring and evaluation (PME)
Monitoring and evaluation undertaken with the participation of those who took part in the activity being monitored and evaluated.
Participatory rapid appraisal (PRA)
Similar meaning to Participatory appraisal
Participatory appraisal    
Participatory theatre
The use of physical movement and creativity to explore people's experience and develop a common vision.
Participation Works!    
Agreement between two or more individuals or organisations to work together to achieve common aims.
Managing Partnerships    
Partnership agreement
Formal document setting out the terms and conditions of a partnership arrangement.
Passive solar heating
Heating using a simple solar collector, building materials, or an architectural design to capture and store heat from the sun. Simple examples include a garden greenhouse, or a south-facing window in a dwelling.
Project or programme which tries out new approaches that others can learn from.
Pattern language
Method devised to enable untrained people to design their own buildings and cities in accordance with well-tried principles of good design.
A Pattern Language    
Peer review
Evaluation of a piece of work by experts in the same field. Widely used for funding and publishing proposals but can also be useful for action plans and development proposals.  
Pendleton criteria
Assessment of e-planning capabilities. A series of currently 21 criteria relating to how much of a local planning authority’s planning service is available online and how easy it is to use. Local planning authorities are scored against these criteria.
Peoples organisation
Similar meaning to Community based organisation
Community based organisation (CBO)    
Peoples wall
Wall covered with large sheets of paper where visitors to a design fest or workshop can write and draw.
Percent for participation
Campaign to get a percentage of total development costs spent on participation. Started by the Royal Institute of British Architects Community Architecture Group.
Performance management framework
Strategies, plans, policies and indicators that enable the performance of an organisation (usually a local authority) to be effectively and efficiently monitored in an open and transparent manner.
Approach to designing sustainable environments based on ecological principles of co-operation with nature.
Permaculture design course
Courses aimed at making groups self-reliant and sustainable and helping them to take initiatives. Introductory courses last a weekend. Main courses are 2 weeks or a series of weekends.
Permaculture Association     The Permaculture Teachers Handbook    
Permitted development
Or permitted development rights. Building works and uses as defined by the general permitted development order and use classes order as those that can be undertaken without the need for specific planning permission from the local planning authority, unless those rights have been removed by virtue of an article 4 direction.
Photo survey
Survey of locality using cameras.
Photo survey    
Conversion of solar radiation (rays from the sun) to electricity by the effect of photons (tiny packets of light) on the electrons in a solar cell. For example, the photo-voltaic panels installed on the roofs of houses to generate energy.
Pile sorting
Method of categorising by sorting cards or other items into piles. Used in group sessions.
The ways in which local players collectively use their influence, powers, creativity and abilities to create attractive, prosperous and safe communities, places where people want to live, work and do business. (
A way of assessing the qualities of a place, showing what improvements are needed, and focusing people on working together to achieve them.
The process through which we work together to shape our public spaces.
Plan-led system
The principle that decisions on planning applications should be made in accordance with the adopted development plan, unless there are other material considerations that may indicate otherwise. This means that the statutory development plans for an area are the most important factor to be taken into account when making a decision on a planning application.
Planning aid scheme
The provision of free and independent information and advice on town planning to groups and individuals who cannot afford consultancy fees.
Planning aid scheme    
Planning application
Administrative process by which permission to carry out development is sought from the local planning authority. The form and content of the application is laid down in guidance. Applications can be made in outline or detailed form for some categories of development.
Planning assistance kit
Series of worksheets designed to assist community organisations in physical planning, implementation and management of their environment.
Planning assistance team
Similar to a design assistance team. Event programme
started by US Air Force using a R/UDAT process on
weekdays for planning issues relating to its bases.
Design assistance team    
Planning brief
Outline of the vision for the future of an area which indicates the broad principles that should be followed in its development. Written to encourage development and give clear guidance to potential developers. Can include issues such as linkages to surrounding areas as well as uses, type of buildings, spaces and density.
Planning condition
Requirement attached to a planning permission which has to be met by the developer unless they successfully appeal against it. The five policy tests for conditions are that they must be necessary, relevant to planning, relevant to the development to be permitted, enforceable, precise and reasonable in all other respects.
Planning day
Day when interested parties work intensively together developing urban design options for a site or neighbourhood.
see also methods
Planning day    
Planning department
Section of local authority dealing with planning issues.
Planning for Real ®
Technique for community involvement in planning and development focussing on the construction and use of flexible cardboard models and priority cards. Promoted and branded by the Neighbourhood Initiatives Foundation.
Planning for Real    
Planning gain
Benefits secured from a developer as part of a planning approval. For example, affordable housing, community facilities, a new footpath or road.
Planning inspectorate
Independent Government agency that processes planning and enforcement appeals against the decisions of local planning authorities and holds inquiries into local development plans. It also deals with a wide variety of other planning-related casework, including listed building consent appeals, advertisement appeals and reporting on planning applications.
Planning permission
Consent given by a local planning authority for building operations that do not constitute permitted development or uses permitted by the use classes order. Usually subject to conditions and sometimes a legal agreement.
Planning portal
Online service for planning provided by central government. Makes it possible to apply for planning permission as well as submit and track an appeal online. Also to search for planning applications locally and nationally. 
Planning register
Record of all planning applications and decisions open to public inspection. Local planning authorities are statutorily obliged to maintain them.
Planning weekend
Similar meaning to community planning weekend
Planning weekend     Community planning weekend    
Plenary session
Meeting of all participants at an event (for instance after a number of separate workshop groups).
Popular planning
Planning from the bottom up. Term used by the Greater London Council in the 1980s.
Post-it note ®
Or simply Post-it. Registered brand name for a sheet of paper with a sticky edge. Come in pads. Great technical aid to collective working as, unlike cards, they can be stuck on vertical surfaces and moved around to create groups.
Poverty trap
Describes a situation where a person or group of people find themselves unable to break out of a cycle of deprivation.
Precautionary principle
Taking action now to avoid possible future environmental damage, when the scientific evidence for acting is inconclusive but the potential damage could be great. This principle has underpinned climate change policies since the Rio Earth Summit in 1992.
Measures taken in anticipation of a disaster aimed at minimising loss of life, disruption and damage if the disaster occurs. Includes formulating contingency plans, developing warning systems, maintenance of relief supplies and an efficient emergency relief distribution system.
Deciding what needs doing when. Ranking of problems to be dealt with or projects to be undertaken. Term usually used to refer to group prioritising processes.
Priority Estates Project
Experimental UK government programme to give council tenants a chance to exercise more control over their homes and neighbourhoods by establishing estate-based management systems. Set up in 1979.
Priority search
Survey technique based on a computerised questionnaire package which analyses responses to structured questions.
Problem tree
Visual way of analysing the inter-relationships among community issues and problems. A process of asking why is used to arrive at consensus about root causes and related effects. A symbolic tree is drawn with the trunk representing problems, the roots representing causes and branches representing the effects.
See example in Community profiling    
Process design
Activity of designing the process.
Process planning session
Event organised to allow people to determine the most appropriate process for their particular purposes.
Process planning session    
Project cycle management (PCM)
Term given to the process of planning and managing projects, programmes and organisations. Widely used in the business sector and increasingly used by development organisations.
Public art
Permanent or temporary physical works of art visible to the general public, whether part of a building or free-standing. For example, sculpture, lighting effects, street furniture, paving, railings and signs.
Public forum
Public meeting with an emphasis on debate and discussion rather than speeches and a question and answer session. Participants will normally sit in a circle or a horseshoe arrangement.
Forum     Public meeting    
Public inquiry
Hearing carried out by the planning inspectorate assessing planning decisions made by the local planning authority. Allows applicants to appeal against the refusal of permission, consent or enforcement proceedings. The inspector produces a decision after hearing evidence. This can be overturned by the Secretary of State or challenged on legal grounds through judicial review.
Public meeting
Advertised, open access event at which issues are presented and commented on and at which decisions may be made. Term normally used to refer to fairly formal events with the audience sitting in rows facing a speaker or panel of speakers with a chairperson who controls the proceedings.
Public forum     Workshop    
Public open space
Urban space, designated by a council, where public access may or may not be formally established, but which fulfils or can fulfil a recreational or non-recreational role (for example, amenity, ecological, educational, social or cultural usages).
Public realm
Those parts of a village, town or city (whether publicly or privately owned) which are available for everyone to use. Includes streets, squares, parks and the space between and surrounding buildings. 
Public right of way
A highway or footpath over which the public have a right of access.
Public wall
Area of wall space or display boards where members of the public can make their views known by putting up drawings or text and making comments on material already there.
Peoples wall    
Raising awareness of a situation through use of posters, leaflets and so on.
Investing in an activity or service to get something started.
Qualitative measurement
Where words are used to describe changes.
Quantitative measurement
Where numbers are used to measure changes.
Questionnaire survey
Survey which involves collection of information in the form of written responses to a standard set of questions. Often a starting point for participation processes. Frequently used with other methods.
Quiet lanes
Designation for minor roads to pay special attention to the needs of walkers, cyclists and horse riders and reduce the problems caused by the volume or speed of traffic.

French term often used even at English speaking events.
Reconnaissance trip
Direct inspection of area under consideration by mixed team of locals and technical experts.
Reconnaissance trip    
The reprocessing of waste, either into the same product or a different one.
Public vote on an issue of special importance. May be used for strategic planning issues (for instance in the Netherlands).
To bring new and more vigorous life to an area or institution; to be reborn; to grow; to improve an area’s social, physical and economic environment.
Regional spatial strategy
Document setting out how much development there should be, how it will be spread around the region and how it will be delivered. Covers a large area.
Regional/urban design assistance team (R/UDAT)
Name originally given to the planning weekend programme started by the American Institute of Architects in 1967. A generic R/UDAT uses the same process to look at problems common to many communities. A mini R/UDAT uses a similar process with a student team.
Design assistance team     Planning weekend    
Registered social landlord (RSL)
Independent, not-for-profit private sector organisations which provide social housing. Most housing associations are RSLs.
Housing association     
Event usually lasting one day where ‘outsiders’ and ‘insiders’ undertake a workshop process to identify solutions to an area’s problems. Process developed by the British Urban Regeneration Agency (BURA) which spells it Re:Invigorate.
Remedial work
Work needed to raise the quality of land to an acceptable level before it is used or developed. For example, removing pollutants from contaminated land.
Renewable energy
Energy flows that occur naturally, for example from the wind, water flow, tides or the sun. It is renewable as it never runs out.
Person who reports to a plenary session on the outcome of a workshop.
Residents choice catalogue
Choice catalogue for residents. 
Choice catalogue    
Residents’ tool loan service
Service lending out tools and equipment to make it easier for residents to carry out building work on their environment.
Residual waste
Waste remaining after materials for re-use, recycling and composting have been removed.
The amount of change a system can undergo and essentially retain the same functions, structure and feedbacks. 
Resource assessment
Identification of resources and capacities within a community.
Resource survey    
Resource centre
Place designed to provide community groups with the facilities they need to make the most of their energies and enthusiasm. No two centres are exactly alike but will provide some or all of the following: information, office equipment, professional advice and support, meeting facilities, equipment for meetings and fund raising, training courses and opportunities for groups to meet and share ideas.
see also
Neighbourhood planning office    
Resource survey
Survey to identify local resources which may be mobilised. Will include people, organisations, finance, equipment and so on.
Neighbourhood skills survey    
Steps to return land to its original or former condition following mineral working by using subsoil, topsoil or soil-making material.
Retail impact assessment
Assessment of potential impact of proposed retail developments on existing retail centres.
Review session
Workshop organised to monitor progress and maintain momentum.
Review session    
Right to buy
Scheme under which most council tenants and some housing association tenants may buy their homes at a lower price than the full market value. Only properties that are particularly suitable for occupation by elderly or disabled people, or are let in connection with the tenants employment, are exempt. People qualify for a discount on the basis of the number of years that they have been social rented housing tenants, subject to a Government-specified maximum amount that varies region by region.
Risk assessment
Examination of risks from disasters existing in any community. The basis for risk reduction. Comprises three components: Hazard analysis; vulnerability analysis; resource assessment.
Risk assessment    
Series of linked public workshops, exhibitions and public forums to explore the potential for improving the built environment and provide a catalyst for action.
Role play
Adopting the role of others and acting out scenarios. Used to help people understand the views and aspirations of others.
Round table workshop
Workshop process for engaging the main stakeholders in generating a vision and strategy for an area. Often used for consensus building between previously antagonistic parties.
Participation Works!    
Rural diversification
The expansion, enlargement or variation of the range of products or fields of operation of a rural business. Includes branching out from traditional farming activities into renewable energy, tourism or food processing.
Rural rapid appraisal (RRA)
Similar approach in rural areas.
Participatory appraisal    
Scheduled ancient monument
Nationally important monuments, usually archaeological remains, that enjoy protection against inappropriate development (through the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Areas Act 1979).
Preliminary exploration of a subject or project.
The process of deciding whether a plan or programme needs a strategic environmental assessment.
Search conference
Conference or workshop for key interested parties organised as a first stage in a consultation process on a project. May include briefings, role play, reconnaissance, interactive displays, workshops and plenary sessions. Term much used in Australia. Similar to planning day or community planning forum.
Community Participation in Practice - A Practical Guide    
Seasonal calendar
Chart showing a communitys work and social activities month by month to highlight problems or concerns about such things as livelihood, health and community relations.
see also Community profiling
Community profiling    
Secondary co-operative
Organisation which provides services, such as technical aid, to a co-operative which is also owned and managed by that co-operative.
Co-operative     Housing co-operative    
Secondary data
Indirect information sources; files, reports, maps, photos, books and so on.
Secondary data review
Collection and analysis of published and unpublished material such as maps, reports, census statistics and newspaper clippings. Normally done prior to field work.
Secretary of state
The most senior Government minister responsible for the work of his or her department. The Government department responsible for planning in England is the Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG).
Section 106 Agreement
A legal agreement (under section 106 of the 1990 Town & Country Planning Act) between a local planning authority and a developer, or undertakings offered unilaterally by a developer, that ensure that certain extra works related to a development are undertaken. Continue alongside the community infrastructure levy.
Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL)    
Self build
Construction (or repair) work physically undertaken directly by future (or present) occupiers on an individual or collective basis.
Self help
Where people take responsibility, individually or collectively, for solving their problems.
Self management
Where a facility is managed by the people who use it.
Self sufficiency
Reduction of dependence on others, making devolution of control easier and encouraging self-reliance.
Semi-structured interview
Conversational open discussion with local inhabitants to understand their needs, problems and aspirations. Uses a checklist of questions as a flexible guide in contrast to a formal questionnaire. Different types include; individual, group, focus group, and key informant.
Meeting or workshop with educational slant.
Sequential approach
A planning principle that seeks to identify, allocate or develop certain types or locations of land before others. For example, brownfield housing sites before greenfield sites, or town centre retail sites before out-of-centre sites.
Making happy discoveries by accident.
Service level agreement (SLA)
Arrangement between people providing a service and those receiving it setting out quantity and frequency of delivery.
Shared ownership housing
When an occupier buys a proportion of a home and rents the remainder, usually from a housing association. Way of making housing affordable.
Shared presentation
Presentation by a group or several individuals.
Shell housing
Construction system where only floors, walls, roofs and services are provided, leaving occupiers free to build their own interiors.
Shop front scheme.
Scheme for improving the street scene by grant aiding improvements to individual shop fronts.
Short-life housing
Use of empty property on a temporary basis, usually by a voluntary organization.
Inefficient departments with little or no planning and co-ordination between related programmes.
Simplified planning zone
An area in which a local planning authority wishes to stimulate development and encourage investment. Specified planning permission is granted in the zone without the need for an application for planning permission and the payment of planning fees.
Acting out an event or activity as a way of gaining information and insights prior to formulating plans.
Single regeneration budget (SRB)
Series of programmes to enhance the employment prospects, education and skills of local people and to tackle the needs of communities in deprived areas.
Site and services
Provision of a serviced site for self-builders. Usually by government, but increasingly also by the private sector.
Site of nature conservation importance (SNCI)
Locally important site of nature conservation adopted by local authorities for planning purposes. Similar to site of biological interest (SBI)
Site of special scientific interest (SSSI)
Site requiring protection from damaging development on account of its flora, fauna, geological and/or physiological features. Identified by English Nature under section 28 of the Wildlife & Countryside Act 1981.
Skills survey
Assessment of skills and talent. Often done in a neighbourhood to establish what the community can do for itself and what extra help is needed. Also known as a skills audit or skills inventory.
Neighbourhood skills survey    
Slide show
Presentation originally based on projecting images from transparencies but now done on a computer. Widely used in workshops before the widespread use of Powerpoint as they could be prepared and presented by participants (more easily than video) and enable people to present visual information to groups (if the projector did not break down!).
Small group discussion
Similar to Small group work
Small group work    
Small group work
People working together in small groups of 8 - 15. Term used to cover a range of similar methods such as workshops and focus groups which enable people to discuss, evaluate, learn and plan together. Group work can be formal or informal, one-off or regular, topic related or wide-ranging.
Small to medium enterprise (SME)
Independent business managed by its owner or part owners and having a small market share either by number of employees or turnover.
Social architecture
Similar concept to community architecture. Term commonly used in the United States.
Community architecture    
Social audit
Tool to help an organisation understand, measure and report upon its social performance through the eyes of its stakeholders. Over time, the approach can be used to help an organisation improve its social performance.
Social capital
Ability of social structures and institutions to provide a supportive framework for individuals; includes firms, trade unions, families, communities, voluntary organisations, legal/political systems, educational institutions, health services, financial institutions and systems of property rights.
Human capital    
Social enterprise
Initiative that uses a commercial approach to fund social or community-based activities.
Social entrepreneur
Person who makes things happen by taking initiative in the interests of his or her community rather than for private or personal gain.
Social exclusion
Exclusion from accepted norms through unemployment, poor skills, low incomes, poor housing, high crime environments, bad health and family breakdown.
Social housing
Housing provided by a landlord, where access is on the basis of housing need, with rents no higher than target rents set by the government for housing association and local authority rents.
Social investment
Normally a loan (not a grant) which makes a positive economic, social or environmental impact, as well as earning income. 
Social survey
Survey to find out about the nature of a community. May cover aspects like age, gender, wealth, health and so on.
Solid biomass
Material from recently living organisms, including plants, animals and their waste. 
Extent to which development plan documents conform to national planning policy, have clear mechanisms for implementation, are founded on a robust and credible evidence base, have taken proper account of the views of the community and have been prepared following proper procedures.
Source protection zone
Area where groundwater (especially public water supply) is protected from developments that may damage its quality. Identified by the Environment Agency. 

Spatial development
Changes in the distribution of activities in space, and the linkages between them, in terms of the use and development of land.
Spatial development strategy (SDS)
Document which provides a vision and strategic guidance on planning matters.
Spatial planning
Activity that goes beyond traditional land use planning to bring together and integrate policies for the development and use of land with other policies and programmes which influence the nature of places and how they function. This will include policies which can impact on land use by influencing the demands on, or needs for, development, but which are not capable of being delivered solely or mainly through the granting or refusal of planning permission and which may be implemented by other means.
Spatial vision
Description of how an area will be changed at the end of a plan period.
Interactive event intensively staffed with facilitators and Recorders where participants drop in and visit a number of issue stalls set up with interpretative material about the community or the planning issues under consideration. Provides an informal environment where a wide range of people have a chance to participate. Encourages casual, ‘drop-in’ participation at people’s convenience. People find issues about which they wish to ‘speak out’ and have their say, with comments clearly recorded by a Recorder (Sarkissian 2009). Similar to Have your say event.
Open house event     SpeakOut     Have your say event    
Special interest group
Group championing a particular cause or interest. May be topic or geographically based. May be formally or informally constituted.
Special needs housing
Housing to meet the needs of people who may be disadvantaged, such as the elderly, the disabled, students, young single people, rough sleepers, the homeless, those needing hostel accommodation, key workers, travellers and occupiers of mobile homes and houseboats.
Special projects group
Non-statutory group formed to undertake a particular project.
User group    
Unlawful occupation of land or housing.
Staffed exhibition
Exhibition where organisers are present to engage in discussion.
Interactive exhibition     Open house event    
Person or organisation with an interest because they will be affected or may have some influence.
Stakeholder analysis
Gaining an understanding about who is affected by any proposal and therefore who should be involved in any participation process. Useful first step in most participation processes.
Stakeholder participation day
One-day event to involve key stakeholders. Often held at the start of a planning process. Sometimes called a consultation day.
Stakeholder participation day    
Statement of case
Document served prior to an inquiry into a planning appeal, detailing full particulars of the case to be put forward, including the technical data on which the party wishes to rely.
Statement of community involvement (SCI)
Document produced by local authorities to highlight how they intend to engage the community in their activity.
Statement of consultation
Report issued by a local planning authority explaining how it has complied with its statement of community involvement during consultation on local development documents.
Required by law (statute), usually through an Act of Parliament.
Statutory body
Government-appointed organisation set up to give advice, and be consulted for comment on, development plans and planning applications affecting matters of public interest. Examples of statutory bodies in England include: English Heritage, Natural England, Environment Agency, Health & Safety Executive and Sport England.
Statutory undertakers
Organisations carrying out functions of a public character under a statutory power. They may be in either public or private ownership. Examples in England include the  Post Office, Civil Aviation Authority, the Environment Agency, any water undertaker, any public gas transporters, supply of electricity etc.
Steering group
Informal group set up to pursue a project or goal.
User group    
Metaphor for control. Handing over the stick is a much used term to mean the experts or facilitator handing over the chalk, pen or microphone to enable local people to become the analysts, planners and facilitators of their own situation.
Sticky wall
Rectangular sheet of parachute silk sprayed with repositional adhesive. Useful for workshops because notes can be moved around and do not require adhesive backing.
Stop notice
Document served by a local planning authority prohibiting the carrying out or continuing of specified operations which are alleged to constitute a breach of planning control. The notice is designed to stop work pending the outcome of an appeal.
Storefront studio
Community design office located in a prominent shop, often temporarily for a community planning event or charrette. Term used in the USA.
Verbal recounting of tales which may be actual or mythical. Used to understand local values, standards, practices and relationships. Particularly valuable with children and people who are illiterate. Also the singing of local songs and reciting of poetry. Performance sets off discussion to explain local knowledge and beliefs.
Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA)
Assessment of the effects of plans and programmes on the environment. Required for certain projects by European Directive 2001/42/EC. 
Environmental impact assessment     Strategic Environmental Assessment Information Service    
Strategic planning
Organised effort to produce decisions and actions that shape and guide what a community is, what it does, and why it does it.
Street party
Party for the whole community held in the street. Often organised to galvanise regeneration initiatives.
Street stall
Way of securing public comment on planning issues by setting up an interactive exhibition in a public street or square.
Street stall    
Street survey
Survey carried out by stopping people in a street or shopping centre. Used for securing views of people using a place (rather than necessarily living or working there).
Study day
Day spent examining a particular issue. Similar to a planning day but less structured. Useful for simple issues.
Planning day    
Sub-regional partnership
A strategic body directing, influencing and co-ordinating a range of economic development and regeneration activities. Often made up of key private, public and other interests.
Maximum local autonomy.
Suggestions box
Box in which people place their written suggestions or comments on a place or proposals. Useful device in consultation allowing participants to remain anonymous if they wish.
Term given to uses of land or buildings, not falling into any of the use classes identified by the use classes order. For example, theatres, launderettes, car showrooms and filling stations.
Super output area (SOA)
Smallest area for which UK government provides deprivation statistics.
Supplementary planning document (SPD)
A local development document that may cover a range of issues, thematic or site specific, and provides further detail of policies and proposals in a  development plan document. For example relating to affordable housing provision, or to give detailed guidance on the development of specific sites in the form of a master plan framework or development brief. 
Supports and infill
Concept of design, management and construction which aims to distinguish between individual and collective areas of responsibility. Developed at the Stichting Architecten Research in the Netherlands.
Similar meaning as Design surgery
Design surgery    
Systematic gathering of information.
Opinion survey     Questionnaire survey     Resource survey     Social survey     Street survey    
Sustainability appraisal
An assessment of the economic, environmental and social effects of a plan  to allow decisions to be made that accord with sustainable development. Sustainability appraisals that fully incorporate the requirements of the European Union (SEA Directive - 2001/42/EC) are required for local development documents.
Sustainable community
Community that lives in harmony with its local environment and does not cause damage to distant environments or other communities ? now or in the future. Quality of life and the interest of future generations are valued above immediate material consumption and economic growth.
Sustainable community strategy (SCS)
Long-term vision for an area created by the local strategic partnership (LSP) to tackle local needs. The local area agreement (LAA) is the mechanism for making the vision a reality; all the outcomes and targets of the LAA are designed to deliver the vision set out in the SCS. The SCS is the plan of plans in an area. It sits above all the other plans and should be based on evidence and consultation. The SCS should also set out the key tasks that the LSP partners need to achieve to improve the well being of the area. The SCS is not subject to any external validation but is subject to a sustainability appraisal. The local development framework, particularly the core strategy, needs to demonstrate how it is delivering the SCS.
Local strategic partnership (LSP)     Local area agreement (LAA)    
Sustainable development
Development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs (Brundtland Report definition).
Sustainable travel
Travel creating minimal damage to the environment. Mostly assumed to mean walking, cycling, use of public transport and car sharing. 
Sweat equity
Where an individual or community acquires an asset by expending labour rather than money.
SWOT analysis
Determination of the Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats relating to an organisation or activity.
Table group
Group of six to ten people at a workshop who work under the guidance of a Facilitator and are assisted by a Recorder. They usually work through a structured agenda and report back to all participants at plenary sessions. (Sarkissian 2009)
Table scheme display
Simple way of securing comment on design proposals by taping drawings on a table top and requesting people to vote with sticky dots.
Table scheme display    
Talent survey
Similar meaning as skills survey
Skills survey    
Task Force
Multidisciplinary team of students and professionals who produce in-depth proposals for a site or neighbourhood based on an intensive programme of site studies, lectures, participatory exercises and studio working, normally lasting several weeks.
Task Force    
Learning to work together as a group by getting to know each other and developing shared aims, values and working practices.
Technology of participation
A framework of practical methods that help facilitators working with groups. Term used by the Institute of Cultural Affairs. Includes Discussion method, Workshop method and Action Planning method.
Institute of Cultural Affairs.    
Temporal snapshot
Finding out how spaces are used at different times of day and night.
Tenant management organisation (TMO)
Organisation set up to allow housing tenants to participate in the management of their homes.
Think tank
Brainstorming group. Increasingly used by governments and city authorities. Often for experts only. May use a community planning event format. Sometimes called an expert panel or symposium.
Third wave
Revolution currently transforming society based on growth of high technology and information systems. The first wave was the agricultural revolution, the second the industrial revolution.
Time money
Alternative currency which credits the time people spend helping each other. Participants earn credit for doing jobs - an hour of your time entitles you to an hour of someone else's time. Credits are deposited centrally in a time bank and withdrawn when the participant needs help themselves.
New Economics Foundation    
Time use analysis
Assessment of time spent on various activities, on a daily or seasonal basis.
Line calibrated to show a historical sequence of events or activities.
Diagrams     Historical profiling    
Top down
Term used to refer to initiatives led by the authorities as opposed to bottom up initiatives led by the community.
Topic workshop
Workshop session on a particular topic.
Town and Country Planning Act 1990
The chief piece of primary planning legislation in England. Much of it has been amended by the Planning & Compulsory Purchase Act 2004 and most recently by the Localism Act 2011. But the 1990 Act remains the key legal reference point for planning.
Town centre manager
Person employed to improve town centres by working with all interested parties and taking initiatives.
Town development trust
Organisation created by a local urban community to revitalise that community's physical surroundings.
Development trust    
Town team
Group of people who work within their community to identify and shape projects designed to improve it. Term used in Yorkshire, UK.
Upper Calder Valley Renaissance    
Town workshop
Workshop organised on the future of a town.
Carefully planned walk through an area designed to help people understand the problems and opportunities. Designed to be walked unaccompanied.
Reconnaissance trip    
Transect walk
Systematic walk along a pre-determined route through an area to gather information about such things as land-use, social and economic resources or the state of the environment. Usually done by community members with facilitators or technical experts. Information is subsequently recorded on maps and as text.
Reconnaissance trip    
Transition towns initiative
Project or initiative aimed at making the transition necessary for communities to be able to reduce climate change by reducing carbon emissions and counter the effects of the end of cheap oil.
Transition towns wiki    
Transport impact assessment
A requirement for major planing applications to outline: what additional transport impacts the proposals will generate; how they will integrate into existing transport patterns; how they meet sustainable development requirements. 
Travel plan
Plan outlining how people will move around for regular activities such as getting to work or school. May be prepared on a voluntary basis or as part of a planning agreement. Seen as an important tool for promoting sustainable travel (e.g. walking, cycling) and encouraging effective use of current public transport networks and their enhancement.
Treasure hunt
Trail designed with the added incentive of prizes for the correct answers to questions about things seen on route. Useful warm up to a community planning event, generating interest and getting people to look closely at the physical nature of an area.
Tree preservation order (TPO)
Designation of a tree in a conservation area that contributes significantly to amenity. A TPO designation requires that the council is consulted before any tree maintenance is carried out.
Triple bottom line
Business activity that results in commercial profit as well as social and environmental benefits.
Trunk road
Strategic highway which links cities, towns, ports and airports. Most motorways and some A roads are trunk roads. The secretary of state for transport is the highway authority responsible for maintaining and operating the trunk road network.
Term used in the name of an organisation, usually implying that it has charitable objectives. Also used to mean 'have confidence in'.
Twin tracking
The submission of two identical (or overlapping) planning applications on the same site at the same time, with the intention of appealing (against refusal) on one of them in order to pressurise for a consent on the other. A local planning authority can decline to determine overlapping applications, for example when an appeal on the same or very similar proposal has recently been turned down.
Unauthorised development
Development that has taken place, or is taking place, without planning permission. It may risk being the subject of enforcement action.
Unitary authority
Single-tier local authority, combining the functions of county and district council.
Unstable land
Land liable to subsidence for which planning proposals should take account. 
Urban aid
Government funding intended for community development in urban areas.
Urban capacity study
Investigation to establish how much additional housing can be accommodated within an urban area.
Urban community assistance team
Similar meaning to Design assistance team
Design assistance team    
Urban design
Discipline concerned with three-dimensional built form and the ecology of streets, neighbourhoods and cities.
Urban design action team
Similar meaning as urban design assistance team. Term adopted by the Urban Design Group for its first UK community planning event in 1990 and used again since. (Note the American ‘Assistance’ has changed to ‘Action’.
Design assistance team    
Urban design assistance team
Similar meaning to Design assistance team
Design assistance team    
Urban design game
Role-play game designed to help people to understand the planning process and the views of others by simulating future scenarios.
Urban design studio
Unit attached to an architecture or planning school which focuses on involving local communities in live project work.
Urban design studio    
Urban design workshop
Similar meaning to Design workshop
Design workshop    
Urban extension
The planned expansion of a city or town. Can contribute to creating more sustainable patterns of development when located in the right place, with well-planned infrastructure including access to a range of facilities, and when developed at appropriate densities.
Urban farm
Similar meaning to City farm
City Farm    
Urban fringe
Transitional place between urban area and countryside. Can provide a valuable location for sport and recreation, particularly in situations where there is a lack of land within urban areas.
Urban laboratory
Similar meaning to Urban design studio
Urban design studio    
Urban regeneration
Regeneration in an urban area.
Urban regeneration company (URC)
Not-for-profit company which engages businesses in regeneration strategies to develop less prosperous areas.
Urban renaissance
Vision for widespread urban regeneration based on design excellence, community involvement and social well-being, with a viable economic framework.
Urban resource centre
Local or regional centre aiming to co-ordinate training in cross-professional skills and disseminate best practice and innovation in regeneration and community planning.
Urban sprawl
Uncontrolled or unplanned extension of urban areas into the countryside.
Urban studies centre
Centre of environmental education, usually focusing on the immediate surroundings.
Architecture centre     Environmental education    
Urban village
Term used to describe an urban area with an attractive mix of homes, shops, restaurants and employers.
Use classes order
Categorisation of land uses. As defined in The Town and Country Planning (Use Classes) Order 1987. Planning permission is not needed for changes of use within the same use class.
Actual or future occupier of a building or neighbourhood or beneficiary of a service.
User client    
User client
People who are the end-users of buildings and are treated as the client, even if they are not technically responsible for paying the bills.
User group
Group of actual or future occupiers of a building or neighbourhood or beneficiary of a service.
User group    
Venn diagram
Diagram using circles of different sizes to indicate roles of different organisations and the relationships between them. Used for analysing institutional and social networks.
The way in which ordinary buildings were built in a particular place, making use of local styles, techniques and materials.
Vernacular architecture
Architecture of and by the people and rooted in a particular locality.
Vernacular building
A building built without being designed by an architect or engineer or someone with similar formal training, often based on traditional or regional forms.
Video box
Use of video to help people express and communicate ideas and opinions. Used for presentation or as a discussion tool. Particularly useful for young people.
Video soapbox    
Video project
Where citizens film their neighbourhood and interview each other as part of a community planning initiative.
Video soapbox
Use of large screens in public locations to project people expressing ideas and opinions.
Video soapbox     Video box    
Village appraisal
Similar meaning to Community appraisal.
Community appraisal    
Village appraisals and audits
Surveys done by and for local people
Village design day
Day when people work intensively on developing ideas
for their village.
Planning day    
Village design statement
Local design statement produced by a village community.
Local design statement    
Village envelope
Boundary around a village, or part of a village, within which development might be allowed in principle.
An image of how things might be in the future. May be in words or pictures. Provides useful guide for developing project and programme priorities. ‘Having vision’ implies being imaginative.
Vision fair
Event where people vote on their favourite visions. Vision
statements or images, usually from a previous workshop or brainstorm, are exhibited. People use sticky dots or other means to indicate which visions they would like to pursue. They may also make personal pledges to take action.
Choices method     Vision    
Thinking about what the future could be and creating a vision.
Community visioning     Vision    
Visioning conference
Similar meaning to Future search conference
Future search conference.    
Trip by a group of people planning an initiative to a community that has recently undertaken a similar initiative, to learn from their experience. May be highly structured with formal notetaking, interviews and feedback sessions, or informal.
Visual minutes
Recording a meeting, conference or workshop visually with cartoon illustrations rather than by producing traditional minutes using text.
Visual minutes    
Visual simulation
Showing how buildings will look when constructed using photomontages.
Voluntary organisation
Not-for-profit, non-statutory and often charitable organisation.
Voluntary sector
Non-statutory organisations funded by grants, donations and sponsorship that provide goods and services to groups of people.
Extent to which a community, structure or service is likely to be damaged or disrupted by a disaster.
Vulnerability analysis
Identification of what and who is vulnerable to disaster and the extent of that vulnerability.
Vulnerability and capacity analysis
Method based on a matrix chart for organising information about a
community’s vulnerability to, and capacity to withstand, the effects of extreme events such as natural disasters.
Direct inspection of area under consideration on foot
Reconnaissance trip    
Small sub-area of a local authority district.
Waste collection authority (WCA)
Organisation with a duty to collect household waste. It also has a duty to collect commercial waste if requested to do so and may also collect industrial waste. May differ from the waste disposal authority (WDA).
Waste disposal authority (WDA)    
Waste disposal authority (WDA)
Organisation responsible for managing waste collected by the waste collection authority and providing household waste recovery centres.
Waste collection authority (WCA)    
Waste hierarchy
Framework for securing a sustainable approach to waste management. Waste should be minimised wherever possible. If waste cannot be avoided, then it should be re-used; after this, value should be recovered by recycling or composting or using waste to generate energy; and finally landfill disposal.
Waste minimisation
Avoiding the production of waste in the first place.
Waste planning authority
Organisation responsible for the disposal and reuse of waste (in a county council or metropolitan district).
Wealth ranking
Similar meaning to Well-being ranking
Well-being ranking    
Web site
Space on the Internet. Immense potential for providing sites with
information, discussion groups and interactive material on community planning projects.
Well-being ranking
Assessment of well-being of different households, usually
using pile-sorting technique. Also known as wealth ranking.
Community profiling    
Wheel of fortune
Graphic way for people to collectively prioritise up to 20 competing priorities.
Example in Prioritising     
White land
Land (and buildings) without any specific proposal for allocation in a development plan, where it is intended that for the most part, existing uses shall remain undisturbed and unaltered.
Wildlife corridor
Strip of land (for example, along a hedgerow) conserved and managed for wildlife, usually linking more extensive wildlife habitats.
Wind farm
Group of turbines generating electricity from wind. May vary in terms of the number and size of turbines.
Windfall site
Plot of land not specifically allocated for development in a development plan, but which unexpectedly becomes available for development during the lifetime of a plan. Most windfalls are referred to in a housing context. They tend to be very small sites for one or a small number of homes.
Wish poem
Poem made up by combining wishes of participants at a workshop.
Working community
Similar meaning to Managed workspace
Managed workspace    
Working group
Small number of individuals with a specific task to complete.
Working party
Similar meaning to Working group
Working group    
Meeting at which a small group, perhaps aided by a facilitator, explores issues, develops ideas and makes decisions. A less formal and more creative counterpart to a
public meeting or committee. A topic workshop focuses on
specific issues. A design workshop includes the use of participatory design techniques.
Briefing workshop     Design workshop     Public meeting     Seminar     Topic workshop    
World café
A non-confrontational and creative structured process to help large numbers of people engage in interactive conversations and build mutual understanding and collective learning about important issues by working in small groups.
World heritage site
Cultural or natural site of outstanding universal value. Designated by the International Council on Monuments and Sites (ICOMOS). For example Stonehenge.
Youth forum
Way for young people to meet to discuss issues that concern them in whatever way best suits them.
Youth Inclusion programme (YIP)
Programme to reduce youth crime in specific neighbourhoods. Operates in 70 of the most deprived estates in England and Wales where it targets 13 to 16 year-olds engaged in crime or most at risk of offending, truancy or social exclusion.
Youth planning day
Day of activities designed specifically to involve young people in the planning process.
Planning day    
Zero-carbon home
Energy-efficient dwelling where the net carbon emissions from all energy uses over a year are zero. This includes energy use from cooking, washing and electronic entertainment appliances as well as space heating, cooling, ventilation, lighting and hot water.