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The planning monitor: an accountability theory of plan evaluation


  • H W Calkins


This paper presents the concepts of a planning monitor as a basisfor evaluating the effectiveness of plans and the planning process. The concepts of the planning monitor present a structure for preparing an urban or regional plan. There are two separate components of the planning monitor: (1) a set of rational planning procedures; and (2) a supporting information system. The paper argues that planning, in its present form, does not use information effectively. It is not that information is ignored but rather that planning has adapted to an environment where there is a lack of adequate information and has therefore developed procedures which allow it to function without information. It is even conceivable that these procedures may have evolved to the point where they not only do not require information but in fact cannot utilize the information even if it is provided. The discussion encompasses plan preparation and the information systems necessary to make a planning monitor work. A planning monitor would provide information that is needed for modification of a plan and for the evaluation of planning as an effective means of controlling development. When fully operational a planning monitor would introduce accountability into the planning process through the evaluation of plan implementation actions. This evaluation is based on a structure for relating goals and objectives to specific program and policy actions. Finally a planning process is proposed which encompasses monitoring and plan evaluation.

Suggested Citation

  • H W Calkins, 1979. "The planning monitor: an accountability theory of plan evaluation," Environment and Planning A, Pion Ltd, London, vol. 11(7), pages 745-758, July.
  • Handle: RePEc:pio:envira:v:11:y:1979:i:7:p:745-758

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