Adaptive Land Management - designing a preventive management system for resilient urban development

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The urban system is a permanent complex construction, with the aim of conditioning society, its culture and activities more susceptible to various influences and constraints. Induced dynamics occur within its development, determined both by prior planning, and by unforeseen and adverse externalities to thought out plans, leading to instabilities or even processes with a negative tendency. This was the case with the recent economic and financial crisis which resulted in a context of stagnation or even recession for urban development in the consolidated city and the urban space in expansion or consolidation. The findings here are reflected in the following statement of amazement: could it be that nobody foresaw this, and why? It is my belief that it indeed matters that policy in general and spatial planning as governance of cities acquires the
capacity to foresee, as far as possible, the distant consequences of its own decisions and the effects of externalities on urban development, that is, that for a sustainable and resilient urban development, this can be carried out using a permanently adapted strategy for a preventive and not merely positivist prospective.
However, the city, from the territorial point of view, consists of an urban system with a complex multifunctionality and structure. Therefore, in order to achieve the aforementioned governance of sustainable and resilient cities, this should be supported by a management system capable of efficiently managing that complexity. However, either due to the inefficiency of its
practices or due to the ineffectiveness of its results, it can be seen that territorial management has shown itself unable to anticipate and monitor the mutability of urban systems (forms and functions) induced by actual transformation dynamics. The positivist planning that has lasted has failed, since it is based on policies and instruments managed segmentally and sectorally, where the definition of strategies does not correspond to a prior systematic assessment, as well as the definition of strategies not corresponding to actions undertaken, showing, through the disconnected state of the environment and the functioning urban systems, that it is urgent to have a management system supported by planning based on a prior systematic assessment of the contexts which are the object of management action.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationInnovation for Resilience
Place of PublicationFaro
PublisherUniversidade do Algarve
Number of pages27
ISBN (Electronic)978-989-8472-90-8
ISBN (Print)978-989-8472-86-1
Publication statusPublished - 2016


  • Strategic management
  • Prospective
  • Ex-ante assessment
  • Sustainable urban planning
  • Resilient cities


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