In September 2012, TAYplan Strategic Development Plan Authority and five public sector partners commissioned a team from the universities of Dundee, Abertay and St Andrews to review current research on the societal, economic and climatic changes that may impact on the region in the medium term, together with the resulting implications for land use, and from this analysis to identify key questions which require additional research in order to inform the preparation of the next TAYplan strategic development plan. The study was led by Barbara Illsley from Town and Regional Planning.
The Phase 1 Report, published in January 2013, identified eight broad challenges which are likely to influence the form and function of the TAYplan region over the next twenty to forty years together with a number of more specific issues that could be the focus of further study. These are:
- Managing resource use efficiently
- Moving to low carbon, efficient energy supplies
- Changing economy
- Increasing use of ICT and impact on delivery and use of public services
- Increasing significance of place
- Changing demographics and health
- Infrastructure and transport
- Responding to climate change.
Phase 2 of the project included an interactive participatory workshop to allow TAYplan stakeholders to determine their future research priorities. Participants at the workshop agreed three research priorities and these have been shaped in the form of research proposals:
Application of Ecosystems Approach: The aim of the research will be to assess the utility of the ecosystem approach as an operational and analytical framework for strategic land use planning within the TAYplan Region.
Making Resilient Places: The aim of the research will be to understand the characteristics of resilient places, urban and rural, and to explore the possibilities for resilient places in the TAYplan region.
Energy Futures and Impacts: The aim of the research will be to examine current and future trends in energy supply and demand in the TAYplan area and to explore the impact on long term planning for the region.
This project is a good example of partnership working at a city regional scale where the outcomes feed into the creation of future public policy. The findings were presented to the Scottish Cities Knowledge Centre Second Annual Conference in Edinburgh in April 2013.