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Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments

Engaging the future successfully will require the active participation of planners, community leaders, and many individuals, as well as the contributions of students and scholars of planning. To shape any number of possible futures, we must imagine them in advance and understand how they might emerge. Forecasts, scenarios, plans, and projects are four ways of representing, manipulating, and assessing ideas about the future. The chapters in this richly illustrated volume offer a variety of tools and examples to help planners advocate for a new kind of planning—one that allows communities to face uncertain and malleable futures with continuous and deliberative planning activities.


Planners and others seeking insight into this conundrum would do well to start with LewHopkins and Maria Zapata’s book. As readers of it will attest, the title is chosen carefully. It describes some of the ways the future can be contemplated, talked about, and addressed in a dynamic way and over time. Fundamentally, it’s about engaging each other as the most productive path to engaging the future. –JOURNAL OF REGIONAL SCIENCE


This heavily illustrated best seller provides students and experienced planners with tools and examples to help communities prepare for uncertain futures. It explains how to utilize forecasts, scenarios, plans, and projects to represent, manipulate, and assess ideas to make more informed decisions and create a better future.

About the Author

Lewis D. Hopkins is a professor and former head of the Department of Urban and Regional Planning at the University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign. He has served as editor of the Journal of Planning Education and Research and chair of the Planning Accreditation Board, and was a Fulbright Senior Scholar in Nepal. He currently is a member of the Urbana Planning Commission. His B.A. in architecture, Master of Regional Planning, and Ph.D. in city planning are from the University of Pennsylvania.

Marisa A. Zapata is in the Ph.D. program in urban and regional planning at the University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign, where she completed her Master of Urban Planning in 2004. She formerly worked for Congressman Charles B. Rangel in Washington, DC, and completed her B.A. in anthropology at Rice University.

Table of Contents

1. Engaging the Future: Tools for Effective Planning Practices, Lewis D. Hopkins and Marisa A. Zapata

2. The Use of Forecasts in Creating and Adopting Visions for Regional Growth, Terry Moore

3. Vision, Planning, and Democracy, Jill Grant

4. Promoting the Community Future in the Contest with Present Individualism, Dowell Myers

5. Using a Scenario Approach: From Business to Regional Futures, Erik Smith

6. Using Scenarios to Make Urban Plans, Uri Avin

7. Using Scenarios to Build Planning Capacity, Stacy A. Harwood

8. How We Use Planning: Planning Cultures and Images of Futures, Michael Neuman

9. Forecasting to Learn How the World Can Work, Andrew M. Isserman

10. Deliberating About the Future, Richard E. Klosterman

11. Developing and Using Scenarios, Brian Deal and Varkki George Pallathucheril

12. Engaging the Public through Narrative-Based Scenarios, Richard Cummings

13. Person-Oriented Narratives: Extensions on Scenario Planning for Multicultural and Multivocal Communities, Marisa A. Zapata

14. Using Plans and Plan Making Processes: Deliberation and Representations of Plans, Lewis D. Hopkins

15. Engaging the Future More Effectively: A Model Request for Proposals, Lewis D. Hopkins and Marisa A. Zapata

Product Details

Publication date:
Lincoln Institute of Land Policy
Copyright Year:
UPC Code:
Lewis D Hopkins
Marisa A. Zapata
Lewis D. Hopkins
Marisa Zapata


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