Social theory and the region: from the Regional Planning Association of America to the restructuring of sociospatial theory, with policy implications


In this paper an argument is developed in support of the relevance of social theory for the region. Characterized by bridging across conceptual and methodological divides, by the increasing prominence of the role of space, context, and human agency, social theory exhibits an affinity with the regional development theory of the Regional Planning Association of America (RPAA) in the 1920s. This paper provides a brief account of the RPAA's approach to regional synthesis. The author aims to build upon insights offered by social theories in dealing with multifaceted regional development phenomena, identifying areas of overlap with the approach of the RPAA. The paper is concluded with a brief discussion of regional policy implications and the practice of social theory. -Author

Publication Title

Environment & Planning C: Government & Policy