Old and new schools of planning

Recently I have been very much struck, and not in a good way, with the debate that rages on about old and new schools of planning. I get very displeased when we all feel it necessary to draw such meaningless distinctions. Imagine my surprise then when I found a recent post by a “digital” planner on the merits of some of the wise words uttered by Jon Steel. Perhaps finally old school has become new school.


In a nutshell: don’t be clever be useful – that sort of genuine wisdom has always been universal – I just don’t think us human beings learn it at any so-called planning school…….. !

Roger Waters Live

Not so long back Dad and I ventured out to the O2 Arena for a night that shall be long remembered. The Wall Live was much more than a  performance of an album – it felt like we were stepping into a world where someone had been brave enough to question the moral underpinings of some of the biggest political decisions that we’ve all witnessed over the last decades. We felt, albeit for one night only, that we had witnessed and been part of a revolution.

It also seemed that the words that underpinned this revolution were as relevant today as they were when first written and ironically will be as relevant one hundred years from now if we keep building the same walls.  It made me wonder whether the technologies of communication in our culture today will at some point become the vehicles that serve to enlighten us?  In today’s world can we really afford not to face up to some inconvenient truths or will we inevitably be happy to suffer the inconvenient consequences?

Roger Waters quote from 22 years ago:
What it comes down to for me is this:  Will the technologies of communication in our culture, serve to enlighten us and help us to understand one another better, or will they deceive us and keep us apart?

I believe this is still a supremely relevant question and the jury is out. There is a lot of commercial clutter on the net, and a lot of propaganda, but I have a sense that just beneath the surface understanding is gaining ground.  We just have to keep blogging, keep twittering, keep communicating, keep sharing ideas.
Roger Waters


o2 London 18th May 2011