University of Oulu

Ympäristön suunnittelu - ongelmallinen kokonaisuus : arvio kuntien ympäristön suunnittelun tilasta ja kehityksestä

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Author: Kinnunen, Ismo1
Organizations: 1University of Oulu, Faculty of Science, Department of Geography
Format: ebook
Version: published version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 2.6 MB)
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Language: Finnish
Published: 2001
Publish Date: 2001-06-10
Thesis type: Doctoral Dissertation
Defence Note: Esitetään Oulun yliopiston luonnontieteellisen tiedekunnan suostumuksella julkisesti tarkastettavaksi Linnanmaan Kuusamonsalissa (YB 210) 1. syyskuuta 2001 klo 12.00.
Reviewer: Professor Markku Sotarauta
Professor Markku Tykkyläinen


In its present meaning, the Finnish word 'ymp?rist?', that denotes the environment, already emerged in the 19th century. Yet it is only now that its true meaning is understood more broadly than just referring to matters and objects that surround a given place. The most essential feature of the change that has occurred in its nuances of meaning is the fact that the questions and problems related to environmental themes have emerged as permanent targets of social planning within the scope of which they should also be solved.

The 20th century, known as an era of progress and development, was unable to settle these questions but rather went on to generate environmentally bound social problems which have proved even more difficult to grasp. The reasons for this are deeply embedded in reductionism and its reality-braking approach. The present investigation employs a strongly holistic viewpoint in underlining the above problem clusters against the traditional nature of scientific development and the perspectives of individual disciplines, particularly as the problems and questions connected with the whole formed by the environment and society are not separate or definable by one instance only.

Problem-solving in environmental planning, which overlaps with social and community-based problems, is essentially determined by the organisation of the various planning tasks into open problems. Being multi-dimensional, controversial, difficult to shape and including a variety of alternative solutions, situations of this kind require planning that outlines future opportunities and takes into consideration the interactive nature of different factors. Thus planning must no longer be used as a means of determining or bordering the future in the sense characteristic of its traditional nature but rather as a creative, visionary and strategic instrument of constantly looking for the things of tomorrow. With regard to theoretical planning, the environment-society relationship in fact requires more problem-based approaches, local solution patterns and a more fundamental grip on things.

In the level of individual local government districts assessed in the present paper, the scope and multi-dimensional nature of the environment, when seen in the framework of planning a sustainable future in societies, has given rise to definition problems as well as concrete implementation difficulties. Despite these, there has already been some awakening to assume the direction required by a holistic grip on the environment. Yet the majority of the local government authorities in Finland still have a long way to go to realise the kind of long-term fundamental perspectives and interaction between the various factors that lie in their operating environments that are required for really employing a strategy. It takes time of course to change traditional operating patterns and cultures. The most important thing here is that the instances concerned should recognise the direction of development as their own and correct so as to ensure that the process of change will continue.

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Series: Acta Universitatis Ouluensis. A, Scientiae rerum naturalium
ISSN-E: 1796-220X
ISBN: 951-42-6415-0
ISBN Print: 951-42-6414-2
Issue: 368
Copyright information: © University of Oulu, 2001. This publication is copyrighted. You may download, display and print it for your own personal use. Commercial use is prohibited.