A Storytelling Planning Process to Transform Environmental Values into Sustainable Cities and Sustainable Behaviours

Document Type : Original Article


Department of Environmental Planning, Management and Education, School of Environment, College of Engineering, University of Tehran, Tehran Iran


The concept of sustainability inspired most urban development plans after Rio 1992, although many such plans have not been too successful. An important reason for this is the disjuncture of science from culture and traditional knowledge and planners’ inability to conceptualize the environmental values of societies.This research aims to explore storytelling’s ability to aid in identifying of environmental values of communities and the ways they are developed through their traditional knowledge. Furthermore, it integrates the subjective and normative nature of storytelling with the objective and rational procedure of the planning process. To achieve this aim, the cultural pathways of storytelling for practice on cities within a narrative context are investigated, along with critical naturalistic discourse analysis, which corresponds with the primary levels of a profound planning process. An analysis of the conceptual commonalities and contrasts found in these approaches suggests that the intrinsic social features of storytelling can fill the normative gaps in the rational planning procedure to create a storytelling planning process. This approach is suggested as a general framework to forge a common language among people and planners’ interventions into local environments based on community environmental values, especially in traditional cities.


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