The conditioning of the municipal planning team for administrative decentralization, in anticipation of local area planning of the city of Vancouver

Oliver Ross Perry
This thesis evaluates the preparedness of the professional staff in the municipal planning team for programs of administrative decentralization. Administrative decentralization is defined as the delegation of policymaking and programming authority from the central administration down to subunits or field offices. Its use in professional planning today is local area planning. The impetus behind this thesis is the problem presented by what is called the paradox of desenixsalization. That is, two
more » ... ontradictory motions, the irresistable force and the immovable object, are observed in modern local public administration. On the one hand, the citizen participation movement is refocussing its energies on the civic bureaucracy, demanding that it decentralize its decision-making authority. On the other hand, these civic bureaucracies are, on all accounts, resistant to such reform and incapable of handling these new demands. This paradox suggests that a reconditioning and reorientation of staff competence in the planning organization is required. The thesis is structured in tw© parts: first, the construction of an ideal set of new competencies required of the planner for decentralization; second, the application of this ideal set to a local planning organization. The first dtep is accomplished from a study of past experience in decentralizing planning services, current social planning theory, and administration-organization theory. Prom this analysis, eighteen qualities for the professional planner are concluded and organized into attitudes and values, knowledge, and skills and techniques. The second part of the thesis consists of the application of the ideal set. - A questionnaire containing the model's qualities is developed and applied to the professional staff of the City of Vancouver Planning Department. The form tests for the acceptability and availability of the new competencies as they relate to seven key personnel characteristics of planning organizations. These characteristics are: organizational position, s [...]
doi:10.14288/1.0093129 fatcat:mlmorbgb2bblbbkk2asbqp6r4u