CP0244 - Governing People and Places

SchoolCardiff School of Planning and Geography
Department CodeCPLAN0
Module CodeCP0244
External Subject CodeK490
Number of Credits20
Language of DeliveryEnglish
Module Leader Dr Gareth Enticott
SemesterSpring Semester
Academic Year2015/6

Outline Description of Module

How is evidence used in the governance of people and places? What counts as evidence? And why are some forms used more than others? These questions are the basis to this module which introduces students to the concept of evidence based policy and how it applies to urban and rural planning. The module examines the nature of policy making, the role of evidence, and how changes to local and national government institutions have resulted in different styles of policy making. The theories and issues covered in the lectures are brought together in a field study visit to Copenhagen, Denmark where students will learn to critically examine and use different forms of evidence to evaluate the notion of the liveable city.

On completion of the module a student should be able to

  1. Recognize the different ways evidence is used to govern and plan places in the UK and Europe
  2. Understand the socio-political dimensions to the process of evaluating planning
  3. Critically evaluate the limitations to different methods of governing places
  4. Research and evaluate the effectiveness of methods of governing place
  5. Understand differing political perspectives on the public policy process and its outcomes, and the views of different interest groups

How the module will be delivered

Lectures, workshops and a field study visit to Copehagen (Denmark).

Skills that will be practised and developed


  1. Critical assessment of concepts and theories relating to the governance of place
  2. Designing frameworks to evaluate the effectiveness of local governance
  3. Evaluating methods of researching planning effectiveness
  4. Relating and applying ideas of government to planning and from one place to another
  5. Preparing and presenting arguments and information in a variety of forms, e.g: written and oral.
  6. Using IT in work preparation and presentation
  7. Engage in small groups discussions

How the module will be assessed

Type of assessment





(if applicable)

Approx. date of Assessment



Briefing on Forms of Evidence

1000 words

March 10th 2015



Report on FSV.

2500 words

May 1st 2015


The potential for reassessment in this module


Students are permitted to be reassessed in a module which they have failed, in line with the course regulations. The reassessment will usually take place during the summer.





Assessment Breakdown

Type % Title Duration(hrs) Period Week
Written Assessment 25
N/A 1 N/A
Report 75
Report On Planning In A European Destination
N/A 1 N/A

Syllabus content

Topics covered in the lectures include:


  1. Concepts and models of evidence based policy
  2. Evaluation metrics for urban and rural policy
  3. Scientific forms of evaluation
  4. Inspection and qualitative evidence
  5. Institutional and individual barriers to rational behaviour
  6. The liveable city
  7. Evaluating the liveable city


Field study visit to Copenhagen


Essential Reading and Resource List

Indicative Reading and Resource List:



Ashworth, R., G. Boyne, et al., Eds. (2010). Public Service Improvement: Theories and Evidence. Oxford, Oxford University Press.

Houghton, M. (1997). "Performance indicators in town planning: much ado about nothing?" Local Government Studies 23(2): 1-13.

Nutley, S., I. Walter, et al. (2007). Using Evidence. How research can inform public services. Bristol, Policy Press.

Young, K., et al. (2002). "Social Science and the Evidence-based Policy Movement." Social Policy and Society 1(03): 215-224.

© Cardiff University