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Title: A collaborative partnership approach to integrated waterside revitalisation : the experience of the Mersey Basin Campaign, North west England
Author: Kim, Joon Sik.
ISNI:       0000 0001 3599 3581
Awarding Body: University of Liverpool
Current Institution: University of Liverpool
Date of Award: 2002
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The central aim of this thesis is to investigate how a collaborative partnership approach as presented in contemporary planning theories can be applied to, and improve, a process of integrated waterside revitalisation. The emergence of a new model of governance, bringing together governmental and non-governmental forces to achieve the policy goal, calls for a novel form of partnership driven by interdependence and networking between a range of actors. Although this approach is often described as 'collaborative planning', there is widespread acknowledgement that the 'new' practice has operational difficulties. Collaborative planning has raised issues about how common values can be forged and applied in a real-life context, especially in the face of political inequality. This thesis draws on the results of a research project investigating a concrete example of collaborative partnerships, the Mersey Basin Campaign in the North West of England. The Campaign is a government-sponsored 25-year initiative that aims to improve water quality and the waterside environments of the Mersey Basin, a heavily urbanised area containing the two conurbations of Merseyside and Greater Manchester. In carrying out the study, six detailed case studies within the Campaign's activities have been investigated; about 40 semi-structured interviews have been undertaken, and over 25 meetings and field works have been observed. The study investigated the establishment and operation of a particular collaborative partnership according to a four-stage life cycle of partnerships. By exploring the six cases of collaborative practice through the views of practitioners, the research has shown how collaborative efforts can be made in a real-life context. The results showed that waterside sustainability issues were essential to tackling a river basin ecosystem management by creating a win-win strategy for wider stakeholders. The sustainability issue however, was not a top priority for all key stakeholders in deciding whether or not to put their money, time and efforts into the partnership. The research showed that funding availability is the best way to attract reluctant stakeholders, although partner organisations seemed not to be interested in implementing the tasks of the partnership once the initial excitement of funding availability had died away. There is, therefore, the partnerships need to develop an understanding of the collaborative approach among stakeholders and to change their attitudes towards a collaborative form of planning practice. Collaborative partnerships need different implementation processes to tackle different problems in the face of the complexity of waterside agendas; some planning processes require continuity of leadership, whilst others need bottom-up approaches. In this context, the study identified three key aspects of integrated waterside revitalisation; consensus building, facilitation, and open participation. It also developed a mechanism of collaborative partnership service delivery in coordinating a top-down approach and a bottom-up approach. The study has shown that the role of representatives linking their parent organisations to the partnership is fundamental for effective service delivery. It has been seen that once the representatives have shared ownership of the partnership, they act as a catalyst to stimulate and motivate action from their parent organisations.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Urban planning & rural planning