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European Integration and Spatial Rescaling in the Baltic Region Soft Spaces, Soft Planning and Soft Security



European Integration and Spatial Rescaling in the Baltic Region Soft Spaces, Soft Planning and Soft Security



European Planning Studies 22(4): 680-693



Spatial rescaling arguably represents one of the most significant recent changes in planning. Rescaling processes do not merely imply changes in powers across existing layers of decision-making, but also entail new scales of intervention, new actor constellations and new geometries of governance. A wide range of examples of spatial rescaling can be seen across Europe, varying from local through to regional and international. The emergence of soft spaces regions in which strategy is made between or alongside formal institutions and processes is one of the phenomena associated with contemporary spatial rescaling. These spaces are often overlapping and characterized by fuzzy geographical boundaries. The formation of soft spaces is often articulated in terms of breaking away from the rigidities associated with the practices and expectations of working within existing political or administrative boundaries but can also be viewed as providing a means of bypassing formal procedures and reducing democratic accountability. Focusing on European territorial cooperation and development strategies in the Baltic region, this paper discusses how they are contributing to spatial rescaling in soft spaces and how the strategies can be seen as a form of soft planning and as a means to promote soft security policy (which could be considered as a wider form of foreign policy).

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Accession: 036840652

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DOI: 10.1080/09654313.2013.772731


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