The Irish Government is in the process of developing a National Planning Framework (NPF). This will replace the National Spatial Strategy for Ireland 2002-2020 (NSS). The NSS is generally considered to have been unsuccessful, mainly due to a lack of implementation driven by shortcomings in governance. This paper explores these shortcomings, and suggests ways to prevent similar difficulties with the NPF. The paper concludes that the political process needs to be at the heart of the preparation and adoption of the NPF. There is the danger that the NPF will fail if the political environment remains embedded in traditional approaches to planning across the state.
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