Literature reviews at odds: Between conflict management and information overload

This post was posted quite some time ago on the excellent blog of the Association of European Schools of Planning. It was just about time to put the link here too (10 minute read).

The article grapples with information management in literature reviews in general, and more specifically in the domain of spatial planning. It is argued that, as researchers, we face similar intractable dilemmas as planning professionals, namely the need to manage conflicting interests and aims, while at the same time keeping track of unwieldy amounts of information that, it so happens, do have a direct bearing on the state of planning affairs as we know them from first-hand experience. Planning was never about pleasing everyone. But how about climate change and inclusive placemaking. And so it is similar with publishing journal papers: nice work if you can get it! In the same ways as Ella Fitzgerald sings another equally important matter: “you can get it if you try”. But if you really have to try. Very. Hard.

Follow-up articles will consider a state of the art of knowledge management for research, as well as a review of the different types of literature review techniques available to make sense of nonsensical amounts of information. Spoiler alert: you can’t consider everything that directly affects your topic.

Happy reading and do leave comments at the end of the article on the YA AESOP’s website if it tickles your fancy.

Nice work if you can get it! Photo by David Brown on

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