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Researching measures of 'spatial justice'

Extensive research of four decades in North Kensington points to a values-led impact analysis (VIA) for communities and policy-makers and decision-takers to achieve improved justice outcomes from regeneration. The North Kensington case study of Colville-Tavistock compares regeneration vision and outcomes, through a four-decade longitudinal study. By appraising strategic spatial interventions through ‘values-led impact analysis’, regeneration outcomes are defined in terms other than financial: those of spatial justice values sought in a liberal democracy. In this expression of ethical values guiding spatial interventions into a more digitized culture may bring a better understanding of spatial consequences from technological changes.​

This systematic and effective approach for assessing spatial interventions through ‘value-based’ indicators – Values-led Impact Analysis (VIA) – relates the usual indicators to programmes of spatial change, through the filter of Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, thereby identifying a quality standard for the degree of spatial justice being sought or achieved.  

By defining a regeneration programme’s aspirations - where they are missing or reached or what has or should be done to make ‘place’ meet Liberalism’s ‘justice as fairness’ - a quality standard for spatial justice is made tangible. At a later stage, objectives viewed through this values-led lens of VIA can be operated as a 'kite-mark' for spatial justice. VIA is a tool empowering communities to measure outcomes from investments in their area, showing how investment impacts on local people.

In post-completion scenarios, this ‘kite-mark’ for the standard of justice outcomes in spatial interventions links tangible with intangibles. Using VIA to investigate regeneration outcomes will help improve future interventions with an evidence-base for addressing ‘lessons learnt’ - an option that is not yet consistently applied to regeneration and other spatial interventions. 

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