Book cover image for: Places: Linking Nature and Culture for Understanding and Planning

Places: Linking Nature and Culture for Understanding and Planning


James Gordon Nelson and Patrick L. Lawrence

$44.95 CAD / $51.95 USD

520 pages, 170 illustrations

6 x 9 inches

978-1-55238-254-7 (Paperback)

978-1-55238-493-0 (Institutional PDF)

September 2009

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About the Book

How can we make the best use of the places we live in? In recent years, environmental conservation and sustainable development have become critical parts of the planning equation. However, most attempts to incorporate these considerations have focused too narrowly on specialized economic, geologic, biological, or other factors. With Places, James Gordon Nelson and Patrick L. Lawrence present a new, more complete approach to planning – the ABC method. The ABC method links Abiotic, Biotic, and Cultural factors in a systematic and comprehensive analysis with the aim of achieving better understanding of and planning for the challenges facing places and the people living in them. Examples of the ABC method are presented through international case studies and are illustrated with photographs and maps. This book is written for environmental planners, decision-makers, students, and all those who are concerned about the history and future of places, presenting a new, more highly integrated way of thinking that will help address serious challenges in effective, efficient, and equitable ways.

James Gordon Nelson is a Canadian geographer with a long interest in landscape history, landscape change, and planning. He has focused on the links between research and policy and has undertaken field studies in Canada, the United States, the U.K., Central Europe, Indonesia, and many other parts of the world. He has received numerous awards and recognitions for his work, and is currently a member of the International Commission on National Parks of the World Conservation Union. Nelson holds the position of distinguished professor emeritus at the University of Waterloo.

Patrick L. Lawrence is an environmental geographer with interests in water resources, watershed planning, landscapes, land use change, natural area planning, the Great Lakes, and natural hazards. He has been involved in numerous research projects and studies, including community decision-making for watershed planning, parks, and protected areas, human responses to flooding and erosion hazards, bioregional planning efforts, the use of remote sensing and GIS technologies for land-use planning, and landscape studies. He is currently an associate professor in the Department of Geography and Planning at the University of Toledo.

Praise for Places

This book identifies the major deficiency in the field of environmental planning, which is that issues are addressed from the perspective of one discipline or one dimension . . . The ABC method outlined in the book provides a holistic framework for analyzing the environment and guiding environmental management.

—Thomas Gunton, Director, Resource and Environmental Planning Program, Simon Fraser University