Report by Demos: Most severe housing crisis for decades

This report considers one potential solution: better involving people in the planning system to get more homes built. We find engagement in the planning system is low and that people often feel shut out from decisions about housebuilding in their local area.

This means housing developments too often fail to match the needs and desires of local residents, leading to opposition and conflict in the planning system. Furthermore, those that are engaged - retired homeowners, for example - are often the least likely to support new housebuilding in their local area.

This suggests that opposition to new homes could be reduced by housing developments better reflecting the wishes of local people. It also suggests that involving a broader range of people in the planning process could lead to prodevelopment voices being better heard.

This report outlines a number of potential changes to the current planning system to achieve this. It also seeks to overturn the view that people are intrinsically a barrier to getting more homes built.

We find that local residents often support new homes in their local area, but that the planning system too often shuts them out of housebuilding decisions, leading to developments they are unlikely to support. Properly harnessed, people power can get more homes built and tackle our housing crisis.

Achieving this may require new forms of decision-making - such as citizens’ assemblies - which build consensus and can help overturn the oppositional nature of the planning system.

Read the full report here

Credit: Demos - www.demos.co.uk  - September 2019