Strengthening participation using interactive planning support systems: a systematic review

J. Flacke*, Rehana Shrestha, R.M. Aguilar

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articleAcademicpeer-review

31 Citations (Scopus)
160 Downloads (Pure)


Interactive Planning Support Systems (PSS) implemented on a maptable are deemed suitable to support participatory planning processes. They are supposed to facilitate exchange of knowledge between stakeholders, consensus building among them, and group-learning processes. In this systematic review, based on 16 case studies using interactive PSS, we analyze how these have contributed to the goal of strengthening stakeholder participation. To this end, we first elicit details of the interactive PSS and the related participatory processes. In the second step, we analyze how and what the studies report, as the impacts on participation. Results show that tools and applications have become more sophisticated over time and goals of the studies changed from collaboratively designing interventions to observing and understanding how the application of such tools contributes to improved plan outcomes and group-based learning. All interactive PSS succeeded to facilitate intensive stakeholder collaboration. However, many studies lack a proper framework for investigating its impacts on participation and therefore assess these rather incidentally based on implicit assumptions. Thus, a significant outcome of this review is an evaluation framework, which allows the structural assessment of the impacts of interactive PSS on stakeholder participation.
Original languageEnglish
Article number49
Pages (from-to)1-31
Number of pages31
JournalISPRS international journal of geo-information
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 15 Jan 2020


  • Participation
  • PSS
  • Interactive PSS
  • Collaborative planning
  • Maptable
  • Stakeholders


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