In alphabetical order


Satellite cities

‘The basic characteristic of a satellite city is that it is a smaller city near a large metropolitan city which has its own local government and economy which is independent of the neighboring large city.’ (Planning Tank, 2019)


Scenario planning

‘Scenario planning encourages strategic thinking and helps to overcome thinking limitations by creating multiple (possible) futures. In this way, it can help to shape the future according to the values and desires of society’ (Stojanović et al., 2014, p.81).



‘In reference to architectural drawing, the term section typically describes a cut through of a building, perpendicular to the horizon line. A section drawing is one that shows a vertical cut transecting, typically along a primary axis of an object or building. The section reveals simultaneously its interior and exterior profiles, the interior space, and the material, membrane, or wall that separates interior from exterior, providing a view of the object that is not usually seen. This technique takes various forms and graphic conceits, each developed to illustrate different forms of architectural knowledge, from building sections that use solid fill or poché to emphasize the profile of the form, to construction details that depict materials through lines and graphic conventions. In an orthographic section the interior is also described through interior elevations of the primary architectural surfaces, while the combination of a section with a perspective describes in depth the interior as a space’ (LTL Architects, 2016, para.1).


Sectoral planning

‘Sectoral planning is strategic planning for defined sector or industries of the economy’ (Parishmwad, 2010, p.1).


Settlement health map

‘A settlement health map showing the broad nature of multiple impacts of human settlement form on health’ (Barton & Grant, 2013, p.131).


Short term tenancy

'"Short Term Tenancy" is an arrangement where the government leases temporarily vacant government land to the private sector on a short-term basis.' ... 'Everyone has the right to rent those sites theoretically' (Liber Research Community, n.d.).


Site analysis

‘Carrying out an extensive site analysis [or context analysis] will assess wether development is financially feasible, and establish parameters to implement the best design that responds to the physical and environmental features of the site. A contextual analysis is a research activity that looks at the existing conditions of a project site, along with any imminent or potential future conditions. The purpose is to inform us about a site prior to the start of our design process so that our initial design thinking about a site can incorporate considered responses to the external conditions. An architectural site analysis will look at issues such as site location, size, topography, zoning, traffic conditions and climate. The analysis also needs to consider any future developments, or changes to the sites surroundings, such as a change of roads designations, changing cultural patterns, or other significant building developments within the area. Understanding the context of a site is key to enabling the designer to weave the new design in with the existing fabric of the site. It allows us to understand the existing opportunities, or problems in a site, and make informed decisions on how to respond to our findings. This response could be that the designed building reflects the surrounding context and is designed to be in sympathy, or perhaps to turn away or eliminate certain unwanted site conditions.’ (First in Architecture, 2018)


Site classification

Building sites are classified under Building (Planning) Regulations – ‘“class A site” (甲類地盤) means a site, not being a class B site or class C site, that abuts on one specified street not less than 4.5 m wide or on more than one such street; “class B site” (乙類地盤) means, subject to paragraph (2), a corner site that abuts on 2 specified streets neither of which is less than 4.5 m wide; “class C site” (丙類地盤) means, subject to paragraph (2), a corner site that abuts on 3 specified streets none of which is less than 4.5 m wide.’ (Hong Kong e-legislation, 2005)


Site Plan

A site plan is ‘a graphic representation of the arrangement of buildings, parking, drives, landscaping and any other structure that is part of a development project. Site plans are often prepared by a design consultant who must be either a licensed engineer, architect, landscape architect or land survey’ (‘site plan’, n.d.).



A slum is ‘a residential area with substandard housing that is poorly serviced and/or overcrowded, and therefore unhealthy, unsafe, and socially undesirable’ (Harris, 2009, p.157).


Smart city

A smart city makes ‘use of software systems, server infrastructure, network infrastructure, and client devices’ … ‘to better connect seven critical city infrastructure components and services: city administration, education, healthcare, public safety, real estate, transportation, and utilities’ (Washburn and Sindhu, 2010).


Social Impact Assessment

‘Social impact refers to the consequences of any public or private actions that alter the ways in which people live, work, play, relate to one another, organize to meet their needs and generally cope as members of society. In some interpretation, social impact may also include the change in norms, values, and beliefs that guide interpersonal relationship and people’s relationship with the society.

In this sense, social impact assessment (SIA) would be the measurement of social impact. It is the process of analyzing, monitoring and managing the intended and unintended social consequences of any planned intervention and actions. The purpose of SIA is to bring about a more sustainable and equitable social environment. Through the process of SIA, practitioners and policymakers, and even the public, can be better informed for the planning of future social services. SIA is not only a good means to promote the effectiveness of social services and encourage public appreciation on services, its forward-looking characteristic make it beneficial for long term social service policy planning and sector development’ (The Hong Kong Council Social Services, 2013).


Social institutions
‘A complex of positions, roles, norms and values lodged in particular types of social structures and organising relatively stable patterns of human activity with respect to fundamental problems in producing life-sustaining resources, in reproducing individuals, and in sustaining viable societal structures within a given environment’ (Turner, 1997, p.6, as cited in Miller, 2019).


Social justice
Social justice is socially reproduced, very often through the mode of production (how things are produced) in a particular society. Cities can be seen as ‘spaces of oppression and inequality but they are also spaces of political liberation’ and so the questions are: ‘what is being distributed, how it is distributed, and with what outcome’ (Newman, 2009, p.195).


Social learning

One of the four planning traditions identified by Friedmann (1988). In this tradition, planners (social learning theorists) believe that ‘knowledge is derived from experience and validated in practice, and therefore it is integrally a part of action. They change residents’ social behaviors through social experimentation, careful observation of the results, and enhancing willingness to admit to error and to learn from it’ (Friedmann, 1988, pp.13-14). Thus, planners aim at empowering residents to put their knowledge into action to change existing power relationships.


Social mobilization

One of the four planning traditions, in which ‘planning appears as a form of politics, conducted without the meditations of “science”. Nevertheless, scientific analysis, particularly in the form of social learning, plays an important role in the transformative process sought by social mobilization. Change is onset by politics of disengagement or by politics of confrontation’ (Friedmann, 1988, p.14).


Social polarization

‘Social polarization is the process of segregation within a society that may emerge from income inequality, economic restructuring, etc. and result in such differentiation that would consist of various social groups, from high-income to low-income. It is the process of growth of low-skilled service jobs at the same time of the expansion of elite of higher professionals’ (Surt Foundation, 2010).


Social reform

One of the four planning traditions, in which ‘[t]he tradition of social reform focuses on the role of the state in societal guidance. It is chiefly concerned with finding ways to institutionalize planning practice and make action by the state more effective; Under this mindset, planners work for a ‘“scientific endeavor”, and one of their main preoccupations is with using the scientific paradigm to inform and to limit politics to what are deemed to be its proper concerns’ (Friedmann, 1988, pp.11-12). While striving for change, the plan actually reinforces the existing power relationship.


Social Return on Investment (SROI)

‘Social Return on Investment (SROI) is an outcomes-based measurement tool that helps organisations to understand and quantify the social, environmental and economic value they are creating. Developed from traditional cost-benefit analysis and social accounting, SROI is a participative approach that is able to capture in monetised form the value of a wide range of outcomes, whether these already have a financial value or not. An SROI analysis produces a narrative of how an organisation creates and destroys value in the course of making change in the world, and a ratio that states how much social value (in £) is created for every £1 of investment.’ (NEF Consulting, 2019)


Socio-spatial segregation
Socio-spatial segregation refers to ‘a state of socio-spatial exclusion and isolation among social groups’, including ‘residential, ethnic, racial and religious’. The segregation can be shown by ‘the residential separation of groups within a broader population’ in the city space (Caner & Bölen, 2013, p.154).


Spatial justice

‘Spatial Justice is a term put forward by the critical urbanist Ed Soja in his book Seeking Spatial Justice. It calls for a reflection on urban space focused on the spatial nature of social interaction and the inequalities that are produced and reproduced through spatial relationships. In a way, seeking spatial Justice advocates for greater control over how spaces are produced. In the words of Ed Soja spatial justice “seeks to promote more progressive and participatory forms of democratic politics and social activism, and to provide new ideas about how to mobilise and maintain cohesive collations and regional confederations of grassroots social activist.” In a way, seeking spatial Justice is about people’s control over how urban space is imagined, planned/designed and lived. It is both a goal and a tool to be used in the process of design’ (100 Resilient Cities, 2004).


Spatial mismatch

‘First advanced by Kain (1968), the spatial mismatch hypothesis argues that black access to employment has been adversely affected by the tendency for jobs in urban areas to shift toward locations distant from black residential centers. The idea is that because racial residential segregation has continued to dis- proportionately concentrate blacks in inner-city ghettos and because blacks have inferior access to automobiles, they'are less capable than whites of physically reaching suburban jobs and are thus more subject to unemployment.’ (Cohn & Fossett, 1996, p.557)


Spatial planning

‘Spatial planning seeks a more holistic approach that aims to combine and translate sector-based policy (economic, social, transport, energy) into a spatial form, recognizing that how a policy is geographically integrated and implemented will make a difference to its success.’ Spatial plan expresses where and in what form policy will unfold, coordinates and aligns initiatives to avoid duplication of effort or divergent policies being adopted, and sets out the governance framework for delivery’ at different geographical scales. (Rogers et al., 2013).


Sponge city
‘“Sponge City” is a modern stormwater management approach to help solve drainage problems, fully utilize land resources and promote sustainable development. To combat climate change, DSD encourages the “Sponge City” concept to be adopted in new developments for more effective drainage and rainwater reuse to enhance urban flood resilience by the principle of infiltration, retention, storage, purification, reuse and discharge’ (Drainage Service Department, 2017).



Architects who have gained three forms of recognition (profession, global commercial and public), and whose individual celebrity status and marketability leads to many cities commissioning landmark projects designed by them (Knox, 2011; McNeill, 2005).


Strategic planning

‘Strategic planning is an organizational management activity that is used to set priorities, focus energy and resources, strengthen operations, ensure that employees and other stakeholders are working toward common goals, establish agreement around intended outcomes/results, and assess and adjust the organization's direction in response to a changing environment. It is a disciplined effort that produces fundamental decisions and actions that shape and guide what an organization is, who it serves, what it does, and why it does it, with a focus on the future. Effective strategic planning articulates not only where an organization is going and the actions needed to make progress, but also how it will know if it is successful’ (Balanced Scorecard Institute, n.d.).


Subprime mortgage

‘A subprime mortgage is a type of loan granted to individuals with poor credit scores (640 or less, and often below 600), who, as a result of their deficient credit histories, would not be able to qualify for conventional mortgages. Because subprime borrowers present a higher risk for lenders, subprime mortgages usually charge interest rates above the prime lending rate.’ (Heyford, 2019) 


Substantive rationality
Substantive rationality has to do with human beings’ ‘inherent capacity for value-rational action’ (Kalberg, 1980, p.1155).


Sustainability impact assessment (SIA)

‘An SIA has two main functions: (i) it is a methodological soft policy instrument for developing integrated policies which take full account of the three sustainable development dimensions and which include cross-cutting, intangible and long-term considerations; and (ii) a process for assessing the likely economic, social and environmental effects of policies, strategies, plans and programmes before they have been formulated’ (OECD, 2010, p.1).


Sustainable cities

‘The city that while providing a high quality of life to a diversified and plural society in the present, establishes the mechanisms necessary to ensure suitable economic and social growth in the long term while maintaining the natural resources of the environment. This will allow future generations of citizens to satisfy their needs on the same terms’ ( Garca-Sãnchez & Prado-Lorenzo, 2010, p.2746).


Sustainable Development Goals (SDG)

‘The Sustainable Development Goals are the blueprint to achieve a better and more sustainable future for all. They address the global challenges we face, including those related to poverty, inequality, climate, environmental degradation, prosperity, and peace and justice. The Goals interconnect and in order to leave no one behind, it is important that we achieve each Goal and target by 2030.’ (United Nations, n.d.)


SWOT Analysis

'A SWOT analysis is a high-level strategic planning model that helps organizations identify where they’re doing well and where they can improve, both from an internal and external perspective. It is an acronym for "Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats"' (Jackson, n.d.).

Reference List

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Caner, Gizem & Bölen, Fulin. (2013). Implications of Socio-spatial Segregation in Urban Theories. Planlama 2013; 23(3): 153-161. Retrieved from

Cohn, S. & Fossett, M. (1996). What Spatial Mismatch? The Proximity of Blacks to Employment in Boston and Houston. Social Forces, 75(2), 557-573.

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