In Chapter 1, we laid out a rationale for seeking a just diversity in cities, which would both conceptualize the social ambitions of planning and examine ways in which they have been put into practice. This intention we framed in terms of three social logics — redistribution, recognition and encounter — which we argued were useful in drawing our attention to different, though related, dimensions of the ‘right to the city’. Trying to form a more just diversity in cities is obviously a normative activity. It is a quest to put in place what should be done. But through the chapters of the book it will have become evident that norms may be simply expressed, but they are never straightforwardly achieved or even defined readily in real-world planning contexts. For in every place in which planners try to improve the social conditions of urban built or serviced environments, they must contend with contests, power relations, shifts in government and governance, and the sheer inertia of old ways of proceeding.
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