DOI link for Introduction
This introductory chapter presents an overview of the key concepts to be discussed in the subsequent chapters of the book. The book explores how the notion of sustainability has shaped planning research and practice in the Nordic countries in recent years. By introducing the notion of 'sustainable planning policy and practice' through a main focus on the actual settings and practices of local and regional planning activities, it is the intention to facilitate a discussion on the current state of planning for a sustainable future. Planning policy is carried out in cooperation with local inhabitants, who contribute to the process as important creators and reviewers. Liveability involves human interaction with the physical environment in planning practice, focusing on designing and building places that fit the needs and aspirations of residents. The need for planning has never been greater than in the complex societies of today. Municipalities are facing problems that appear in multifarious ways creating conflict along the way.