Decision making about spatial projects is very complex. Decisions to develop the Rotterdam harbour are taken in the context of a network of local, regional, national, European and international actors, both public and private. These decision-making processes exhibit a lot of complexity and the outcomes are of great importance for the development of the harbour. The complexity is the consequence of interactions between actors connected in different arenas, who are all thinking about the same project. This article uses network theory, and the concepts of actors and arenas in particular, to highlight the complexity of decisions and the connections between various separate decisions. It is demonstrated that the outcomes of the decision-making process are a result of the various connections that are being made. The spatial project at the core of this article is a harbour expansion project called Maasvlakte II.

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Planning Theory & Practice
Department of Public Administration

Klijn, E-H, & van Gils, M.K.A. (2007). Complexity in Decision Making: The Case of the Rotterdam Harbour Expansion. Planning Theory & Practice, 8(2), 139–159. doi:10.1080/14649350701324359