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National Planning Framework for Scotland

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NATIONAL PLANNING FRAMEWORK FOR SCOTLAND

THE IMPORTANCE OF PLACE

65. The increasingly inter-connected nature of the global economy will be a key driver of change for all countries over the next 25 years. Rapid increases in the power and availability of communications technologies have facilitated the globalisation of the economy over the past decade. The impressive pace and scale of this phenomenon has, perhaps, obscured the enduring importance of place. Indeed, the huge increase in flows of information across global networks has led to claims that place will become increasingly irrelevant to economic success.

66. However, issues of place are increasingly being recognised as important. Businesses choose to locate where they can have access to creative, well-educated and talented people and venture capital flows to places which have the sort of physical and social infrastructure which supports innovation. This in turn dictates the ways in which places must compete. Creative people are attracted to places which are already centres of creativity and rewarding places to live. They gravitate towards cities and regions which offer a variety of economic opportunities, a stimulating environment, amenities for a wide range of lifestyles and good connections to other high quality places. Successful places have strong, positive identities. They are cosmopolitan, well-connected and diverse, offering opportunities for a wide range of creative interaction. Planning must therefore place emphasis on quality and connectivity.

67. A positive sense of place is just as important in rural areas. As the rural economy changes, a high quality environment and a strong cultural identity will be key assets in promoting community development and diversification into new activities.

CREATIVE PEOPLE ARE ATTRACTED TO PLACES WHICH ARE ALREADY CENTRES OF CREATIVITY AND REWARDING PLACES TO LIVE
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