In addition to classical spatial planning instruments such as state development/regional plans and spatial planning procedures (ROV), various forms of informal cooperation and moderation have proven very helpful in supporting state and in particular regional development. These so-called soft instruments have their legal basis in Article 13 of the Federal Spatial Planning Act (ROG). It stipulates that the bodies responsible for state and regional planning shall work towards the realisation of the spatial structure plans. This is achieved in particular by subspace development concepts, which are used to propose and coordinate measures of spatial significance, as well as by regional management and in the context of intermunicipal cooperation.
Several forms of informal cooperation have emerged, with different legal structures: round table or forum, consortium, special purpose association, association and limited liability company (GmbH). They are implementation- and project-oriented and based on the principles of self-commitment, voluntariness, partnership and consensus between the acting stakeholders. Special mention must be made of cooperations across the federal states in which the GL was either involved (Dialogforum Airport Berlin Brandenburg) or which it has actively supported (Kommunales Nachbarschaftsforum – Municipal Neighbourhood Forum).
Experiences made in the capital city region and throughout the German federal territory have led to the insight that such projects are only successful if they are supported by regional stakeholders. State spatial planning sees its role in the recommendation of project ideas and support for pilot projects also in the future. Examples of informal approaches to planning in the joint planning region Berlin-Brandenburg include
- intermunicipal cooperation for public service provision
- regional development concept for the Cottbuss – Guben – Forst region
- Airport surrounding BER / Dialogforum Airport Berlin Brandenburg
- MORO “Kooperation und Vernetzung im Nordosten” (Cooperation and Networking in the North-east)
- local neighbourhood forum
- regional parks
- IBA Fürst-Pückler-Land
- Städtekranz (ring of cities) ARGE REZ
The active shaping of cultural landscapes provides opportunities for integrated regional development in Berlin and Brandenburg. Examples are presented in the brochure ‘Kulturlandschaften’ (Cultural Landscapes).