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Thread: Scientific journal idea

  1. #1
    Dec 2006

    Scientific journal idea

    I have an idea for an entry in a scientifc journal (probably JAPA or some other publication). Has anyone had any experience with this? I'm not an academic, but would like to contribute to a journal as a planner. Are there any sources for funding?

    I also went to the websites for think tanks including the Smart Growth Network, Congress for the New Urbanism, Urban Land Institute, the Lincoln Institute of Land Policy, and the Chaddick Institute. However, I don't know the degree each of these organizations are open to outside reasech. Any and all thoughts are appreciated.


  2. #2
    I am a professor.

    Funding for article research is not all the easy to get, but it does exist

    What is your general topic idea (specific idea if you feel comfortable saying what it is).

    Most funders have very specific topic areas.

  3. #3
    Dec 2006
    The paper would measure the economic impact of individual components of design guidelines. This would include a sample of communities (N=100 or 200, 300, etc.). A matrix would be created that includes

    1. Community Data: geographic location, population, area, retail sales, and other variables.
    2. Components of the Design Guidelines: Community #1 might have recommendation A, B, C; community #2 might have recommendations B,C, D; community #3 might have recommendations X, Y, Z.

    I chose to limit the sample to communities who have design guidelines that were adopted at least 10 years ago. There aren't many of them, but I chose this number because it would allow enough time for when the plan was adopted, when it was implemented, and how it has created an economic impact in the community.

    I might be able to measure a level of significance between these variables, but I am extremely skeptical about the practicalities of this research. I chatted with my mentor about this idea this morning, and he reinforced my skepticism. I think there are far too many other variables that determine economic impacts in a community besides aesthetics. He suggested that I survey business owners regarding design guidelines, but even then it will just be a loose collection of subjective views regarding design guidelines.

    The ultimate goal of the paper is to help communities determine the most feasable design guidelines out of the usual laundry/wish list that makes up these recommendations. Again, I don't know if it can really be done because of all of the other variables.

  4. #4
    Your mentor is right, it would be very difficult to tease out the effects of the design guidelines from all the other things going on. A focus group or a questionnaire targeted towards how business owners felt about the guidelines would be interesting, but again, it wouldn't really offer definitive proof.

    JAPA would be interested in the results, so would a journal like the Urban Affiars Review or the Journal of the Urban Affiairs Association.

    Funding for something like this is not easy to get. I don't think the Fannie Mae Foundation is still giving out research grants. The Brookings Institute might have some ideas as well.

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