The years 2002 and 2003 were marked by an intense struggle for participation in the urban planning decision making process in Rome. The struggle centered around the Master Plan which was to replace the one of 1967. According to the local government the new plan would aim to move the city into global economy and at the same time protect Rome's historical identity. This would be done by using the concept of "historical identity": only sites which could be a resource for global firms would deserve to be part of Rome's historical identity and maintained while others could be changed. In addition, building rights would be given in order to provide local firms - mainly construction companies - with a capital base which would enable them to compete in world markets, assuming that they would reinvest their earnings in the city. In July 2002 the Network for a Participatory Master Plan held its first assembly and during the subsequent six months worked hard using a wide variety of means in order to stimulate debate on the new Master Plan. The main slogan was "Rome does not deserve such a Plan!". The Network challenged the representation of the city proposed by the Plan and asked for the right to "think the city". As a result, on March 2003, the local council made some relevant changes to the Plan. Planning procedures were redesigned in order to allow citizens' participation; the total amount of building rights granted was reduced and the legal status of those rights was weakened. Moreover, the strong opposition to some of the new "planning rules" proposed by the Plan's technical staff affected the national discussion on the new planning law, reopeniung debate on the relationship between city strategies and economic globalization. What about the present? Two years after the local council's ruling, the local government has delayed the completion of the procedures to enforce the new Plan. The Network is no longer working but its participants are still connected and most of them are struggling in different parts of the city to maintain their "rights to the city", from housing rights to the right to public spaces. On our side, two years after those exciting and troubling times, we feel the need to rethink our experience and to evaluate the process, highlighting lessons learned and selecting those elements which can help to develop a wider debate about the relationship between planning rights and the right to the city. Under what circumstances does it make sense to move into the planning process to contest established planning rights on the basis of a "counter" representation of the city? To what extent can we make "counter" use of the language of the plan and its technologies in struggles for the right to the city?
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