Maurice Rotival: French planning on a world-scale (Part I)
This paper analyses the life and work of the French planner Maurice Rotival through his practical and theoretical work as well as his teachings in cities and regions in Europe, Africa and the Americas. Rotival's plans and projects reflect the influence of major events and changes of the twentieth century – two world wars and the advances in technology and research they promoted, the advent of the automobile, the subsequent urban transformations and large-scale demolitions – and influenced the development of planning in the twentieth century. Through five major steps of Rotival's international career, this article analyses the development of Rotival's pragmatic organic planning doctrine and his regional approach from his experience and training in France at the eve of the First World War, to his subsequent regional and urban planning work in Caracas, New Haven, Europe, Reims and other French cities until the 1980s. By considering Rotival's career as a part of economic globalization at a time when the colonial context was dismantled, the present article highlights the planner's role in societal transformation in collaboration with the e´lite and demonstrates the growing international exchange of planning ideas in the twentieth century.