Abstract for: Dynamics of decision issues and decision-making rules in urban regeneration: why the focus of attention changes over time?

The multi-dimensional nature of urban regeneration implies that decision-making for health and sustainability is not easy. Through an in-depth case study with a large English housing association, we found that the focus of decision makers’ attention changes over time. Specifically, the attention to the social mission of a housing association is not sustained as the regeneration project proceeds from early to delivery stage, potentially risking the delivery of health and sustainability outcomes. Drawing on decision-making and institutional theories, in this paper we summarise the tensions of decision-making that the organisation faces in urban regeneration projects. We develop a qualitative systems model highlighting the underlying decision-making rules that explain why attention changes over time. Our findings provide insights of managing competing demands in decision-making. Our method of integrating of change-over-time analysis into qualitative analysis and causal loop diagrams offers a novel approach to connect causal hypothesis and systems behaviours.