This paper presents a discussion on the scope of urban planning and on the nature of its knowledge starting from suggestions contained in the work of Henri Lefebvre. The first part examines this French philosopher’s thinking on space and urban planning and underlines that one indication that can be grasped from it is the need to depoliticise knowledge of urban planning (to be able to re-politicise space). The second part underlines the distance that exists between this proposal and the typical assumptions on the other hand of various interpretations which have supported and currently support the need for some sort of politicisation on the part of planners (advocacy, pluralist, radical, communicative, collaborative planning). This comparison is used as a basis to trace the outline of a proposal which clearly recognises the specific limits of the discipline, arguing that it can be brought within a system of technical rules that govern the relationship between the regulation of space and social regulation.
Keywords: Lefebvre; politics; technical rules