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Public engagement in the planning process in the UK is undergoing rapid change, due to the introduction of revised government legislation and the general migration to e-services. We present a research proposal for the development of the next-generation of public engagement systems based on an understanding of these legislative requirements and the opportunities afforded by emerging methodologies and enabling technologies. We start by outlining the development and current state of public engagement. We then provide an overview of current practice, discuss the factors leading to the current pressures for changes in practice and outline the issues to be addressed. Finally we review current research in the area and provide an outline of our proposal.