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Built environment build capacity ‘crucial’ to Commonwealth success

Words: Laura Edgar
New Delhi / iStock-494297125

The RTPI is among a number of national and Commonwealth organisations to pledge to help build capacity in Commonwealth countries that are struggling with the impact of rapid urbanisation.

A joint statement released after a UK Built Environment Advisory Group (UKBEAG) round table states that more needs to be done to train a greater number of built environment professionals, and to ensure professional standards are high and well maintained.

Building capacity among the built environment professions, including planning, architecture and engineering, will be critical if the Commonwealth is to tackle its most pressing issues, insisted the organisations.

Janet Askew MRTPI, chair of RTPI International, said: “Unplanned and rapid urbanisation in a number of Commonwealth countries is making them vulnerable to a range of issues including lack of resilience to climate change, inadequate housing and poor health. Planners have a unique and wide set of skills and knowledge which can broker solutions in some of the Commonwealth’s most challenging environments.”

The institute and Commonwealth planning

The RTPI has organised a number of events to coincide with the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM), a biannual meeting of the leaders of the Commonwealth countries that aims to address shared challenges. It is taking place in London, running from 16 April to 20 April.

RTPI events:

  • RTPI Commonwealth Summit Lecture by Sir Terry Farrell, a planner and architect who has worked all over the world. It was held on Monday (16 April) in London. A report on the event will feature in the May edition of The Planner.
  • RTPI West Midlands ‘Think Planning-Think Global: Planning Challenges in the Commonwealth’.
  • RTPI West of Scotland Chapter event on the legacy of the 2014 Glasgow Commonwealth Games.
  • RTPI London ‘Urban Challenges across the Commonwealth’ panel event.

Trudi Elliott to be patron of CAP

The former chief executive of the RTPI, Trudi Elliott MRTPI, has been announced as the international patron of the Commonwealth Association of Planners (CAP), of which the RTPI is a member.

The RTPI said it intends to continue supporting CAP in its work to promote the need for better trained planners across Commonwealth countries.

Additionally, the institute has given its support to a Youth Manifesto, published by the CAP Young Planners, to remind leaders of the important role young professionals play in helping to deliver a sustainable future.

RTPI International says it is commissioning research that will measure cities’ resilience and ability to use planning to manage the impact of climate change, while the 2018 Planning Convention aims to help planners understand how they can help make places more resilient.

Image credit | iStock