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08/09/2016

UCL campaign wins RTPI Sir Peter Hall award

Words: Laura Edgar

The winners of the 2016 RTPI Awards for Research Excellence have been announced at a ceremony at the UK-Ireland Planning Conference in Cardiff.

A national movement campaigning for high quality places brought together by the University College London has won the Sir Peter Hall Award for Wider Engagement.

The Place Alliance brings together built environment sector organisations with an interest in place design to build consensus around policy that would lead to high quality places. Organisations involved include the Royal Institute of British Architects, English Heritage, the Prince’s Foundation and the RTPI.

The RTPI said the Place Alliance demonstrates the important role universities can play in providing a neutral setting engage a range of stakeholders from community-led organisations to national government. This has allowed them to build policy consensus about the importance of high quality planning and urban design. The work undertaken by the Place Alliance has fed directly into the work of the select committee for National Policy on the Built Environment.

Dr Michael Harris, head of research, RTPI, said: “The winners and highly commended entries have demonstrated how academic researchers can positively reach out to practitioners and policy makers with insights and finding to inform and influence their work. I am pleased these awards have been able to celebrate such impactful, high quality research again this year.”

Edinburgh-based consultancy Ryden won the Planning Consultancy Award for its review into the effectiveness and challenges of delivering infrastructure in Scotland. Its report broadly concluded that housing and development planning is not well embedded in infrastructure planning. It contains 35 recommendations, including more joined up working across public and private sectors.

Planning for Infrastructure also calls for planners to be recognised as “place providers” who show leadership in identifying, costing and delivering infrastructure as an integral part of the future development of an area.

It was commissioned by the Scottish Government and Transport Scotland.

‘Planning gain: providing infrastructure & affordable housing’, by Tony Crook, John Henneberry and Christine Whitehead of the University of Sheffield won the Academic Award.

The Early Career Researcher Award was won by Linda Fox-Rogers, Queen’s University Belfast, and Enda Murphy, University College Dublin for ‘From brown envelopes to community benefits: the co-option of planning gain under deepening neoliberalism’.

Adam van Heerden, University of Cape Town won the Student Award for ‘Valuing waste and wasting value: Rethinking planning with informality by learning from ‘skarrelers’ in Cape Town’s southern suburbs.

The awards were sponsored by Routledge/Taylor & Francis Group and Idox plc.

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