I intressant sammanfattning av forskningsprojekt om stadsplaneringsyrkets kompetenser har tidigare undersökningar visat på brister inom kommunikation, ledarskap, visionsarbete och projektledning. Därför ville man utröna om yrkeskåren var i behov av radikal utbildningsförändring eller om man hunnit ikapp utvecklingen och var mer i fas. Svaret på den frågan verkar i Storbritanniens fall vara att mer innovativa grepp användes i planeringsprocessen men att stor plats för förbättring ännu finns.
Sustainable Communities – places where people want to live and work – have been part of the UK government’s agenda for the past decade, influencing the nature and focus of planning.
Alongside this agenda, calls for greater community engagement in place-making have made increasing demands of built environment professionals; skills which move beyond those that define each profession.
In 2004 the Egan Review called their skills sets into question, suggesting that there were significant gaps, particularly in the ‘generic’ skills such as visioning, project management, leadership and communication.
Mycket har hänt under åren från 2004 både avseende förväntningarna hos planerarna, på platsutvecklingsyrket och planprocessen.
Nedan finns de viktigaste slutsatserna i den uppföljande studien.
Among the key conclusions for built environment professionals are:
• There are lots of new and exciting ways of learning and working that are increasing the adaptability of professionals and the sustainability of communities. Workplace learning is vital. Even routine practices such as Strategic Environmental Assessment can provide a ‘springboard for learning’ (Kidd et al) and the emergence of ‘hybrid’ practitioners can mobilise new networks.
• The way you learn is important – professionals need opportunities to learn in a variety of ways and social learning (learning on the job and in informal settings) is particularly useful. Learning is not just about gaining qualifications and is much more than ‘doing courses’.
• Both built environment professionals and communities need to be aware of their own skills sets and be willing to learn. The research highlights how motivating it is to empower people to build on existing skills sets and create
suitably skilled teams.
• There are many imaginative ways to engage communities and professionals in creating sustainable communities. Approaches including agonism, coproduction, creative writing and action research have been used to reach into
communities divided by conflict, to open minds to new perspectives or complex issues and to engage young people in leadership roles