TALK | What on earth for?

Posted on 21/08/2011


I had an interesting but brief conversation with a colleague as we walked from a meeting in Spring Hill to Brisbane’s CBD. On mentioning that I was studying urban planning, he almost guffawed – ‘what on earth for?’ he asked incredulously. That statement does tend to attract that reaction. He made the point that he felt the profession of planning was at odds with what was really needed and that the relevance of such a generalist profession was limited. It’s a sound point and we considered that there was a need to instill a multidisciplinary and interdisciplinary ethos in urban management departments and organisations. We concurred that planning needed to happen in diverse teams drawing on a wide range of skills, experience and knowledge. Planners needed a more strategic outlook as well as an understanding of governance and how to facilitate complex processes of urban change and management.

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