CP0110 - Introduction To Spatial Planning

SchoolCardiff School of Planning and Geography
Department CodeCPLAN0
Module CodeCP0110
External Subject CodeK400
Number of Credits20
LevelL4
Language of DeliveryEnglish
Module Leader Dr Richard Cowell
SemesterAutumn Semester
Academic Year2013/4

Outline Description of Module

This module examines the origins of spatial planning in Britain, and explains how the current system has evolved. Particular attention is given to key themes in the emergence of British planning: its emergence as a local government activity; the impact of professionalisation and ‘visionary’ thinkers; changing political ideologies, and the shifting spatial scales of planning. Building on this historical foundation in the second half of the module, students will be introduced to the current structure of planning - its institutional, legal and political basis - with links being made to emerging debates about spatial planning at national, local and European scales. Students will be given a chance to observe planning decision-making processes in a planning committee meeting.

On completion of the module a student should be able to

1.    understand and explain the development of spatial planning practice and policy, by reference to social, economic and political and environmental events, to historical antecedents, and to the ideas of visionary figures

2.    demonstrate working knowledge of the structure, instruments and key actors in contemporary planning

3.    understand the significance of planning documents and other factors in making planning decisions

4.    apply skills of critical thinking, and the critical reading of texts

How the module will be delivered

The module will be delivered through a combination of lectures, reading seminars and workshops. There will be a two hour lecture every week, accompanied by Powerpoint slides that summarise key issues. These slides will form the basis of class handouts which, along with suggested additional reading, will be made available via Learning Central before each lecture commences. In some lectures, small-scale group work exercises will be conducted in which students report back to the class as a whole.

There will be four reading seminars during the module, in a separate timetable slot. Students will be issued with items of reading (usually a short chapter) one week prior to each seminar and be expected to read it and think about some key questions, which are also provided in advance. In the seminars, students work in small groups and with the lecturer to explore answers to the key questions. For the seminars, students are organised into groups of 10-15.

In an additional session, students observe a video streaming of a planning committee meeting into a controversial supermarket proposal. Based on their observations, there is then a follow-up workshop to explore how the planning committee works as a decision-making process. For the workshops, students are organised into groups of 15-20.

Skills that will be practised and developed

How the module will be assessed

The formal assessment of this module is through an unseen exam paper in which students must write three answers (essays) from a selection of seven questions within a two hour period. The final lecture of the semester spends 45 minutes discussing how to approach the exam and revision. Supporting the revision process are two multi-choice quizzes on Learning Central: one for the historical component of the module and one for the contemporary element. Students are not formally marked on their quiz scores but can use the quiz to assess how well they are learning the module material.

Assessment Breakdown

Type % Title Duration(hrs) Period Week
Examination - Autumn Semester 100
Introduction To Spatial Planning
2 1 N/A

Syllabus content

This module examines the origins of spatial planning in Britain, and explains how the current system has evolved. The level is introductory and it does not assume any prior knowledge of planning. Particular attention is given to key themes in the emergence of British planning: its emergence as a local government activity; the impact of professionalisation and ‘visionary’ thinkers; changing political ideologies, and the shifting spatial scales of planning. Building on this historical foundation in the second half of the module, students will be introduced to the current structure of planning - its institutional, legal and political basis - with links being made to emerging debates about spatial planning at national, local and European scales. Students will be given a chance to observe planning decision-making processes in a planning committee meeting.

Essential Reading and Resource List

The following are useful introductory readings for the module as a whole. Each week, additional and more-up-to-date readings will be issued to support the topic being discussed, and these lists will be placed on Learning Central.

 

The main text that we recommend for the historical part of the module is:

 

·         Ward S (2004) Planning and Urban Change, 2nd edition Chapman

 

Students will also find it useful to delve into:

 

·         Hall P (2002) Urban and Regional Planning, Routledge.

·         Hall, P (2002) Cities of Tomorrow, Blackwell (chapters 2-5, 11)

·         Rydin, Y. (2003) Urban and Environmental Planning in the UK, 2nd edition, Palgrave

·         Thornley A (1993) Urban Planning Under Thatcherism, 2nd edition, Routledge, Chapters 2, 6-10

 

For the second half of the module we strongly advise that students keep up to date with what is happening to planning through Planning Magazine and Town and Country Planning. There is a core text that covers all aspects of UK planning; it contains plenty of detail but it is not fully up-to-date:

 

·         Nadin V and Cullingworth B (2006) Town and Country Planning in Britain, 14th edition, Routledge.

Students will also find it useful to look at the following:

 

·         Communities and Local Government (2012) National Planning Policy Framework, March 2012, London: Department for Communities and Local Government - https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/6077/2116950.pdf

·         Cowell R (2013) ‘Greenest government ever? Planning and sustainability after the May 2010 coalition government’, Planning Practice and Research (in press; available on Learning Central)

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