- Shaping the new planning curricula in the post-socialistic context – lessons from Poland and Russia   click here to open paper content343 kb
by    Lorens, Piotr & Kamrowska–Zaluska, Dorota | plorens@pg.gda.pl   click here to send an email to the auther(s) of this paper
Short Outline
Planning education was to a large extent non-existent in the formerly
socialistic countries. Therefore, after successful political and economic
transformation, the need arose for developing the new planning curricula,
focused on the situation and problems that have to be dealt with in the
context of post-socialist countries.
Planning education is the issue widely discussed during various conferences
and seminars, especially ones grouping the representatives of universities
offering professional education in this field. But to large extend this
discourse is dominated by the realities and specifics of the highly-
developed countries, which is also reflected in the structure of the
organizations of universities offering these. At the same time planning
education in these countries is in many cases limited to socio-economic
issues, with no attempt towards dealing with physical planning or urban
design. This situation is characteristic to many highly developed
countries, like Western Europe or North America.

Different situation occur in the post-socialistic countries, where planning
profession is traditionally dominated by graduates from the programs in
architecture, frequently (and traditionally) treating planning as the
“large scale architectural design”. Graduates of these programs have very
little knowledge about the social and economic processes, and are not ready
to deal with modern planning regulation making processes. At the same time
the cities in Central and Eastern Europe (as well as in other post-
socialistic countries, including ones in various parts of the world) are in
desperate need of modern planning solutions and planners able to deal with
their problems. But these involve both urban design and planning as well as
development issues, also – emerging from the political and socio-economic
specifics of these countries.

Therefore, there is a need to rethink the curricula of the universities
dealing with planning education within these countries. In result, there
should be discussed and produced set of recommendations, which could be
implemented in various universities and other institutions of higher
education. Within this process the successful examples of the programs
already implemented should be taken into account.

The paper will include a presentation of the problems and specifics of
planning education in the post-socialistic countries as well as key lessons
emerging from the analysis of the already implemented new planning
curricula. Its conclusions will include the set of recommendations to other
institutions in need of curriculum reform and/or development, as many
universities are nowadays introducing planning programs. The examples
discussed will include the Polish and Russian cases, which were analyzed by
the author during his academic career and contacts with various educational
institutions in the Central and Easter Europe.
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