Who Else is "Planning?"
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There are many organizations affiliated with planning. The ACSP considers them partners, colleagues and advocates for positive change. Understanding them and their far-reaching implications for local through global planning efforts may entice you more toward obtaining an advanced degree in planning.

Index for this page:


The Planning Accreditation Board


The PAB is jointly sponsored by ACSP (the organization of planning schools), the American Planning Association (the organization of professional planners), and the American Institute of Certified Planners (the accrediting body for professional planners). The PAB's mission (descriptive flyer) is to ensure high quality education for future urban planners. Accredited programs must meet strict standards developed collaboratively by both practicing planners and planning academicians. Not all accredited schools teach the same courses or emphasize the same subjects–in fact, the differences between the schools appeal to different student interests. But the curriculum at all accredited schools provides a core set of theories, methods, and techniques which properly prepare students for a career as a practicing planner. You can search The Guide for accredited schools.


GPEAN Global Planning Educators Association Network


Promoted by of APSA, AESOP, ACSP and ANSAPS, the first World Planning Schools Congress was held in Tongji University in July, 2001. There were nearly 1000 officials, scholars of urban planning, educators, students and practitioners gathered making a deep discuss on the common achievements in urban planning and construction, communicating actively on working experience, as well as referring to practical experience of the other countries, cities and research partners.

According to the common sense of the above paragraph, to deliver the spirit to the whole world, 10 countries and transnational planning educational organizations, gathered signing the SHANGHAI STATEMENT on July 14th, which declares: on the goal of increasing mutual communication in order to improve the quality and visibility of planning and planning education. To achieve this, it was agreed to establish a global planning education association network and committees to host the second World Planning Schools Congress and to develop an inclusive communication network. In addition to the ACSP, the current ten other members of the GPEAN are as follows:

  • ACUPP Association of Canadian University Planning Programs
  • AAPS Association of African Planning Schools
  • APERAU Association for the Promotion of Education and Research in Urban and Regional Planning, or Aménagement et Urbanisme
  • AESOP Association of European Schools of Planning
  • APSA Asian Planning Schools Association
  • ANZAPS Australian and New Zealand Association of Planning Schools
  • ALEUP Latin American Association of Schools of Urbanism and Planning
  • ANPUR National Association of Urban and Regional Post-Graduate Programs - Brazil
  • TUPOB Association of Planning Schools of Turkey
  • ASPI Association of Indonesian Planning Schools



American Planning Association


APA is a professional planner's association, an independent, not-for-profit educational organization that provides leadership in the development of vital communities. We measure our success by the successes of our members and the communities they serve. The APA was created in 1978 by the consolidation of two separate planning organizations, but its roots grow all the way back to 1909 and the first National Conference on City Planning in Washington, D.C. The APA helps certified planners negotiate ethical and moral dilemmas, and offers a guide to ethical conduct for others in the planning process. In addition, The APA Foundation funds scholarships, community equity programs, new initiatives and special research projects. The APA and the AICP have worked to increase social equity, diversity, and minority participation. Minority populations will be better served by planning - and planners will better serve their communities - if more people of color choose careers in planning.

APA partnerships with ACSP and the academic community:

  • University Toolkit/Free Student Enrollment - Each Fall and Spring, planning programs receive a membership toolkit to help market APA membership and engagement. The toolkit includes posters, table tents, brochures and flyers.
  • Academic Membership Program - This program is offered to university programs that are Full Members of ACSP. The APA Membership Committee is currently evaluating and identifying opportunities for collaboration, especially with APA's Divisions.
  • Divisions Council Smart Cities and Sustainability Initiative - One of the actions of this initiative is to identify partnerships to research key technologies including university/industry partners.
  • Water Working Group - One of this group's priorities is to increase educational opportunities on water for planning professionals and academics.
  • Sustaining Places Comprehensive Plan Standards - This working group is implementing a pilot program to recognize exemplary comprehensive plans that meet the standards.
  • Sponsored Research Projects - APA routinely engages academic partners on sponsored research projects.
  • Student Awards and Scholarships - the APA offers several award and scholarship programs for students and student projects at the national, chapter and division levels.
  • APA Academic Task Force - This task force is charged with developing implementable ideas to encourage interactions and partnerships between practitioners and academics and the membership of academics in the APA.

For more information, please visit www.planning.org, or contact Monica Groh, Director of Emerging Professionals at APA, mgroh@planning.org.


American Institute of Certified Planners


The American Institute of Certified Planners is the American Planning Association's professional institute and the recognized leader in certifying professional planners and promoting ethical planning, professional development, planning education and standards of practice.



Urban Affairs Association


The Urban Affairs Association (UAA) is the international professional organization for urban scholars, researchers, and public service professionals.

The Urban Affairs Association is dedicated to creating interdisciplinary spaces for engaging in intellectual and practical discussions about urban life. Through theoretical, empirical, and action-oriented research, the UAA fosters diverse activities to understand and shape a more just and equitable urban world. (Adopted March 12, 2010)


Other Professional Planners' Associations



Learned Societies


Other Higher Education Groups in North America


The Association of Collegiate Schools of Planning promotes education, research, service and outreach in the United States and throughout the world by seeking to:

  • recognize diverse needs and interests in planning;
  • improve and enhance the accreditation process, and;
  • strengthen the role of planning education in colleges and universities through publications, conferences, and community engagement;
  • extend planning beyond the classroom into the world of practice.