RTPI urges planners to embrace digital technology

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digital technology
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The Royal Town Planning Institute (RTPI) and Future Cities Catapult have urged the planning profession to strongly consider and implement more use of digital technology

The organisations believe digital technology will free up planners from monotonous tasks, giving them more time to do what they do best – to plan.

Both the RTPI and Future Cities Catapult have today (15th November) signed a Memorandum of Understanding in order to build awareness to the RTPI’s 25,000 members about the benefits of digital technology.

The organisations will also meet with the Housing Minister, Kit Malthouse to discuss how digital technology can help fix the broken housing market.

The agreement between the RTPI and Future Cities Catapult states:

  • The organisations will work together to raise awareness of digital tools and approaches in planning by offering guidance, conferences and outreach programmes – including the joint PlanTech conference in 2019 and a new PlanTech award as part of the RTPI annual planning awards
  • To utilise the RTPI’s partnerships with academia, industry and professionals to research, analyse and communicate the key opportunities for PlanTech
  • To embed PlanTech into academic and CPD courses to ensure that new and existing planners are well placed to lead on this agenda
  • To share lessons and opportunities of PlanTech through the RTPI’s wider international network

Addressing the need for more planners to embrace digital technology, Victoria Hills RTPI Chief Executive said: “Now more than ever we need planners to be strategic and creative to address the challenges and opportunities the country faces.

“In our ongoing campaign for the planning function to be better resourced and valued, we must also look at what planners can do themselves to make their job more satisfying and game-changing.

“Digital technology, already used by many of our members, has huge potential for the profession. This partnership with Futures Catapult will boost our expertise and vision to drive it forwards.”

Happy about the partnership between the RTPI and Future Cities Catapult, Stefan Webb, Director of Digital Planning, for Future Cities Catapult said: “Our research and development has suggested that a digitally transformed planning system has the potential to radically change the way that planner do their work.

“In particular, we are excited about the opportunities to remove many of the dull and monotonous tasks that take up planners time, and free planner to plan.

“This new partnership with RTPI will allow the pioneering work Future Cities Catapult have been doing to bridge the digital divide between town planners and digital technologies, to be scaled to RTPI planners in the UK and its network globally.”

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