Communicative Planning for Urban Mobility Online Course
Participatory and collaborative planning processes often evoke strong feelings among urban and urban mobility planners. Participation processes are perceived as resource intense and slow, and the outcome of the public engagement is regarded not necessarily to be in line with the rather extensive participation process. Nevertheless, it comes down to choosing the right tools, defining the objectives for gathering data, and ultimately crystallizing the added value – or the insights – that can only be established by involving a broad audience in the planning process.
The Communicative Planning for Urban Mobility online course presents different approaches to, cases, and applications of communicative urban mobility planning. Collaborative and participatory planning practices are offered as one solution to solve planning challenges in a complex stakeholder network and to ensure the best quality outcome. Communicative planning practices are not new to urban, urban mobility, and transportation planning, but implementing these practices still raises many questions.
- Overview of planning concepts and policies
- Background and context for current planning processes and paradigms
- Tools and methodologies for collaboration and participation
- Case examples of community engagement and participatory planning processes
This online course is designed to support independent study optimally. The study weeks, and the assignments connected to each week, are to be completed within a specified time. The Echo Team assignment (not compulsory – but highly beneficial to maximize learning impact) can be conducted at your own pace. Still, we suggest scheduling an Echo Team session after each week. One of the key aims of this course is to empower and motivate you to explore different collaborative and participatory planning practices and use them in your work.
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This online course is designed to support independent study optimally. Course contents and methods, and tools are hand-picked to be applied in your working environment.
The course is built with faculty members from the Aalto University Department of Built Environment, industry professionals, and public sector representatives.
Research in collaborative and participatory planning urban planning processes has a long tradition at the Aalto University Department of Built Environment, and several academic articles have been published on this matter. Combining the faculty know-how guarantees relevant, high-quality content and impactful learning experiences.
This course is based on the understanding that successful and sustainable urban mobility planning should be done in collaboration with citizens and communities, city officials, private businesses, and other stakeholders. With the help of our course faculty, we will give you an understanding of the context and the world in which we operate, as well as some of the challenges that planners face. We will investigate the role of policy and decision-makers and look at different tools and methodologies for collaboration and participation. Case examples will be shared to help you to understand how the tools apply to real planning cases.
This course is built for urban mobility and transportation professionals, urban planners, and other professionals in public and private sectors working in the field of urban mobility and transportation planning at any stage of their career.
Contents and Schedule
This online course is structured into four core weeks and will take approximately ten hours to complete, depending on your speed and preferred study style. The study weeks consist of interactive video lectures, reflective knowledge checks, and the Echo Teams, which offer a unique insight into communicative planning processes. After activating your account, you have six weeks to finalize your course free of charge.
The Echo Teams are not a compulsory part of the course, but we highly recommend you use this tool and arrange Echo Team meetings with your peers, teams, or colleagues from your work community to reflect on your learning and receive feedback.
The underlying frameworks, tools, and methodologies used in this course are based on common planning practices and academic research conducted in the field. As a result, we strongly encourage you to take action when invited to do so. Further, we ask you to reflect at any time and think about the relationship between the lecture content and your own work. The study journal provided in the course materials is a good tool for keeping notes on your reflections and recording any questions that may arise during the course.
Participation in the course is free of charge and grants you basic access to the online course for six (6) weeks upon registration. Unlimited access to this online course is available for a separate fee.
This online course is designed as a self-study course. No individual feedback or support by the course educators will be provided.
Module 1: Planning Concepts and Policy
- Introduction to planning paradigms
- Understanding policy and policy making
- Identifying policy tools and instruments
- Grasping different power dynamics and interests in the stakeholder network
- Advantages and challenges of public participation
Dominic Stead, Professor, Land Use and Transport Planning, Department of Built Environment, Aalto University
Module 2: Planning Processes
- Introduction to VUCA
- Organizational learning
- Systems thinking
- Knowledge creation in planning processes
- Sustainable Urban Mobility Plans
Miloš Mladenović, Assistant Professor, Transportation Engineering, Department of Built Environment, Aalto University
Module 3: Data Gathering and Engagement Tools
- Defining objectives for community engagement
- Introduction of different participation tools and their applications
- Case: Maptionnaire as a tool for data gathering
- Social media in participatory planning processes
- Role of planners in moderating digital participation
Maarit Kahila-Tani, CEO, Maptionnaire by Mapita
Pilvi Nummi, Post-doctoral researcher, Department of Built Environment, Aalto University
Case: Walkable Helsinki
Introduction to the Walkable Helsinki project. The project acts as an example of a successful public participation process that resulted in improving the walkability of the inner-city areas of Helsinki.
Henna Hovi, Urban Planner, Traffic Systems Department, City of Helsinki
Miloš N. Mladenović is Assistant Professor at the Spatial Planning and Transportation Engineering Group, Department of Built Environment at Aalto University School of Engineering.
Miloš holds a PhD in Civil Engineering from Virginia Tech, USA. In addition, he is a visiting researcher at the Spatial Planning and Strategy Chair, Delft University of Technology, and an affiliate member of 4TU Centre for Ethics and Technology, the Netherlands. His current research interests include the assessment of emerging mobility technologies and development of decision-support methods.
Dominic Stead is Professor of Land Use and Transport Planning at Aalto University.
His research and teaching are mainly concerned with urban and regional governance and sustainability. Before moving to Aalto, Dominic worked in the Netherlands and the UK. He has also spent time as a visiting academic in universities in Australia, Germany, and Malta.
Maarit Kahila-Tani is the CEO and co-founder of Mapita, the company behind Maptionnaire, and works in the domain of community engagement tools for urban planners and city developers.
Maarit has a background in planning geography from the University of Helsinki and in urban planning from Aalto University. Her research focused on new methods for enabling and encouraging wider public participation. In her dissertation, she studied the opportunities for urban planners to take advantage of map-based public participation geographic information system (PPGIS) tools like Maptionnaire to gain ideas and insights from residents.
Pilvi Nummi (PhD, architect) is a Post-doctoral Researcher at the Department of Built Environment at Aalto University.
Pilvi Nummi's research interests are related to participatory land use planning and digital participation. She is currently working on the FinEst Twins research project, which develops smart tools for communicative city planning in Helsinki and Tallinn.
Henna Hovi is an urban planner and is currently working in the City of Helsinki Traffic Systems unit.
In the past, she has worked as a research assistant in Aalto University Real Estate Economics Department and as a planner in Strategic Land Use Planning at the City of Helsinki. She has a background in geography and planning.
As a planner she focuses on all things strategic – whether the scale is an individual street or the whole city. Walkability, bikeability and sustainable human-centered mobility in cities are Henna’s areas of expertise. As well as being in charge of making the first pedestrian strategy for the City of Helsinki, her projects have included street pilots, like the summer streets we saw alongside Kasarmitori in 2020, and cycling planning, including an EU project called Handshake through which Helsinki seeks to learn best practices from Copenhagen and Amsterdam.
In the future, Henna wants to learn more about how to use temporary measures in strategic planning to improve the walking and cycling conditions in cities and what solutions work when we are striving for long-term change.