The RTPI, in conjunction with software specialists Idox, are delighted to announce the launch of a pilot website for the Map for England which will be live until 31 March 2013. We are looking to develop the map throughout the pilot period, engaging with businesses, authorities and communities to find out what they would like to see on the Map for England.
Map for England News
The three million listeners to the BBC's flagship consumer affairs programme You & Yours who tuned in this afternoon (1.3.2013) heard an interview with RTPI Chief Executive Trudi Elliott talk about the Map for England project.
- Listen to the interview here. The discussion begins at about 41 minutes.
The findings of the Map for England were drawn upon by both the Business Innovation and Skills Minister Michael Fallon MP and Shadow Planning Minister Dr Roberta Blackman-Woods MP to illustrate their points in the Growth and Infrastructure Public Bill Committee last week (29 November), demonstrating the value that bringing together different datasets can bring to informing debate on policy. More information can be found in the news releases section of our website.
Further Map for England articles and briefings include:
Peter Shand, Map for England Project Officer, on a Map for England. Reproduced with the kind permission of GiS Professional Magazine.
The Map for England briefing for the Public Accounts Committee hearing on Planning for Economic Infrastructure
The Map for England in the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors Land Journal
The RTPI Briefing for Clause 7 of the Growth and Infrastructure Bill (pdf).
The RTPI Briefing for Lord Heseltine's No Stone Unturned in the Pursuit of Growth (pdf).
We want your views
So far, the RTPI has been encouraged to find a positive response to our consultation from a wide range of stakeholders including developers, local government and various representative bodies. In fact, of our responses since the launch of the initiative, 95% were of a positive nature.
The debate into whether there should be a Map for England is continuing, and we want to further develop the project through your views. The RTPI would like to work with a range of stakeholders to discuss why a Map for England is good for your sector, and what issues or challenges the initiative may raise.
We want you to help us consider the following questions:
1.Do you agree that government should bring together these plans in single place?
2.What would the benefits of this approach be to your organisation?
3.What are the key policy areas that should be included in a Map for England?
4.Have we missed anything?
Email your response to firstname.lastname@example.org
Read the summary document.
Why do we need a Map for England?
Despite the generally recognised and accepted need to ensure a joined up approach to planning infrastructure and services, there is remarkably still no single place or data source within government that makes all of these maps available to view.
Good progress has been made in various areas but with an overarching framework - a Map for England - policy makers could make better judgments about how individual policy proposals interact with and affect development of the country as a whole. It would also increase consistency in appraisal, improve security and resilience, and provide a better understanding of sectoral issues that might complement or conflict with each other.
Listen to our podcast on why we need a map for England.
Additional benefits of a Map for England include:
Helping to boost growth. Housing, industry and business would be able to make quicker and better informed investment decisions which are more closely aligned to public sector infrastructure funding plans.
Being much more transparent. Local communities would be able to find out about how government plans affect their areas and to influence them.
Saving time and money. When writing new strategies, government departments could see the existing plans for different parts of the country and relate their new strategies to them. Datasets drive innovation.
Helping to coordinate infrastructure across borders with Scotland and Wales.
We commissioned a study from the University of Manchester examining a broad range of existing government policies and how they relate to each other. See the study (pdf, 17.7 MB) and a compendium of policies in map form (pdf, 9.7 MB).
To reach their conclusions, the researchers examined government web sites, individual policy documents and large numbers of reports to find policies and programmes that have strong spatial aspect to them: policies which potentially have a different impact in different parts of the country. It was a major task in itself to pull together almost 100 policy maps.
In about one third of these documents the implications for different places are made explicit but in fully two thirds they are not.
By overlaying a number of these maps and diagrams together, the researchers demonstrated that some policies and programmes, when considered against each other in relation to different parts of the country, may have unintended consequences.
For example, the study revealed that there is considerable overlap between broad areas where housing growth is projected in the future and where there are the greatest environmental and policy constraints to growth. These constraints include the risk of flooding and expected future household water shortages.