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PERN Bulletin 3/2011

Transatlantic planning, regeneration and the environment in an era of retrenchment


This years Transatlantic Studies Conference will be held at the University of Dundee from 11-14 July 2011. Papers are welcomed on general topics related to transatlantic themes on planning, regeneration and the environment, as well as those investigating how transatlantic jurisdictions are coping with these tasks in light of reductions in public sector funding. Abstracts of 300 words and CVs should be sent by 30 April 2011 to Tony Jackson or Deepak Gopinath and more information can be found on the Transatlantic Studies Association website.

Working with the Localism Agenda implications for housing and planning professionals

LondonSouth Bank Universityis holding a conference on 7 April 2011 which will consider the impacts and implications of the localism legislation. A number of speakers from the legal, housing and planning professions will provide their thoughts, and three additional seminars will be held following the event focused on key themes from the conference. Visit the website for more details and booking information.

Updating the evidence base on English cities

A new publication produced for the Department of Communities and Local Government provides an update to the 2006 State of the English Cities report. 'Updating the evidence base on English cities' considers new developments in the most critical urban issues, updates key indicators relating to city performance, and identifies gaps in the evidence base to support future policy making.

UKArchitecture, Planning and Built Environment Research Assessment Panel Appointed

Following the appointment, at the end of 2010, ofProfessor Alan Penn to chair the panel assessing the quality and impact of architecture, planning and built environment research in UK universities, the list of 22 panel members has now been confirmed. RTPI members David Adams, Simin Davoudi, Cecilia Wong, Will McKee and Katie Williams will be representing the planning discipline in the panels work.

Infrastructure planning and delivery: meshing the local and sub-regional

A seminar organised by UCL aims to review how issues of funding, governance and devolution are being dealt with at and between the local and sub-national levels. 'Infrastructure planning and delivery: meshing the local and sub-regional' will consider questions such as will Local Enterprise Partnerships create new governance approaches that can go beyond the partnerships that have been common over the last ten years? and how will the Governments interests be defined? The seminar takes place at UCL on 15 April 2011. The programme and registration form can be found here.

Share your ideas to develop a code for high rise homes

Muhammad Riaz Akbar is a PhD research student at the University of Ulster researching Sustainable technologies, environmental subsidies, end users needs and business opportunities in the delivery of zero carbon homes. He aims to produce a framework of sustainability factors to enable the development of sustainable tall buildings. If you have knowledge in this field and would like to participate in this research, please take a moment to complete Riaz's questionnaire.

Link between climate and ancient societies discovered

An EU-funded study has found that periods of climatic instability often coincided with turbulent times in European history. Researchers found that humid and mild summers paralleled fast political and cultural growth of Medieval Europe, while a poor climate may have played a part in triggering the economic crisis in the 14th century. Read more.

Change! Tool

The Change! Tool is a project management instrument that has been developed by WWF-UK and CAG Consultants Ltd to measure the impact of community engagement on behaviour change. The tool provides a simple questionnaire that monitors changes in participants behaviour and enables practitioners to evaluate the impacts of their policies and programmes. Find out more.

National Centre for Research Methods e-bulletin

The February 2011 issue of the National Centre for Research Methods (NCRM) e-bulletin is now online. It includes information on new research methodologies in social science and highlights a number of events that would be of interest to those involved in social science research.

Planning under threat: whats worth fighting for?

The Planners Network UK (PNUK) is holding an event on 15 March 2011 in London which will consider how planning and planners should respond to the Governments attack on local government and public services. Email Tim Marshall or Andy Inchfor further details.

Calls for Papers

Modelling forest ecosystems

Applications are now open for the COST ACTION FP0603 Spring School which is being held in Kaprun, Austria from 9-13 May 2011. The purpose of the event is to bring together PhD students and Post Docs who have an interest in ecosystem modelling to discuss existing models and to try to solve some of the associated problems. The application deadline is 20 March 2011 and further details can be found here.

Shaping climate-friendly transport in Europe

The REACT International Conference on Climate-Friendly Transport will be held in Belgrade, Serbia from 16-17 May 2011. The conference theme is Shaping climate-friendly transport in Europe: Key findings and future directions and will focus on the future research priorities and policy interventions in climate-friendly transport. The deadline for submission of abstracts has been extended until 15 March 2011 Register online.

Other Publications

International review of behaviour change initiatives

The Scottish Government has published an International review of behaviour change initiatives. The document considers a number of behaviour initiatives that have focused on reducing the carbon intensity of consumption practices. It aims to promote understanding of different approaches to behaviour change and explore the transferability of these initiatives to the Scottish context.

New European policy brief Polinares

A policy brief has been published outlining Polinares, an EU-funded research project exploring global challenges in the competition for natural resources. The project aims to propose new approaches to collaborative solutions to these conflicts using expertise from a wide range of disciplines including political science, economics, geology and engineering. Read the policy brief.

Multi-criteria assessment of ecosystems and biodiversity

A working paper written by Stanislav Edward Shmelev has been published which summarises research carried out to develop a new biodiversity assessment method. The methodology takes into consideration multiple stakeholder perspectives and will be of particular value for developing countries where conflicts of interest regarding ecosystems and biodiversity are common and often involve numerous stakeholder groups. Read the paper here.

Measuring our progress: the power of well-being

A report by the New Economics Foundation (NEF) discusses how well-being can be measured and how the data can be used to generate more effective policy-making. There is increasing interest in using information on well-being to evaluate current policies, provide better evidence of the likely impacts of new policies, and identify inequalities in well-being. Read the report.

Grassroots Grants interim evaluation

Grassroots Grants is a government-funded programme that aims to support the voluntary sector in building stronger, more active communities. The interim evaluation report has been published which shows the positive effects of the grants, particularly to small under the radar local groups. Have a look at the report.

Planning healthy and child-friendly communities

The audio presentations, transcripts of keynote speeches, slides and papers presented at the 48th International Making Cities Liveable e-conference are now available online. The conference focused on providing guidance for the development of healthy and child-friendly planning policies and included presentations on Healthy transportation planning and liveable streets and Children and the urban environment.

Flood risk assessment and brownfield regeneration

The Catchment Change Network's (CCN) event on 15 February 2011 focused on flood risk assessment and brownfield regeneration. Presentations are now available online and cover impacts of legislation, contaminant mobilisation concerns and an update on the development of guidelines for flood risk mapping.

Other events

European educational research quality indicators

The European educational research quality indicators (EERQI) project holds its final conference from 15-16 March 2011 in Brussels. The project aims to reinforce and enhance the global visibility and competitiveness of European educational research and improve current standards of research quality indicators in the social sciences and humanities. Register online to attend.

INTERREG IV A 2 Seas cooperation fair

The final INTERREG IV A 2 Seas networking event will take place on 29 and 30 March 2011 at Brighton racecourse. It aims to give participants the opportunity to present their ideas or find a project proposal they are interested in for the 8th or 9th call for proposals. Visit the event website for more information and register by 10 March to attend.

Planning for people

A symposium organised by the Finnish Society for Housing and Planning and the Finnish Anthropological Society will consider the common ground between planning and anthropology. The event takes place on 4 May 2011 in Helsinki and will bring together speakers from both disciplines and work towards a deeper understanding of qualitative research in planning. The programme and registration form can be found on the event web page.

EcoMobility 2011

The World Congress on Mobility for Sustainable Cities takes place in Changwon, Republic of Korea from 21-23 October 2011. The conference will provide fresh perspectives on sustainable urban mobility and focus on the subjects of bike sharing and emerging technologies. More details are available on the event website.