Growing shortage of minerals and waste planners, survey shows
Planners working in the minerals and waste sector have a high level of job satisfaction, according to a questionnaire survey conducted by the RTPI to better understand the planning capacity and skills issues of the industry.
Some 78 percent of respondents said they “like their job” or “would not do anything else”, despite the sector often being perceived to be less attractive than other planning specialisms.
But the survey also highlighted a worrying capacity issue with over 80% of respondents saying there is a growing shortage of skilled and experienced mineral and waste planners either in local authorities or in the private sector.
Many felt that the skills are transferable and that more needs to be done to attract graduates and school leavers earlier to the sector from other areas of planning or the built environment. 72% said they only became a minerals and waste planner by chance due to job circumstances/opportunities.
Andrew Close, RTPI’s Head of Education and Careers, said: “The institute is constantly keeping abreast of issues that affect the health of the planning profession. As the UK moves into another phase of intensified building construction the demand on mineral and waste planning will also grow.
"This is a timely survey that will help us and the sector to raise awareness of the issues around succession and capacity and take appropriate actions. We have launched a Town Planning Apprenticeship scheme to attract school leavers and others to the profession and encourage the sector to sign up.”
The RTPI will raise the issue of minerals and waste training with UK accredited planning schools in 2016. The institute will continue its work with the UK Minerals Forum and Minerals Products Association on relevant projects that will promote the industry to young people in schools. It will also support training and skills transfer among existing practitioners supporting industry led events and relevant Continuing Professional Development materials.
Read more about the survey here.
Read more about apprenticeships here