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RTPI Research Programme 2019-21

We are currently developing our Research Programme for the next 3 years. Many thanks to everyone who fed into this process. The consultation is now closed and we will soon develop our strategy.

This page contains more information on the initial proposals that were consulted on.


2019 will see the launch of the new RTPI Research Programme. It will cover 3 years – spanning from January 2019 to December 2021 – and will succeed the 2015-2017 research programme (designed in 2014).

The 2015-2017 Research Programme was articulated around several key axes of research – e.g. the 'Better Planning' Programme made up of three streams (1) Housing affordability, (2) Smart-City Regions, and (3) Climate Change. The 2019-21 Research Programme will aim to respond to the need of addressing both new critical areas of research like withdrawal from the EU, along with longstanding planning issues like Housing Affordability.

Proposals for the programme

We strive to match the professional and intellectual needs of RTPI members with a research agenda that can help address challenges to both planning policy and practitioners.


Representativeness: Reflecting diversity across Nations and Regions, considering both urban and rural areas where possible, promoting research between regions, and speaking with a 'common voice' on cross-borders issues. Developing a 'unified approach to research' that involves and speaks to various audiences, including planning professionals, policy-makers and academics.

Relevance: Tackling critical issues which are high on the Political Agenda (e.g. housing affordability) or particularly important and pressing for planning.

Rigour: A commitment to use, produce and promote rigorous evidence. Promoting robustness at all stages of research and a building a shared understanding around 'good research' to protect RTPI's reputation and to promote sound policy recommendations.


Some of the priorities for 2019-21 have already been identified using the 2017 membership survey, for example housing affordability, housing land supply, viability, climate change and EU Withdrawal. However, we are interested to hear comments and suggestions on new research topics responding to members' interests and needs, aligned with current political challenges, and placing the RTPI at the forefront of robust and innovative research.


In addition to advancing and deepening knowledge on planning issues, the aims of the 2019-21 Research programme will be (1) to offer a unified programme of research able to inform RTPI members, professionals, policy-makers, and academics, (2) to promote and disseminate research on planning issues as widely as possible (e.g. in the Media and policy circles), and (3) to encourage campaigning activities (when possible).