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RTPI Research Programme 2019-21

We are currently developing our Research Programme for the next 3 years. This page contains more information on the Programme, and instructions for how members can feed in their views. RTPI members can feed in their views through an online survey until August 31st.


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.

This consultation

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. Therefore it is important for us to give RTPI members the opportunity to shape the future of the RTPI research programme.

We are particularly interested in views on the content of our research programme and its key principles. We also want to hear views on the aims of the programme, and how we can best achieve them.


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).

How to take part

Below are a list of 6 key questions we want answers for. If you are an RPTI member and want to feed into the consultation, you can either respond to the questions by emailing, or fill in this online survey (no login required and no need to answer every question)

1. What are your thoughts on the key principles we have suggested, and are there any other key principles (or values) which you think should guide future RTPI research?

2. What objectives should the RTPI Research Programme seek to achieve?

3. Who should we aim our research at? (e.g. general public, practitioners, policymakers)

4. Where would you like to see RTPI research disseminated? (e.g. RTPI website, mainstream media, academic journals, Planner magazine, trade press)

5. How should we be communicating our research? (e.g. reports, case studies, media)

6. In addition to the topics that emerged from the membership survey (see above), which other research topics should be added to the RTPI research programme?