To be sure, to be sure, BE had a fantastic representation last week in Dublin (where the city was experiencing one of its hottest summers on record) at the Joint European (AESOP) and American (ACSP) Planning Schools Congress ‘Planning for Resilient Cities and Regions’. Held at University College Dublin, the Congress had over 1,000 participants from more than 50 countries. A mammoth program of papers across 16 Tracks encompassing the breadth and depth of contemporary planning research and practice, there was plenty to inspire BE’s planners.

Our new Associate Dean Research, Professor Rob Freestone, started his Irish visit in Belfast where he was a mentor at the AESOP PhD Workshop ‘Planning in the Face of Crisis’. In Dublin, the BE contingent included Peter Williams (who presented a paper jointly authored with his daughter, UNSW Law student Angelique Williams, entitled ‘Use of conservation covenants and agreements in land use management: An Australian perspective’); Simon Pinnegar (who presented a paper entitled ‘Incremental urban renewal: living through redevelopment in an age of financial and market uncertainty’); Karl Fischer (who presented a paper jointly authored with BE’s James Weirick entitled ‘Canberra 2013 – Planning and the Centennial’); and Susan Thompson (who presented a paper jointly authored with BE’s Jennifer Kent entitled ‘Planning and Health: Forging New Alliances in Building Healthy and Resilient Cities’).  Rob Freestone also presented at the Congress – his paper entitled ‘Propagating planning knowledge in the 1940s through exhibitions: The roles of the British Council and the US Office of War Information’. Professor Michael Neuman made a major contribution to the Congress.  Not only was he a key note in the final plenary session, Michael gave a paper entitled ‘On the Nature of Urban Planning and the Conditions that Shape it into the Twenty-first Century’ and also presented on a panel addressing the topic of ‘Strategic Planning and the Quest for Certainty’.

As well as being inspired by new, exciting and at times controversial planning research from around the globe, BE colleagues return to Australia with a bevy of images of Dublin showcasing the city’s diverse housing, expansive parklands, civic spaces, redevelopment sites and awe-inspiring heritage buildings. Oh, yes, and there was a Guinness or two enjoyed in the spirit of Irish conviviality to celebrate BE in Dublin!

Joint European (AESOP) and American (ACSP) Planning Schools Congress in session

Text and Images: Susan Thompson