This week our third-time visiting professor Nabeel Hamdi is back at our campus to lead his workshop on Participatory Urban Planning. The Oxford Brookes professor, considered one of the earliest trailblazers of this inclusive approach to planning–most notably in poor communities–will be teaching the fundamentals of the practice to our students and delving into specific methods like community action planning.
For those new to the concept or looking to brush-up your knowledge of participatory planning, here are 5 online resources to get you started.

1. The Placemaker’s Guide to Building Community

We might as well start with Nabeel himself. As an author of several landmark publications, including Small Change, Housing without Houses, and most recently The Spacemaker’s Guide To Big Change, his book The Placemakers Guide to Building Community is available online for free and is a great primer.

2. Open Class with Nabeel Hamdi

If you want to see what it’s like to have Nabeel as a professor, here’s a livestream of one of his lectures with our students from last year, in which he talks about the basics of community action planning and specific examples from case studies. It’s a bit more general, but you can also check out his lecture for UN-Habitat.

3. Participatory Urban Planning: Planning the city with and for its citizens


Drawing on leading experts in the field including Jane Jacobs and Jan Gehl,A useful guide published by the Montréal Urban Ecology Centre (MUEC) that outlines participatory planning process and provides practical advice for communities looking to put theses processes into action.

4. Lecture by Gabriel Arboleda on Community Action Planning

Another lecture, this time by Gabriel Arboleda of UC Berkeley, on the origin and trajectory of the methodology of community action planning, and an example of a case study housing project in Istepeque, El Salvador.

5. Handmade Urbanism: From community initiatives to participatory practices

Handmade Urbanism examines the possibilities of urban transformation that stem from community initiatives in Mumbai, São Paulo, Istanbul, Mexico City and Cape Town, and includes interviews with experts and community leaders that help to clarify approaches to local struggles.

Have anything to add? Let us know in the comments!

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