|What is AAPS?|
Founded in 1999, the Association of African Planning Schools (AAPS) is a voluntary, peer-to-peer network of African institutions which educate and train urban and regional planners. Our members are drawn from all regions of Africa (Botswana, Egypt, Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Malawi, Morocco, Mozambique, Namibia, Nigeria, Rwanda, South Africa, Sudan, Tanzania, Togo, Uganda, Zambia, Zimbabwe).
As a knowledge network, AAPS aims to facilitate the exchange of information between African planning schools, primarily through digital communication and social networking tools. Furthermore, AAPS links African and international planning schools through its membership of the Global Planning Education Association Network (GPEAN).
Many African planning schools operate in a context in which urban planning practices, national planning legislation and planning curricula remain largely inherited from their older colonial past, and continue to promote ideas and policies transferred from the global North. As such, many of these ideas and practices are inappropriate in contexts characterised by rapid growth, poverty and informality. Reforming planning education is therefore central to ensuring that future urban practitioners respond to city challenges meaningfully. Fundamental shifts in the content and pedagogy of urban training programmes are required. Promoting these shifts is the central aim of AAPS's project work.
AAPS broadly seeks to promote:
From 2008 to 2011, AAPS operated two projects, both funded by the Rockefeller Foundation. The 'Revitalising Planning Education' project sought to provide a platform to rethink and revise planning education on the continent. The second project sought to promote the use of the case study methodology for planning research and teaching. In June 2011, further funding was secured from the Rockefeller Foundation to pursue the 'Revitalising Planning Education' agenda and to implement a collaborative partnership forged with Shack/Slum Dwellers International (SDI) in November 2010.
In 2012 AAPS produced a communique outlining the Association's apporach to informal settlement upgrading. Click here to read more and to view the document.