City and Regional Planning profession fundamentally aims to influence and supervise public and private sector urban development, investment and design decisions which affect society, places, environment and the economy. It has a significant role in development of civilized, contemporary and egalitarian living environments. Land use decisions, conservation of cultural heritage and environment, housing, transportation and urban function are among the numerous issues addressed by City and Regional Planning profession. Scale of study varies from country and region level to local level depending on the nature of problems.
Within this context, in order to ensure planned development under changing circumstances, planners evaluate spatial, social, demographic, economic and technical data together with aesthetic, cultural (historical-archeological), natural/ecological factors so as to determine aims and objectives for the future, define tools and processes of implementation, recommend alternative proposals to decision makers and undertake role and responsibility in the implementation of those proposals. Planners are ingenious and responsive professionals. Knowledge and experience related to various fields, ability to synthesize several different disciplines particularly social sciences, quantitative techniques, architecture, and engineering, protection of public interest, bringing different actors together and undertaking the role of mediating or facilitating are necessary for planners.
There are a number of factors that highlight the significance of City and Regional Planning profession in the current circumstances of Turkey, these are; ongoing urbanization together with its problems related to site selection, transportation and environment; continuing urban transformation efforts in the whole country; recent changes in legislations related to planning, development, urban transformation, etc.; current issues in the agenda such as designing disaster resilient urban environments and risk management, demand for designing technological and aesthetic urban environments considering the recent developments in the construction sector, and new trends which are aimed at creating balanced, livable, and sustainable living environments that are responsive to the different life styles and needs. Furthermore, establishment of Ministry of Environment and Urbanization and increasing number of regional development agencies enhance the need for planners.
Çankaya University is the first and only foundation university with a City and Regional Planning Department. Undergraduate program of the Department, which offers four years of education, is established in line with the Bologna Process under the European Union harmonization studies. In addition to the must and elective courses offered in the program, there are also summer practices that take place in the second and third years of the education.
The field of City and Regional Planning brings different specializations together; it allows multidimensional and interdisciplinary studies and collaborations. Due to the multifaceted education offered, City and Regional Planning graduates are able to find jobs not only in their own field but also in several fields which require abilities related to problem definition, analytical thinking, solution recommendations development, system establishing, coordination and organization. Furthermore, jobs related to urban research, urban consultancy, urban management, and project management fields which require determination of spatial, social and economic urban problems are also available for the City and Regional Planners.
Major employment opportunities for City and Regional Planning graduates are: public bodies such as Ministry of Environment and Urbanization, Prime Ministry Housing Development Administration (TOKİ), Ministry of Development, Ministry of European Union, Ministry of Tourism, Bank of Provinces, Ministry of Energy, regional development agencies, provincial special administrations and municipalities; international institutions such as UNESCO, World Bank and UNDP; planning offices, remote sensing and geographic information system firms, and real estate appraising firms.
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