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Type: Conference paper
Title: Expectations and realities: an exploration in teaching planning ethics to university students
Author: Leditschke, A.
Kellett, J.
Rofe, M.
Butland, R.
Citation: Proceedings of the Australia and New Zealand Association of Planning Schools 2013 Conference, 2013 / Norman, B. (ed./s), pp.21-30
Publisher: University of Canberra
Issue Date: 2013
ISBN: 9781740883948
Conference Name: Australia and New Zealand Association of Planning Schools Conference (27 Sep 2013 - 28 Sep 2013 : Canberra)
Editor: Norman, B.
Statement of
Anna Marie Leditschke, Jon Kellett, Mathew W. Rofe and Rowena Butland
Abstract: Upon graduation, planning students move into a diverse world, ranging from development assessment to policy development and public consultation. Furthermore, students are often thrust into a darker reality of balancing conflicting interests, power struggles and the search for the multi-layered and contentious ‘public interest’ (Tait, 2011). When entering the ‘real world’ of planning practice, the need for students to be adequately prepared for a range of challenges – practical, professional and ethical – is vital (Gurran et al., 2008; Nagy, 2012). This paper presents a preliminary theoretical discussion of current state of planning ethics at tertiary, or university, level and its role in the development of the ethically aware, practising planner. It considers the role of neoliberalism in academia, stressing both the teachers' and students’ roles in understanding the highly political nature of the planning environment. Two case studies – the University of South Australia (UniSA), Australia and the University of Auckland, New Zealand are investigated. Finally, the paper provides a short overview of the need for ethics education in the current environment and its role in developing the ethically sensitive student. This includes discussion of ‘job preparedness/employability’, ‘approachability of teachers and education’, ‘approachability of moral philosophy’ and ‘the importance of self-reflexivity/reflection and positionality’. This desk-top analysis provides a valuable insight into the current state of planning ethics education at two intercontinental universities. In understanding the differences and similarities between these courses, one can begin to appreciate how the nature of assessments, assigned readings and teaching staff contribute to developing the ethically aware professional planner. Both the University of South Australia and the University of Auckland ethics courses enable students to not only begin to understand their role as part of the greater collective of planning and society, but also towards being increasingly self-aware in their own decision-making skills.
Keywords: Ethics planning, planning education, universities; accreditation
Rights: Copyright © 2013 Canberra Urban and Regional Futures, University of Canberra, Australia, and the individual authors.
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