Little cognizance about Planning as an academic course

Every individual wants a bright future for themselves. Many a times, parent pressurize children to go against their own will and follow their parent dreams. Since age-long, profession like doctor, engineer, lawyer, journalism, architecture have been the dominating ones. There are numerous professional courses that a student can pursue but some are overexposed, some are underexposed. The story starts with the pressure to pursue the best possible career after senior secondary school. JEE paper I (entrance exam for engineering) has a sister entrance exam JEE Paper II which leads to the entrance in prestigious “Architecture” Colleges. A few aspirants who give JEE Paper II exam, aspire for architecture but a handful know about planning. Maximum aspirants come with the aim of becoming architects, but handful come to become planners.

Key difference between B.Arch. and B.planning

 B.Arch is of 5 year duration whereas B.Planning is a 4 year program. The work nature is different for both B.Arch graduate and B.Planning graduates. B Arch is basically designing and learning about spaces limited to individuals. B plan is studying and designing spaces confined to a large areas, like a city, town and lots of infrastructure, environment, regional criteria a are involved in this.

An architect is basically a professional who deals with the design and construction of buildings. His job requires a great accuracy as even a small variation in his design can lead to complex situations. A planner deals with the planning that is a must for certain human settlements.

Bachelors of planning is not a new academic course but 29 yearlong started programs. It is a 4 year undergraduate course involving ultimate planning techniques, provide better understanding of policies and ultimately making policies & master plan which helps in improving the living condition in a place. Some of the prestigious Indian institutes who enrol students are SPAs, IIT’s, and NITs.

Without city planners, cities can’t be designed. We use three commercial area, schools, and purchases houses, are able to differentiate between underdeveloped and developed areas – this is all due to the way in which planners plan or think about the city as a whole and how they perceive the city as a unit. Doctors save up the lives and teachers are the source for a literate population, but the planner decides the location of the hospital and school both, without which neither is possible.  Construction of new houses, their heights, the landscaping, type of housing, lack of housing and proposals for the new ones are some off the task performed by a city planner.

There are various types like transport planner, urban, regional, environment, and housing and have their diverse roles. E.g transport planner looks into the matter of traffic signals, location of roundabout traffic management, types of transportation in the city according to the requirement and carrying capacity of the city. Future prospects planning is not lucrative in short run. There is lack of jobs in cities even though there is large need of planners. This is due to lack of awareness & understanding about the course. Scope & income of planners is much less in India as compared to that of developed and some developing countries.

Planning defines own boundary and has no restrictions. It’s about making plans, policies for 10-20 years in future and thus requires experience. Planning courses are being run in many foreign universities. According to Janagarh (2010) around 3000 planners are needed per year, whereas in comparison only 400 planners are produced per year in India. Thus, there is a huge demand and supply gap for professional planners.

Work and job opportunities

Employed by Development Authorities. The problem is that the post of planners can also be taken by Architects, Civil Engineers, Geographers, Sociologists because of lack of awareness about working of planners and also because students from these field can pursue M.Plan. Some organisation recruiting planners are NITI AYOG, TCPO. Government operated Housing schemes, Government Transportation Projects (Highways, Railways and Metros etc.), Government Construction and rehabilitation projects, PWD job posts, Municipal Corporation job posts etc. are well-known Government job opportunities available in front of planning graduates. Government agencies taking care of above mentioned and/or similar services are known to recruit planning professionals. When it comes to private sector, firms indulged in Realty Development, Construction firms, Architecture and Interior Design firms, Public Structure Construction firms (PPP model- like roads and bridges etc.), NGOs etc. are known to recruit planning professionals. Thus, planners form the city, shape the city and are an integral part of the place.

Author Bio: Vibhuti Raina is a 2nd Year B.Planning Student at School of Planning & Architecture, New Delhi.

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