- Is Planning a promising career in a country so densely populated like India.
- Are there enough opportunities to practice this abroad?
- Do students get placed or not if yes are their salaries tremendously low?
You might be surprised to know there are actually around 40 colleges and universities offering courses in Planning. A general trend is found that Undergraduate courses of planning (B. Planning) are usually found in the colleges and universities offering an Undergraduate course in architecture (B.Arch). While the gamut of colleges of planning is not as wide as engineering and medical, it is still widening as more and more private universities are also joining. Current proposals of creating new School of Planning and Architecture (SPAs) would also increase the list of colleges offering planning courses in the country. Now answering your questions one by one :-
1. To answer this question we would say that planning is probably the most promising course in a densely populated country like India. Managing highly dense cities of India surely put up a challenge. But this challenge could only be taken and resolved by a planner. Our holistic approach and our interdisciplinary knowledge makes us highly capable in improving the lives of people. The need of proper planning is quite evident in our country and you would agree to that. However we would also accept the fact that the lack of decision making powers and poor implementation by the concerned authority is the one of the main reasons for the current status of our cities. Planners do have the expertise, but we lack the decision making powers. Indian System has yet to realize the importance of our profession but slowly and steadily things are getting better from where we started. Smart City, AMRUT are very few examples where we could demonstrate our true potential as a planner.
2. Honestly, the planning profession as of now is more respected in the west than in our country. They focus on people and improving the quality of life of their residents. For practicing abroad you need to get the license from the concerned planning authority of that country before practicing. In India we ITPI, Institute of Town Planners India which issues membership (though not mandatory but helpful) in India, however ITPI is not statutory, But in other countries the authorities are statutory.
3. In a college like SPA Delhi and Bhopal which are the frontrunners of the course, usually every year 1 to 2 companies come for on campus placement exclusively for Undergraduate students. It’s hard to say the same for other colleges. The salaries are not tremendously low but if we compare to other technical undergraduate courses like Engineering then yes. As a fresher with only a B.Plan degree, you can expect a job in the range of 15K to 30K depending on your skills and the company. Completing Post graduation with specialization opens more gates than just B.Plan. SPA Delhi has also started an integrated Masters course for B.Plan students which tries to solve these issues.
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