Friday, 30 October 2015

Japan and North America Study Tour 2015

34 Urban Planning students learn about planning in Japan and US!

The Community Planning and Development program at the Bendigo campus is undertaking its ninth international study tour with 34 students undertaking a four week program. In a major development, ten students from the Planning program at RMIT have joined 24 La Trobe students  in the international study tour subject (PLA4IPT) which focuses on visits to a range of universities and cities to see first hand how places are planning for growth and change. 

In Japan, students visited Osaka, Kyoto, Tokyo and the northern city of Sendai in the region impacted by the 2011 earthquake and tsunami. The University of Shokei Guin hosted the students and providing an amazing program about the tsunami and its impacts. Students visited and met with communities where there had been total loss of property and many family members. For some students who had undertaken a previous visit to tsunami affected areas in Sri Lanka this was a visit with very poignant memories. 

Visiting the Sendai region (Photo by Tracy de Cotta)

The US segment involves visits to a range of cities,  each anchored by university with a planning course.

  • Portland State University - Portland Oregon
  • Eastern Washington University - Spokane Washington State 
  • Kansas State University - Manhattan Kansas
  • University of Texas - Austin Texas
  • Wayne State University - Detroit Michigan
This blog documents the journey and reflections along the way. As part of the study tour,  students are required to prepare blog entries around the following questions:

1. ‘Planning’ in Japan – impressions and critique. Planning takes place in physical, social, economic, cultural, political and historical settings – how is the planning context different in Japan?  

2. ‘Planning’ in Portland Oregon. How was the reality different to pre tour expectations and research projects? 

We hope you enjoy the journey with us!