Almost three quarters of Germans live in cities, and the trend is rising. All of these people need apartments, a functioning infrastructure, places to relax and much more. Urban and spatial planners create concepts to do justice to the residents of cities or entire regions . In doing so, they always deal with current social developments.
Urban and spatial planners have to coordinate their work with many different interest groups and institutions: When building residential areas, the needs of the steadily growing proportion of older people in our society are in the foreground. Factory facilities should have as little impact on residents and nature as possible.
Course content of urban and spatial planning
In order to be able to plan cities and regions sustainably and in the interest of everyone, comprehensive training is required. Courses in the field of urban and spatial planning therefore deal with:
- Engineering basics of urban planning
- Methods of urban and spatial planning
- Environmental science
According to Liuxers, urban and spatial planning is offered as an independent course of study at numerous universities, technical universities and technical colleges. Anyone interested in the subject shouldn’t be afraid of science subjects and math . An affinity for technology and IT is also helpful. Good spatial awareness and the ability to think analytically and creatively are also good prerequisites for studying urban and spatial planning.
In the bachelor’s degree
In the first semesters of the bachelor’s degree, students impart the theoretical basics of urban and spatial planning. The curriculum includes subjects such as urban and building history, building law and theories of architecture .
The practical training of future urban and spatial planners is important right from the start: The students learn to use computer-aided drawing programs and information systems and are taught basic design skills. Also, statistics and engineering subjects such as building construction are on the program.
In the higher semesters, students acquire advanced specialist knowledge in the field of urban and spatial planning. Topics are, for example, city management, landscape and environmental planning or real estate management . Most of the Bachelor programs have integrated study projects and internships in which the students can put what they have learned into practice.
In the master’s degree
Graduates are only allowed to officially call themselves urban and spatial planners if they have been included in the city council’s lists of architects . Only this official award allows you to become self-employed as a city and spatial planner or to enter the higher public service. A master’s degree is required for this.
In the master’s program, students deepen the knowledge acquired in the bachelor’s degree and can specialize in individual areas of urban and spatial planning. Depending on the university, subject areas such as real estate management or environmental protection are offered as main subjects. In study projects, students can directly apply the knowledge they have learned in practice.
Career prospects for urban and spatial planners
In later professional life, skills such as communication skills and negotiating skills play a major role when it comes to negotiating the interests of many different groups.
Most of the graduates of the Urban and Spatial Planning course are later employed in the public sector. You plan districts or entire regions and always have legal and economic issues in mind. Employers are, for example, city planning offices, regional and local associations or district administrations.
Masters graduates are entitled to take on positions in the higher public service. Urban and spatial planners are not only employed at the municipal level, but can also find employment with federal and state authorities and international organizations .
In the private sector
In addition to the public service, employment in the private sector is also possible. Many urban and spatial planners work in architecture or planning offices or become self-employed. Real estate and residential construction companies also employ urban and spatial planners.
In addition to their classic work areas, urban and spatial planners can also be entrusted with other fields of work, such as the planning of traffic and infrastructure or energy supply . Master’s graduates also have the opportunity to pursue a scientific career and go into university research and teaching.
Study urban and spatial planning globally
If you want to take advantage of the opportunity to acquire important additional qualifications during your studies, you should think about studying one or more semesters abroad. This opens up the possibility of getting to know completely different conditions and approaches to urban and spatial planning .
In addition to expanding technical knowledge, foreign language skills are also improved and welcome intercultural competencies and soft skills are collected. For example, you learn to work in international teams and react flexibly to new situations. Studying abroad is also helpful for training the communication skills of urban and spatial planners.