Naivasha, Kenya, 25 September 2015– UN-Habitat through the Support to the Sustainable Urban Development Sector in Kenya Project (2012-2015) is supporting Urban Planning schools in Kenya to improve the quality of planning education. The support to planning schools is premised on the fact that Africa is the fastest growing continent and projections indicate that up to 60% of Africa will be urban by 2050 thereby creating the need to equip and prepare planning graduates with adequate knowledge and skills to be able to meet emerging and future challenges of urbanization.
In order to provide the above support, UN-Habitat has been cooperating with the planning schools under the auspices of the Association of African Planning Schools (AAPS), an umbrella association of Universities in Africa that provide training on Urban and Regional Planning. UN-Habitat further plans to develop a structured mechanism for engaging with each of the planning schools directly. The key output expected out of the cooperation is improved quality of planning education in Kenya.
As part of the cooperation, UN-Habitat facilitated a two day workshop at the Great Rift Valley Lodge in Naivasha from 16-18 September 2015. The primary objective of the workshop was to develop a framework for review of planning education curricula in Kenya. The Workshop was officially opened by the Government of Kenya represented by the Director of Physical Planning in the Ministry of Land Housing and Urban Development Mr. Augustine Masinde.
In attendance were representatives of planning schools in Kenya namely Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology (JKUAT), the University of Nairobi (UoN), Maseno University, Jaramogi Oginga Odinga University of Science and Technology, Egerton University, Pwani University, Technical University of Kenya, University of Eldoret, Technical University of Mombasa and Kenyatta University as well as the Commission for University Education (CUE), Architectural Association of Kenya (AAK), the Kenya Institute of Planners(KIP), Ministry of Devolution and Planning (MoDP) and a leading Practicing Planning firms.
The Director of Physical Planning who also chairs the Physical Planners Registration Board (PPPRB), the body regulating planning practice in Kenya, expressed optimism the cooperation would enable the curriculum to be reviewed in order to make graduates responsive to current and future urbanization challenges.