Copper’s Vice-Chair Linda Taylor and Director of Infrastructure and Major Projects Andrew Weaver spoke at RTPI’s PR, Communications and Planning event on Wednesday 23 January.

Joined by journalism, communication and planning experts, they discussed how effective communication can improve the delivery of planning in an ever-changing media environment.

In a first for the RTPI, the event looked at how the industry engages with communities and how the public react towards developments in their local area.

The presentations highlighted the importance of recognising how projects will impact people positively and negatively, and what it means for their lives. By understanding how planners and communities can work closer together, better schemes with a wider range of benefits can be delivered, improving the infrastructure and services the public already receive.

During the event, Linda showcased Copper’s own research about public perceptions towards housing and planning, identifying what makes housing developments acceptable to communities during the housing crisis. In addition, Andrew highlighted the importance of having a compelling narrative and spoke about his expertise as a professional planner in the communications industry.

Former RTPI President, Martin Willey said: “With an event such as this, there are hopes that it leads to the recognition for needing to secure communication skills during the planning process, either as planners who practice it or as planners who commission work”.