Transportation Planning Division Student Paper Competition

Call for Papers

Deadline: Wednesday, January 25, 2017, at 12 p.m. (noon) CST

The Transportation Planning Division (TPD) is looking for outstanding student papers on current transportation planning or policy issues. The purpose is to recognize and reward work completed for courses in accredited graduate planning programs. Please nominate and encourage your students to participate in the contest. Winners will be announced at the APA National Planning Conference in New York City, May 6–9, 2017.


Awards will be given as follows for the three best papers:

  • Grand prize — $1,000
  • Second place — $750
  • Third place — $500

Winning papers (or summaries) will be published in the TPD's quarterly newsletter. The Division may also submit full versions of the winning paper for possible publication in APA's Planning magazine.

Criteria for Submission

  1. Papers must have been originally written by a single author for a class in a PAB-accredited graduate planning program during calendar years 2015 or 2016. The program chair, a faculty member, or the AICP liaison must nominate a paper by forwarding it to Students may not nominate their own paper and doctoral students are not eligible for this award.
  2. Each accredited program may submit a maximum of two papers.
  3. Exclusions: A paper may be submitted only once; papers may not be revised and resubmitted in a subsequent year. Master's theses, terminal professional reports, internship projects, and student group projects are not eligible.

Instructions for Submission

  1. No more than 25 pages, including an abstract (no more than 250 words), tables, maps, other diagrams, and references.
  2. Double-spaced, one inch margins, minimum 12-point font.
  3. Title page must be a separate document that includes student name, address, phone number, school and degree program, course title, and date when paper was originally submitted.
  4. Headers and/or footers should only contain the paper title and page number. Name and/or other identifying information is to be omitted from the body of the paper.
  5. Send papers to: Laurel Land at Papers will be accepted only via e-mail; PDF format is preferred. Submission should include two documents: (1) title page; and (2) paper.
  6. The deadline for receipt of the papers is Wednesday, January 25, 2017, at 12:00 p.m. (noon) CST. No late papers will be accepted.
  7. Contestants are highly encouraged to join the TPD.


A subcommittee of planning faculty and practitioners will read all papers using blind review. Papers will be judged on:

  1. Relevance to major current issues in transportation planning or policy
  2. Insight and significance of discussion
  3. Quality of the writing, argument, and documentation.

Previous Winners

View Previous Winners