Diversity, equity, and inclusion (DE&I) in the urban planning profession is a conscious approach toward creating meaningful diversity and understanding and actively working toward equity and inclusion within the planning field. How this looks in practice will vary, but the desired outcome is a workforce empowered to drive planning processes that help reduce the disparities that exist across communities — many of which are the legacies of long histories of segregation and social injustice.
The May-June 2019 issue of PAS Memo discusses the opportunities and challenges of making DE&I a regular and critical component of the urban planning profession. It explores the significance of DE&I in urban planning, shares the perspectives of planners on the subject, and offers practical ideas for planners to implement, including efforts by the American Planning Association (APA) to support this work.
About the Author
Kendra L. Smith, PhD, serves as the director of community engagement at the University of Houston, College of Medicine. She is the author of the 2019 ICMA report Beyond Compliance: Recruitment and Retention of Underrepresented Populations to Achieve Higher Positions in Local Government.