On Wednesday 26th September, The Planner – in association with the developers of the community engagement platform Commonplace (www.commonplace.is) – will debate the best ways in which planners can manage truly effective consultation processes. The discussion will take place during an hour-long live webinar, to be broadcast at 12:00 midday.
The newly revised National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) makes much of the value in meaningful, ‘effective’ engagement. But in 2018, what does – and should – ‘effective engagement’ really involve? How can local participation be made genuinely easy for all? Our studio guests will consider the application of the word ‘effective’ in planning policy and the potential for its misuse or misinterpretation, before going on to discuss the merit and evolving impact of IT on the ways in which we consult and engage in 2018. We’ll also be asking our listening audience for their questions and opinions as the event progresses.
Over the course of an hour-long broadcast, we’ll ask:
• Just how effective is the word ‘effective’? What issues of interpretation does its use typically cause? We’ll be including a legal perspective on the issue.
• How is community engagement evolving? What influences are social, demographic and technological changes having on the process?
• What impact are new forms of analysis such as sentiment mapping having on results of consultation exercises?
• To what extent is handheld technology redefining how we democratise the consultation process?• What do people still get wrong about the fundamentals of engagement?


Martyn Evans

Non-Executive director, Commonplace

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Martyn has twenty years experience in the property business, challenging the system to make a difference by emphasising people, life and places ahead of bricks, mortar, glass and steel. A non-exec director at Commonplace, Martyn is also the estate development director at Darlington hall, deputy chair of the London Festival of Architecture and founder of the Young Architects and Developers Alliance.


Ross O'Ceallaigh

Urban Design and Planning Consultant

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Ross is an Urban Design and Planning Consultant with Urban Initiatives Studio, based in London. He has experience conducting public engagement in Nigeria and the UK and is interested in the potential for technology to make planning more inclusive and proactive.

Sue Manns

Sue Manns Associates

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A fellow of the RTPI, Sue Manns is standing for the institute’s vice-presidency and works as consultation and engagement specialist leader, providing expertise and guidance to public and private sector clients on the delivery of good public engagement in the planning system. She’s also been a project leader for a range of major commercial, residential and infrastructure projects. Sue will be one of our interviewees during the event.


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