RE3CIP-Comparative International Planning

Module Provider: Real Estate and Planning
Number of credits: 10 [5 ECTS credits]
Terms in which taught: Autumn term module
Non-modular pre-requisites:
Modules excluded:
Current from: 2022/3

Module Convenor: Prof Angelique Chettiparambil Rajan

Type of module:

Summary module description:

The appreciation of issues and approaches to spatial planning in different countries, regions or provinces is an important part of learning and understanding the different contexts in which planning has evolved. The history and context of a place has shaped the different tools, techniques and impacts of planning. This module provides an opportunity at undergraduate level to explore varying contexts around the world. The module also introduces different themes that planning is often concerned with and discusses how planning might make a difference to issues found in various contexts.

This module is delivered at the University of Reading only.


The aim of this module is to understand planning practices and systems in different countries and draw lessons from them. It sets the context, history and development of planning in a given country, region or state and then explores that system through particular themes/tools/techniques that operate within the system. This provides an opportunity to develop a global view of how planning is practiced and the advantages and problems of different systems set against their political, economic, social and cultural context. By also discussing different themes in planning, the module allows for an appreciation of the versatility of planning in contributing to resolving various economic, social, environmental and cultural issues.

Assessable learning outcomes:

By the end of the module it is expected that the student will be able to:

  • Apply theories of lesson drawing; 

  • Identify the historic, cultural and political constraints and enablers that shape different planning systems; 

  • Evaluate how particular tools/techniques and themes operate within a particular context;

  • Develop online discussion skills;

  • Refine essay writing skills.

Additional outcomes:

  • Increased global awareness 

  • Increased cross-cultural understanding

  • Appreciation of the diversity of planning challenges

Outline content:

The lectures will be delivered by a combination of University of Reading staff and guest lecturers who are experts on different planning approaches across the world. The initial session will be lecture-based and will set the scene by explaining the theory and practice of comparative studies and lesson drawing. This will be followed by lectures on planning systems in different countries and presentation of specific themes/tools/techniques that are illustrated through case studies from the countries being studied.

Given the nature of the module aims, the content may alter from year to year. The core aims and outcomes will however be maintained. The following list is indicative:

  • Introduction: comparative planning and lesson drawing 

  • Planning in India and bottom-up planning 

  • Planning in Ghana and land management 

  • Planning in Sri Lanka and the dark side of planning  

  • Planning in the Netherlands and water management 

  • Planning in Ireland and post economic crises  

  • Planning in Japan and property rights 

  • Planning in the US and the management of sustainability 

  • Planning in China and regional planning 

  • Optional: Tutorials on essay plan

Global context:

This module is entirely situated within a global context. The lectures and assessments require students to develop global awareness. Speakers from national backgrounds that mirror the content of the module normally deliver the lectures.

Brief description of teaching and learning methods:

The teaching and learning method for the module will be one of blended learning. This will involve a mixture of two hours of case study-based lectures each week supplemented by student contributions to an online discussion forum each week. The forum contributions will discuss and debate the planning system and the themes/tools and techniques discussed within lectures in a particular week alongside prescribed readings.

Contact hours:
  Autumn Spring Summer
Lectures 18
Tutorials 2
Guided independent study:      
    Wider reading (independent) 14 10
    Wider reading (directed) 8
    Other 8
    Essay preparation 10 30
Total hours by term 60 40 0
Total hours for module 100

Summative Assessment Methods:
Method Percentage
Written assignment including essay 75
Set exercise 25

Summative assessment- Examinations:

Summative assessment- Coursework and in-class tests:

The summative assessment is:

  1. Contributions by way of post(s) to a discussion board every week for 8 weeks (25% weight).

  2. An end-of-module essay. The guide length for the essay is 1,750 words and is due by week 3 of Spring term. The end-of-module essay carries 75% weight.

Formative assessment methods:


Penalties for late submission:

The Support Centres will apply the following penalties for work submitted late:

  • where the piece of work is submitted after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): 10% of the total marks available for that piece of work will be deducted from the mark for each working day (or part thereof) following the deadline up to a total of five working days;
  • where the piece of work is submitted more than five working days after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): a mark of zero will be recorded.
The University policy statement on penalties for late submission can be found at:
You are strongly advised to ensure that coursework is submitted by the relevant deadline. You should note that it is advisable to submit work in an unfinished state rather than to fail to submit any work.

Assessment requirements for a pass:
An overall mark of at least 40%.

Reassessment arrangements:
Reassessment will be by the same method as for the module’s original assessment requirements, subject to variation by the Examination Board where appropriate.

Additional Costs (specified where applicable):

Last updated: 22 September 2022


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