Urban Planning & Development

Executive Search & Leadership Advisory

Urban planning is one of the most pressing issues that the world grapples with in today’s environment, where more than half of the global population lives in cities. To make things even more complex for urban policymakers, there are issues of climate change, resource depletion, loss of biodiversity, and increased pollution to overcome. The severity and complexity of the problem has compelled policy makers to invest time, efforts, and money into finding new, more sustainable ways of urban planning and development.

In an era of globalization, urban policymakers are putting special emphasis on building cohesive cities where everybody is welcomed and their integrity is respected.  As a result, many developed countries are striving to establish carefully planned urban communities that provide affordable housing to people with varying lifestyles.

Modernization of living spaces is another approach that is being used by various governments to improve quality of life, as well as energy efficiency of residential buildings for long-term sustainability. According to a report published by the European Union, ninety percent of social housing buildings are in need of refurbishment, most having low energy efficiency[1]. Upgrading the existing housing stock presents a cost-effective urban planning and development opportunity that governments with poor resources might consider.

The concept of smart cities has also emerged as a promising option for urban policymakers who are seeking ways to effective deal with sustainability objectives. Technologies like Big Data, Internet of Things, Cloud Computing, and social media have already found their application in some of the most important aspects of urban planning and development, including land use and spatial planning, traffic management, and solid-waste management[2].

Regardless of the planning and development approach, governance is critical to establish an urban culture of sustainability. Since the local government is the closest governing body to people, many countries are providing decision-making privileges to local authorities, as well as financing to support these decisions. This has helped ensure effective implementation of sustainable development policies related to urban infrastructure, utilities, land use, and mobility planning.

many public institutions responsible for sustainable urbanization do not have the right skill set and resources available to address the problem and produce a long-term solution.

At Allen Austin, we understand the multidimensional challenges faced by urban policymakers when it comes to sustainable and cost-effective urban planning and development.  We provide outcome-oriented leadership development and executive search solutions that focus on helping both public and private institutions find the right executive-level talent that has the vision, skills, and experience required to achieve sustainability and cost-efficiency goals.

[1] Cities of Tomorrow: Challenges, Visions, Ways Forward, European Union http://ec.europa.eu/regional_policy/sources/docgener/studies/pdf/citiesoftomorrow/citiesoftomorrow_final.pdf

[2] Science, Technology Key Elements of Sustainable Urbanization, Citiscope.org http://citiscope.org/habitatIII/news/2015/05/science-technology-key-elements-sustainable-urbanization