The International Society of City and Regional Planners (ISOCARP) is a global association of experienced professional city and regional planners. ISOCARP was founded in 1965 in a bid to bring together recognised and highly-qualified planners in an international network.


Where are we over five decades later?

Today, our network brings together individual and institutional members from more than 85 countries worldwide. We are planners and other stakeholders involved in the development and maintenance of the built environment. As a non-governmental organisation ISOCARP is recognized by the United Nations (UN), the United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UNHCS/UN-HABITAT), and the Council of Europe. The Society also has a formal consultative status with the United Nations Education, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO).

Although ISOCARP members work in many different fields we all share a common interest in the spatial and environmental dimensions of urbanisation, advising key decision-makers, proposing and supporting projects for intervention in a spatial context through general or specific actions.

What are we doing?

The objectives of ISOCARP are to improve cities and territories through planning practice, training, education and research. ISOCARP promotes the planning profession in all its aspects. ISOCARP keeps its focus on being a politically and commercially independent network of professional planners. We have grown into a world-wide organisation but also kept a strong European emphasis.

The Society aims at becoming a more global organisation and is particularly looking for a stronger base in Asia, Latin America and Africa. However, it is also important to strengthen the traditional European base. The main tools of ISOCARP are the yearly congresses, symposia, workshops and publications.

Activate knowledge

The objectives of ISOCARP include the improvement of planning practice through the creation of a global and active network of practitioners. ISOCARP encourages the exchange of professional knowledge between planners, promotes the planning profession in all its forms, stimulates and improves planning research, training and education and enhances public awareness and understanding of major planning issues at a global level.

World Congress

The Society’s main event is the annual World Congress, which focuses on a globally-significant planning theme and which takes place in a different country each year. Prior to the congress Young Planning Professional Workshops are organized. This YPP programme seeks to bring together emerging young planning professionals from all over the world to tackle ‘real-world’ planning projects. Smaller-scale events such as seminars and working groups are also organized.

Publications and Awards

All ISOCARP activities are covered in publications such as the ISOCARP Review, the International Manual of Planning Practice (IMPP), Congress proceedings and special project reports.
ISOCARP recognises excellence through the Society’s award programme.

Urban Planning Advisory Teams

ISOCARP Urban Planning Advisory teams (UPATs) assist sponsor organizations by offering the extensive experience and expertise of ISOCARP members to work on important local or international planning projects, programs and policy initiatives.

Young Planning Professionals’ Programme

A particular focus and commitment of ISOCARP is on young generations through facilitating knowledge for better cities with the youth. The Young Planning Professionals’ Programme is a crucial component of ISOCARP’s dedication to promote and enhance the planning profession. The objective is to contribute to the knowledge base and improve skills of young professionals, the future leaders of our profession.

What are our Objectives?

  • Improvement of planning practice through the creation of a platform for the exchange between planners from different countries
  • Promotion of the planning profession in all its aspects, notably from the point of view of its identity, the services it can render, and the conditions required for it to function
  • Promotion of planning research
  • Improvement (in theory and practice) of planning education and training
  • Provision of information and advice on major planning issues

More details on further ISOCARP activities and the way how to join us are provided in the following ISOCARP brochure:


Board and Executive Committee

Board Members and their short bios

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Reform, restructuring and renewal

This has been a year of positive change for the International Society of City and Regional Planners. Please read the Board’s report to the Members — Progress, achievements and challenges Report from the ISOCARP Board to Members for the year 2018-2019 At the Special General Meeting during the World Planning Congress in Norway in 2018,…

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Scientific Committee

ISOCARP’s Scientific Committee keeps the Society at the forefront of professional thinking in planning.

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States of the Profession by ISOCARP Presidents

At the end of a presidential term (three years), the leaving President holds a State of the Profession speech which reflects on the professional role of the planner at the time of his/her presidency.

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Ways of Payment to ISOCARP

Bank transfer; Paypal; Credit Card; Bank cheque; Western Union & MoneyGram;

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ISOCARP has the ANBI-status in the Netherlands (Dutch for Algemeen nut beogende instelling (ANBI), English: Public benefit institution). This recognises that the organisation’s efforts are almost entirely committed to the public benefit.

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