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The Tufts University Intercultural Planning Group (IPG) is a student group based out of the Urban Environment Policy and Planning (UEP) department with the aim to learn to become more socially and culturally competent, to build knowledge, and bring people together to talk about questions such as “What does socially and culturally competent planning look like? How can planners engage in culturally competent practice? and How can planners promote equity in a meaningful and practical way?”


ICP is composed of UEP students who envision urban planning students celebrating diversity in planning and taking part in forming communities where diversity is celebrated and where a variety of cultures, classes, and ethnicity form a mosaic of prosperous communities. Towards this end, ICP works to promote opportunities for developing cultural competency in the planning field.

The Purpose of the Tufts Intercultural Practice Group is to sponsor events and discussions for the Urban and Environmental Policy and Planning Department and wider community that examine the role of the planner and policy maker in fostering intercultural communities. The membership aims to create a learning community that builds knowledge, brings people together, and critically examines issues like equity and cultural competence and their relevance and implications for policy and planning practice.  Events and discussions will involve guest practitioners or expertly researched opinions, i.e. practicing planners and community development professionals or published articles, who/which will help foster debate around the challenges of planning for the intercultural city. 

Objectives

  • To create dialogue among practicing and aspiring planners and policy makers regarding the strategies that foster equity in planning
  • To provide planning students with an opportunity to interact with seasoned planning and policy professionals who are working in diverse communities
  • To raise awareness about the concept of planning for the intercultural city, versus the multicultural city
  • To connect discourses regarding the nuances of planning and setting policy in the diverse communities of the U.S. to planning in other parts of the world

Our Goals

 

1. Self-learning 

·         Create a community of inquiry to teach ourselves and the UEP community about culturally competent and participatory practice.

o    Provide opportunities for learning about our own cultural backgrounds, and those of our classmates.

o    Provide opportunities for honest reflection and feedback among our group and the UEP community about cultural competency, racism, and oppression.

o    Provide opportunities for learning about working in communities that are culturally similar or dissimilar to our own backgrounds (including challenges and opportunities for white planners and planners of color).

2. Connections 

·         Foster discussion at UEP on the role of the planner and policymaker on forming the intercultural space and promoting meaningful equity.  Include practicing planners, policymakers, community organizers, and community members (especially UEP alumni), in these discussion spaces.

·         Examine best practices from real world planning.

3. Advocacy

·         Provide opportunities for practicing planners to be reflective and improve their own culturally competency skills.

·         Increase the number of planners and policy makers from under-represented communities at UEP and in the profession.

·         Practice equitable planning and policy making.