OPR Publishes its First Planning Research Framework and Programme

The Office of the Planning Regulator (OPR) has published its first Planning Research Framework and the accompanying Strategic Planning Research Programme.

One of the statutory functions of the OPR is to conduct planning research and to inform professional and public engagement on the planning process. The Planning Research Framework lays out a structure to advance this objective through the two-year programme.

The goal of the Framework is to address existing gaps in planning theory and practice, support best practice in the planning system, facilitate greater public understanding and develop the necessary tools for practitioners and researchers.

The Framework’s objectives are grounded in the core principles of advancing sustainable development (including the UN Sustainable Development Goals), promoting practical implementation of government’s policies including those on climate action and supporting the measures in the National Planning Framework (NPF).

Specifically, the Framework sets out three separate strands; planning issues, planning performance and planning practice. Each strand’s research projects will be delivered through various mechanisms including directed and commissioned work, partnerships and contributor roles.

The Framework has been published in conjunction with the Strategic Planning Research Programme which outlines the specific research projects scheduled over the next two years.

Both the Research Framework and Programme have been informed by consultation with our stakeholders and with the National Planning Knowledge Group (NPKG). The NPKG was established by the OPR as a forum for information exchange and engagement with a broad group of interests in both research, policy and practice.

Planning Research Framework

Strategic Planning Research Programme