John Punter has wide interests in contemporary urbanism and especially aspects of urban planning, urban form, urban design, and architecture. He has been working for thirty years on aspects of design control and the design dimension of planning, and this has included major studies in British cities, Wales, Europe, the USA and Canada, and most recently in Australia.
He is also interested in all aspects of contemporary planning practice and in comparative analysis of planning systems, having completed such studies of France, USA, Canada and Australia.
Professor Punter is now a part-time Professor in Urban Design. He continues to teach two modules on MA Urban Design, is Chair of the Steering Group for the Bristol Urban Design Forum (2010-) and continues to serve on the Design Review Panel of the Design Commission for Wales.
Other interests include travel, photography, mountain and city walking.
Undergraduate, BA Geography, University of Newcastle upon Tyne (1964 - 1967)
Postgraduate, MA, PhD Geography with planning urban design element, University of Toronto, Canada (1967 - 74)
Member of the RTPI (1990)
Elected Friend of the Royal Society of Architects in Wales (2002)
Elected Academician of the Social Sciences (2003)
John Punter has taught in Urban Studies at York University, Toronto (1972-5), Planning and Land Management and Development at Reading University (1975-1993), and in Environmental Planning at Strathclyde University in Glasgow (1993-1996). He was Professor and Head of the Department of Environmental Planning at the University of Strathclyde, before becoming Professor of Urban Design at Cardiff in 1996. He became a member of the UDG in 1985 and the RTPI in 1990.
He was a Visiting Professor at Curtin University in Perth and at University of New South Wales in Sydney, Australia in 2002. He is a member of the Urban Design Group, a founder member of the Academy of Learned Societies for the Social Sciences and an Honorary Friend of the Royal Society of Architects in Wales. He was a Director of the Design Commission for Wales and Chair of its Design Review Panel 2002-2012. He was appointed Chair of the Town and Country Planning Panel for the HEFCE Research Assessment Exercise in 2001 and again in 2008.
He has undertaken a range of consultancy work for the OECD in Paris, Reading Borough Council, Comedia, Urban Cultures, Hillier Parker, David Lock Associates, the Welsh Development Agency and Cardiff Council. He has been an external examiner of planning courses at five British planning schools and two postgraduate urban design courses, and numerous doctorates.
Memberships / External Activities
John Punter is a member of the Urban Design Group and a Director of the Design Commission for Wales until completing his ten year term in 2012. He is one of the Chairs of the Design Review Panel and is heavily involved in design training with Welsh Local Planning Authorities and other development and planning agencies.
He contributed to the DETR advice By Design, the UDG advice on Design Guidance, and the RTPI advice on design policies in development plans (From Design Policy to Design Quality). He is on the Editorial Board of five planning, urban design and property journals (TPR, JUD, UDI, JPR, IPS) and has guest edited for four more journals. He has served on the RIBA’s Planning Panel, the former ODPM's Planning Research Network, as a Board Member of Resources for Urban Design Information (RUDI), CABE's Research Reference Group and the RTPI Urban Design Network Steering Group.
Urban Design Thinkers (MA UD)
Design Guidance and Control (MA UD)
and he contributes to other modules on Comparative Planning Practice and the Urban Design Studios.
He is currently working on the new edition of Design Review in Wales distilling the experience of reviewing well over 250 projects over the period September 2007 to December 2011. The report will be published in November.
His most recent research project was preparing a book on Urban Design and the British Urban Renaissance. This was a collaboration with 15 other leading urban design academics in the UK and proceeded in conjunction with an ESRC Seminar series of the same title with two day seminars in Cardiff, Manchester, Glasgow and London with local practitioners, planners and amenity interests.
Other Research Projects
He has completed a series of research projects on aspects of design control, European planning and property development, funded by the DoE, ESRC and various property consultancies. His major recent projects have included:
ESRC Seminar Series 2007-9: Urban Design and the British Urban Renaissance.
Cardiff Council 2004-5: Cardiff 1974 – 2005: rebirth of a city.
Various small research projects for China Academy of Urban Planning and Design 2003-4 in Suzhou (design policy), Zhenjiang (eco-development) and Xiamen (conservation).
Welsh Development Agency 2000-2: Welsh Design Guidance.
Canadian High Commission 1998-2000: The design dimension of planning in Toronto and Vancouver, Canada.
ESRC 1996-8: Design appeals in England - incidence, substance, decisions and policy references.
ESRC/DoE 1993-6: Design in Development Plans.