Please note! Course description is confirmed for two academic years, which means that in general, e.g. Learning outcomes, assessment methods and key content stays unchanged. However, via course syllabus, it is possible to specify or change the course execution in each realization of the course, such as how the contact sessions are organized, assessment methods weighted or materials used.


During the course the student:

  • Reflects his/her personal attitudes towards participatory planning and which approaches she/he finds most useful
  • Learns to understands the meaning of participation in the various phases of planning process and in relation to societal and political context and decision making processes.
  • Can recognize and name various theoretical and practical approaches in the multifaceted field of participatory planning
  • Learns to know a variety of participation methods including digital tools and e-participation and will test some of them.

Credits: 5

Schedule: 24.02.2025 - 09.04.2025

Teacher in charge (valid for whole curriculum period):

Teacher in charge (applies in this implementation): Marketta Kyttä-Pirjola

Contact information for the course (applies in this implementation):

CEFR level (valid for whole curriculum period):

Language of instruction and studies (applies in this implementation):

Teaching language: English. Languages of study attainment: English


  • valid for whole curriculum period:

    During the course, the student will be introduced participatory planning as a multifaceted, sometimes contested field with various approaches, ideals and methodologies. These approaches have evolved during the (rather short) history of participatory planning. The varying viewpoint concern for example:

    • How participation is organized? Participatory planning can be formally organized but also informal, self-organized activity.Who are the participants? The participants can be either organized groups or randomly selected individuals.
    • What kind of knowledge participatory planning produces? The knowledge produced in participatory planning process can be both generalizable and scientific or specific and local.
    • What is the focus of participatory planning? The focus of participatory planning can be on the process or on the outcome. The scale of participatory planning can be the master plan level or detailed plan level.
    • Which methods should/can be used in participatory planning? There is an abundance of available methods for participatory planning, both more traditional and methods applying new technology.
    • What is the role of participatory planning in planner's identity and in planning profession? Planning can be seen both as a closed profession and as deliberative planning the role of participation varies accordingly.
    • When participatory planning should be applied? There are various views about when participatory planning is most useful, important and influential.

Assessment Methods and Criteria
  • valid for whole curriculum period:

    The course will be assessed with the scale 0-5. The score is calculated based on the following rules:

    • 10 % individual reflections
    • 10 % active participation in classes
    • 80 % individual course assignment

  • valid for whole curriculum period:

    Detailed description of workload:

    Lectures & discussions 26 h (13 x 2 h)
    Methodological exercises 6 h
    Reading and reflection 63 h
    Writing 20 h
    Total 135 h


Substitutes for Courses
SDG: Sustainable Development Goals

    10 Reduced Inequality

    11 Sustainable Cities and Communities

    17 Partnerships for the Goals


Further Information
  • valid for whole curriculum period:

    Teaching Language: English

    Teaching Period: 2024-2025 Spring IV
    2025-2026 Spring IV


    Registration for courses will take place on Sisu ( Students of the Master's programme in Spatial Planning and Transportation Engineering are prioritized. The maximum number of students is 60.