UTM Johor Bahru – The Department of Urban and Regional Planning, Faculty of Built Environment, Universiti Teknologi Malaysia (UTM), together with the Asian Planning Schools Association (APSA), successfully organised the 13th International Congress of Asian Planning Schools Association (APSA 2015) on 12-14 August 2015.

Through APSA 2015, UTM leads the way towards formulating an Asian Urban Agenda that will guide planning education and practice in Asia into the 21st Century.  This is  crucial especially in anticipation of the unique and unprecedented diversity, intensity, complexity and authenticity issues of urbanisation in Asia. Hence the Congress theme: Towards an Asian Urban Agenda: Planning Asian DiverseCITY, IntenseCITY, ComplexCITY and AuthenticCITY.

APSA 2015 assembled 250 international and local urban planning academics, researchers, practitioners and other related professions in UTM to intellectually and critically reflect upon the current state and future directions of Asian urbanisation and planning as Asian cities face increasing economic, social and environmental challenges globally, regionally and locally.

Three Keynotes and a good spread of 182 papers were presented over the two days.  146 papers (80%) were submitted by international participants from the UK, USA, Australia, Japan, South Korea, India, China, Taiwan, Singapore, Thailand and Indonesia among others.  This attests to the international and regional appeals of UTM as a platform for intellectual discourse on urban and regional planning.

Being a premier research university in Malaysia and the knowledge hub of the Skudai Innovation Valley that is strategically located in the rapidly growing Iskandar Malaysia region, UTM is the right venue for high intellectual value and high-impact events like the APSA International Congress.  The organisation of APSA 2015 is well in line with UTM’s long-term strategic plan to become one of the top 50 world universities in the field of engineering and technology by 2020.  Guided by the UTM Global Plan 2012-2020, UTM is committed to playing even more significant roles in contributing to a better Asia and a better world.