The School

The School of Community and Regional Planning at UBC was one of the first dedicated planning schools in Canada. Founded in 1951, we have over six decades of experience in graduate planning education and research. We work, live and play in one of the most scenic urban settings in the world. Vancouver is home to a culture of environmentalism and pluralism with a long history of activism and action. It is also home to formidable socio-economic problems in the Downtown Eastside and elsewhere. Our work is endlessly challenging and there is no shortage of both issues to tackle, and inspiration to draw from, in our lively and dynamic city.

SCARP pioneered the integrated approach to planning for development. Our Masters degrees have long been accredited by the Canadian Institute of Planners and the American Institute of Certified Planners. We are an associate member of the Association of Collegiate Schools of Planning. Information on Planning Schools, Planning Education & Planning Careers can be found in the ACSP's Guide to Undergraduate & Graduate Education In Urban & Regional Planning.

SCARP benefits from a strong relationship with the Planning Institute of British Columbia and the Canadian Institute of Planners. The affiliation includes reciprocal institutional development, faculty membership and student mentorship.

As one of the largest graduate planning programs in Canada, SCARP has 15 faculty and over 100 students. Our teaching program is characterized by both diversity and integration. We are small enough that students and faculty are able to enjoy regular one-on-one contact.


 Winner of the 2014 'What Is Planning?' Video Contest - by Master's student Malcolm MacLean



SCARP faculty are broadly experienced in teaching and professional practice. Moreover, all full time members are actively engaged in research and publication which raises the level of scholarly, professional and popular debate on key public policy and planning issues.


The School accepts students from a wide variety of disciplines ranging from planning, geography, and forestry, to business, political science, and economics. Students come from across Canada and around the world. In recent years students have come from Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, Egypt, Ghana, Great Britain, India, Indonesia, Iran, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Nigeria, Pakistan, South Africa, Switzerland, Thailand, and the United States.

SCARP students have their own Planning Students Association funded in part by a modest student fee. Students are represented on the School's Management Committee and the Council of the provincial professional association of planners (the Planning Institute of B.C.); and they participate in local, national and international conferences and sponsor many academic and social activities.


Faculty offices and the School's classrooms are located in the Lasserre building and in the West Mall Annex, which is also the location of our Centre for Human Settlements. The West Mall Annex houses study space for students, a reading room, a student lounge and kitchen, computer labs, a classroom, a resource room and a seminar room. The School has library space within the Music, Art and Architecture Library in the university's Irving K. Barber Learning Centre, as well as the online Community & Regional Planning Research Guide and its own librarian. 

Affiliated Centres

Members of the SCARP community benefit from interdisciplinary collaborations with faculty, research associates and students from a number of centres and institutes across the UBC campus. Our affiliations range from cross appointments for faculty to partnership on major grants to interdisciplinary research supervision and teaching.

Institute for Resources Environment and Sustainability

The Social Justice Institute

School of Architecture and Landscape Architecture

Institute of Asian Research


SCARP is a department within the Faculty of Applied Science.