FIG Commission 8 - Spatial planning and development

Term 1999-2002

Highlights Commission Chair 1999-2002
Commission 8 tried to work on issues covering physical planning, the implementation of plans and land management in urban areas. Dipl.-Ing. Helmut Brackmann, Germany

After modernising the name of the commission from „Urban Land Systems: Planning and Developement“ into „Spatial planning and Developement“ at the congress in Melbourne commission 8 observes since the congress at Brighton 1998 an important movement to make the FIG commissions more responsible for cooperation with different United Nation agencies.

Within the last four years it couldn‘t succeed to build up something like a network for UN matters influenced by delegates or representatives of Commission 8. Commission 8 membership means only a very small group of people which is active in a continuously way and involved in such matters in their daily work.

By the end of December only more than 40 countries had appointed a delegate or only correspondent to the commission so that it is always a very small group of participants during the events of FIG and Commission 8.


The commission chair during the years 1998 and 2002 has been Helmut Brackmann, Deputy mayor in the City of Bottrop (Germany) and vice-chair Paul A.G. Lohmann, Holland Urban Institute B.V. (The Netherlands).

The commission 8 has had three working groups during the period 1998 – 2002 - one dealing with processes and procedures in Countries in transition, another dealing with Urban Regeneration and the third dealing with implementations of spatial planning by procedures of landmanagement and methods of public private partnership.

Since the congress at Brighton the commission 8 has held annual meetings in every year during the events of FIG. At each working week Commission 8 organized special technical sessions and commission 8 representatives also participated in several other conferences, symposia or professional meetings.

A newsletter 1999 about the planned activities of Commissions 8 in the years 1998 – 2002 combinded with a questionaire about the issues of the working group „Urban Regeneration“ got no answer.


Commission 8‘s activities have focused on regional and local structure planning, urban and rural land use planning, planning policies, environmental improvement and measurement procedures. Urban developement and regeneration of industrial areas in big cities have been other key issues and new aspects during the last years of commission acivities. It has been an interest in public private partnership (PPP) and informal settlements and problems of urbanisation and infrastructure in developing countries.

Within the four years of handling the existing workplan 1998 – 2002 commission 8 published more than 60 technical papers about these matters in the different events of the FIG.

In regard to the very small number of actually active delegates in this field of daily profession I thank these for their contributions and activities in the past. It shows the possibility and the most important role of an international organisation as FIG to organize a share holder value process in knowledge and experience exchange for it‘s member assossiations in a multinational and multipluralistic way.

Work Plan

Terms of Reference

  • Regional and local structure planning
  • Urban and rural land use planning
  • Planning policies and environmental improvement
  • Urban development and implementation
  • Public-private partnership
  • Informal settlements and urbanisation in developing countries
  • Environmental impact assessments.

Mission Statement

  • Focus on physical planning at all levels, undertake and learn from case studies and enhance understanding and knowledge of planning systems. The importance of sustainable development, environmental issues in planning and environmental impact assessments (EIA) in spatial planning procedures will be key issues throughout the plan period.
  • Continue to co-operate with countries in social and economic transition, in eastern Europe and other parts of the world.
  • Assist with the implementation of Agenda 21 (from the Rio Earth Summit) and the Global Plan of Action (from the HABITAT II conference in Istanbul) at the local and urban level. Pay particular attention to informal settlements and urbanisation problems in developing countries.
  • Focus on implementation problems, especially in inner city areas, and on public/private partnership and other tools that promote planned and sustainable land use development.

Work Plan

Key Documents




Working Groups

Working Group 8.1 - Urban regeneration

Policy issues

  • Inner cities and the regeneration of established urban areas.
  • Determination of the extent to which methods used to solve a particular problem might be successfully applied elsewhere.


Paul Lohmann, Netherlands

Working Group 8.2 - Surveyors and EIA

Policy issues

  • Promote sustainable development and environmental issues in spatial planning.
  • Deliver knowledge to developing countries and countries in transition.


Working Group 8.3 - Global urbanisation process and mega cities

Policy issues

Global urbanisation problems and processes and the special problems of mega cities including informal settlements.