Update from the Tribal and Indigenous Planners Interest Group of APA

 Photo was taken by hotel staff. Credit to Pablo Lituma for the picture and edit.

Photo was taken by hotel staff. Credit to Pablo Lituma for the picture and edit.

The Tribal and Indigenous Planners Interest Group of APA met during the national conference in New Orleans. Part of the conversation included efforts to create a Tribal and Indigenous Division of APA, establishing tribal planning related topics for APA future sessions, and building interest in professional planning degrees for undergraduate students. Please contact Sherwin Racehorse at sracehorse@sbtribes.com for further details.

The Tribal Planning Interest Group of APA, the American Planning Association, and the Western Planning Resources/The Western Planner are co-hosting a conference being held Aug. 5-8 in Fort Hall, Idaho. The theme for the 2018 Tribal Planning and Western Planner Conference is “Building Partnerships through Understanding, Cooperation and Consultation.” There are many partnerships to be developed in planning efforts. Often, Indian Tribal Governments are misunderstood in planning for regional solutions, for example, involving coordinating tribal projects with local and state government transportation improvements can be a daunting task. Regional planning efforts, such as a Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy, or comprehensive planning processes, involve creation of regional steering committees to conduct Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats (SWOT) analyses, or contribute to the discussion of what socio-economic development is needed for a region and/or state. A shared understanding of tribal, but also rural, small town planning is often missing from these conversations. Partnerships between tribes, rural/small communities and their regional, state and federal partners, including collective evaluation of needs and opportunities, are critical to improving quality of life in our communities. At the August conference, we anticipate a dialogue that provides much needed alternative to urban/big city planning, including the legal, political and social frameworks of planning on and off Indian Reservations. Read more about the conference