About Us

The Planning Accreditation Board (PAB) accredits university programs in North America leading to bachelor’s and master’s degrees in planning. The accreditation process is based on standards approved by the PAB with input from the public and our sponsoring organizations: the American Planning Association (APA); the American Institute of Certified Planners (AICP) (the professional planners’ institute within the American Planning Association); and the Association of Collegiate Schools of Planning (ACSP).

Message From the Chair

Greetings! I’m very pleased to chair the Planning Accreditation Board (as of Dec 1, 2018). Let me begin this message by sincerely thanking our past chair, Bruce Knight. Bruce led us through the past two years of achievements and launched us on the first year of our 5-year Strategic Plan. Before looking ahead, let’s review our many accomplishments of the past year.

Under Bruce’s leadership, we continued our routine responsibilities and pushed ahead into new areas, implementing the goals articulated in our updated 5-year Strategic Plan (see below). At our spring meeting in New Orleans, the Board reviewed and granted reaccreditation to ten programs. At our fall meeting in Buffalo, the Board granted accreditation to eight additional programs and candidacy status to two new program. ( A complete summary of PAB’s decision is available on the PAB website.

At the APA and ACSP conferences, our task force on Innovation and Communication in Planning Education hosted well-attended meetings, learning from practitioners and educators their views of innovation in planning, and the challenges and opportunities they see for adapting to our changing world. The final report of this task force is expected this spring. The Site Visitor Committee continued to expand the Site Visitors Pool and the Standards Committee created a guide to assist Site Visit Teams in assessing the curriculum criteria. The Board and staff also continued to work with programs and our consultant on the newly implemented online JURA system.

Looking ahead to the next year, the Board will continue to fulfill the goals of our 2017 – 2022 Strategic Plan. As a quick reminder, in 2017, the Board developed and approved the mission statement and goals as follows:

Mission Statement: The Planning Accreditation Board’s Mission is to promote excellence among planning programs and to ensure high quality education for future urban planners.


  1. Support and encourage programs to commit to student learning and programmatic outcomes assessment.
  2. Promote and encourage a systemic approach to diversity and multi-cultural understanding in each planning program.
  3. Promote and encourage a culture of innovation in program content and delivery.
  4. Enhance data collection, analysis, and dissemination regarding planning programs and planning education.
  5. Advance the collaborative relationship with the sponsoring organizations to promote the profession and the academy.
  6. Communicate the value of accreditation to all constituents.
  7. Maintain efficient, relevant and effective operational procedures.

Our overall intent is to strengthen our contribution to the collective goals of the planning profession and educational programs. In particular, we aim to continue to clarify what innovation in planning means as we approach the third decade of the new millennia. Most importantly, we will work together with our partner organizations to articulate the value of planning and the value of accreditation to the academy and to professional practice.

Connie Ozawa, Ph.D.
PAB Chair
Portland State University
ACSP Planning Educator appointee 2014 – 2020

January 10, 2019

PAB Fall 2018 Report to Sponsoring Organizations

Board Members 2018 - 2019

Need More Information?

Contact PAB

Planning Accreditation Board
2334 W. Lawrence Avenue – Suite 209
Chicago, IL 60625

Ms. Jesmarie Soto Johnson
Executive Director
Telephone: 773.334.7200
Email: jjohnson@planningaccreditationboard.org

Ms. Jaclyn Hade
Associate Director
Telephone: 773.334.7210
Email: jhade@planningaccreditationboard.org