In an era of increasing complexity, the majority of local land-use decisions in the United States are made by volunteer citizen planners. Often these elected or appointed volunteers enter their positions with a passion for their communities but without appropriate background training. The Michigan Citizen Planner Program was developed to address this gap. The study described in this article investigated the self-assessed impacts on graduates of basic and advanced training. Findings suggest that training conducted as the result of collaboration by university Extension, other state agencies, and nonprofit groups is essential to realizing the positive community development impacts expected by citizens and local officials.
Beyea, W., Menon, R., & Crawford, P. (2016). Transforming the Knowledge Gap for Local Planning Officials: Impacts of Continuing Education in a Master Citizen Planner Program. Journal of Extension, 54(6), Article 26. https://tigerprints.clemson.edu/joe/vol54/iss6/26