The Graduate Institute of Urban Planning in the National Taipei University was founded in 1968, and was Taiwan ‘s first postgraduate planning school. It is situated in the university’s postgraduate campus on Jian-Guo North Road in central Taipei , the first city of Taiwan and its political, economic and cultural capital. Currently the Institute has about 70 enrolled postgraduate students, with an annual intake of around 25 masters and 5 Ph.D. students. Although the Institute is happy to take well-qualified undergraduates from any first discipline, many of its applicants come from related first disciplines such as geography or other social sciences, land economics and undergraduate planning, and other built environment specialisms such as civil engineering, architecture and urban design, or landscape architecture.
The Institute offers two postgraduate planning-related programs at the present time, one a professional program at master’s level (2 year Master of Urban Planning), and the other a Ph.D. doctoral research program. Both programs are oriented towards learning more about spatial planning and management techniques, and have for many years enjoyed a fine reputation in Taiwan for their quality of teaching and their research training for varied careers in the planning profession, in both the public and private sectors.
The formal teaching program in the Institute runs for two semesters each year of study, from September to January (Semester 1) and from February to June (Semester 2). The taught program each weekday begins at 0910 and may go on into the evening, depending on which courses are chosen. Courses are assessed through both coursework and examinations.
Both programs have both compulsory and optional elements (see the individual links in this section for each program, and the Courses section of this website, for more detail on this), and the Institute is particularly renowned for its expertise in urban and regional development policy, environmental planning and management, transportation planning and urban design. The main aim of the postgraduate teaching is to give all students a rigorous, multi-disciplinary approach to planning knowledge and techniques, that will enable them to participate fully in the private and public policy-making that all regions and urban and rural areas face at times of rapid social, economic and environmental change. The programs, through the use of projects, problem-solving, field studies and thesis preparation alongside the more traditional lectures, are designed to enable students to develop their skills in critical analysis, evaluation and policy formulation in all areas of planning specailism that they choose to take.
As a result of the Institute’s expertise, many of the current planning policies and practices in Taiwan have resulted from consultations with the Institute’s faculty, or have actually been developed in the Institute over many years. The Institute is proud of its links between current Taiwanese practice and its ongoing teaching and research, and makes full use of these by bringing in current professional practitioners as part of its normal teaching program.