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2023 Annual Report

Creatively Courageous

Aaniin, Boozhoo! Ullakut! Hello, Bonjour!

CIP respectfully acknowledges our office is located on the unceded territory of the Anishinaabe Algonquin Nation. CIP values the ongoing stewardship of all First Nations, Inuit, and Métis peoples.

Letter from Our President, Dan Huang RPP, MCIP

It has been an honour serving as your CIP President for the past four years, along with a dedicated Board of Directors across all of our regions.

As an organization, we surpassed 9,000 members in 2023 and continue to grow while maintaining a solid financial footing. We are seeing strong participation in our conferences and webinars, scholarship and bursary opportunities, and other programs and initiatives. This includes a very successful 2023 CIP/API Conference in Halifax, for which I would like to thank all of the conference organizers, speakers, and volunteers for this achievement. Our many dedicated volunteers continue to support our planning ecosystem across the country as well as with our international partners. Volunteers are vital to the success of CIP, and I want to personally thank each and every one of you for your many contributions over the years.

We continue to make progress on our Strategic Plan and pathway towards “1,835 Days of Impact”. In Fall 2023, the Board made a commitment to fund three Diversity Impact Bursaries with the CIP/ICU Planning Student Trust Fund, to further equity, diversity, and inclusion, and help reduce financial barriers to the profession. We also launched “The Path: Your Journey Through Indigenous Canada”, an online Indigenous cultural awareness course developed by NVision, in order to assist CIP and our members along our journey towards reconciliation within the planning profession. All of our Board Directors, staff, and committee members have or are working towards completing the training, and we encourage all members to take the course as well. We recently provided 100 free enrolments to our members, which had rapid uptake.

During the Spring of 2024, CIP ramped up its efforts and advocacy on housing, which is one of the most significant multi-jurisdictional challenges facing our country and around the globe. We are collaborating closely with the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) and the federal government on a number of their initiatives, including the Housing Accelerator Fund, Pre-Approved Housing Designs, and other housing best practices. We are also meeting regularly with Planning Directors across Canada to discuss their challenges and successes in the housing space, as well as other planning topics and trends (e.g. Artificial Intelligence).

Throughout 2023 and 2024, there has been continued collaboration with our planning colleagues across the country including the various Provincial and Territorial Institutes and Associations (PTIAs) and the Professional Standards Boards (PSB). Following a pause to the update of the Competency Standards, the PTIAs and CIP worked with the PSB to develop a new framework whereby the standards-setting function would be relocated within the PSB, alongside member certification and university accreditation, with all three components organized under one governance structure. In addition, the PTIAs and CIP are committed to reviewing the current PLAR (Prior Learning Assessment and Recognition) and reciprocal agreements process, to assist in the shortage of planners and improve labour mobility.

I would like to take this time to especially thank all of our amazing and professional CIP staff, led by our CEO Beth McMahon. The staff team works closely with the Board and our members in order to keep our many programs and initiatives moving forward. I would also like thank all of my colleagues on the CIP Board during this past year, especially to those Directors whose current terms are expiring or are no longer on the Board – AJ Bimm, Doug Daniels, Ken Melanson, Daniel Mercer, and Adam Wright. Your contributions have been instrumental over the years getting things “back to normal” following the pandemic, as well as steering our profession towards the future guided by our Strategic Plan.

Finally, I would like to thank each and every one of you, our fellow CIP members and colleagues, and especially those that represent us on the “front lines” of the planning profession. The pace of change, especially with respect to housing policy and associated land use reforms, is unprecedented – even though we may have been asking for such reforms for decades! I am confident that our profession and those who work within it are best suited to address the various technical, social, and political elements in order to manage this rapid change in our communities. Thank you for your service to our profession and for working to help your communities become the best that they can be.

Respectfully Submitted,

Dan Huang, RPP, MCIP
CIP President

Letter from Our CEO, Beth McMahon

First, I would like to start this annual report with a very warm welcome to each of the 901 individuals who joined CIP this past year! Members are at the heart of our Institute, which is what makes 2023 so special, as we grew 11% and surpassed 9,000 members. It is also very uplifting to note the jump in membership satisfaction, now up to 87%. Reflecting on the past year, I wish to acknowledge the shared efforts and focus of our Board of Directors, volunteers, and staff team, to advance our Strategic Plan. Our hard work, combined with effective partnerships across the planning ecosystem, has really made a difference.

Here are a few highlights from 2023 that illustrate the impact that CIP is having:

  • To help further raise awareness of the profession and what it means to be MCIP®, as well as a Candidate, we created a microcredential program for our members – the first of its kind for the planning profession.
  • We developed a new resource, the CIP Planning Schools & Education Reference Guide, with listings for all Canadian universities with accredited planning programs (inclusive of PSB and OUQ accreditation), as well as information on accredited college planning technician programs. This resource continues our efforts to extend and promote free student membership in CIP, regardless of a student’s program or residency.
  • We stood up for planners, issuing a statement with the Provincial Territorial Institutes and Associations (PTIAs) that encouraged the public to learn more about the planning profession and planning concepts from reliable, fact-based sources.
  • In late 2023, we launched “The Path: Your Journey Through Indigenous Canada” to provide Indigenous cultural competency training to members (and non-members) in support of CIP’s national Policy on Planning Practice and Reconciliation.
  • In December 2023, CIP and the PTIAs released the results of the 2023 Canadian Professional Planners National Employment Survey Report, which included new insights into professional planning in a post-pandemic work environment.

Continuous Professional Learning (CPL) is central to the planning profession and with our new membership database system, we also automatically issued over 2,900 learning units to members throughout 2023. These credits were issued for a wide range of learning opportunities that CIP delivered:

  • We launched the Plan Canada webinar series, offering these four free webinars, as well as five additional free webinars throughout the year.
  • Our national conference, Navigation, was held with the Atlantic Planners Institute in Kjipuktuk (Halifax, NS), which welcomed 926 delegates in-person and online, including our Emerging Leaders Program participants. We talked about many important issues related to the past, present, and future, including Africville, housing, and strategic foresight. We also marched to the tune of bagpipes, took a harbour cruise, and some of you got some lovely new professional headshots.
  • Working with our partners at the American Planning Association (APA), CIP and APA jointly held the 2023 World Town Planning Online Conference, featuring 33 speakers from 16 countries – all for free – resulting in over 1,300 registrations, of which 434 were CIP members.

Finally, I’d like to note the new CIP website that launched in late 2023. I’m very proud of our entire staff team that invested so much time and thoughtfulness to create a public resource that elevates CIP’s Strategic Plan and priority areas of Climate Change, Healthy Communities, Housing, Reconciliation, Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion, as well as Career Support for Life, ensuring that our communications are clearer and that members and the public can more easily find key resources and information.

I can appreciate that it’s not always easy to see how and where your membership dollars are invested or to assess the impact they are having, but it’s my hope that in reading the 2023 Annual Report you will have a better understanding of the difference our Institute is making for individual members, as well as across the planning ecosystem. We are growing, we are thriving, and together, we are creating the future we wish to see for the planning profession.

Thank you for being a part of the Canadian Institute of Planners,

Beth McMahon, CEO

As of 2023, CIP is now 9,000+ members strong. This important milestone was made possible thanks to the loyalty of every member—past and present—who has placed their trust in CIP as the voice of Canada’s planning profession since 1919. Thank you, CIP members for your commitment, loyalty, service, and support of the Institute. We are strong because of you.

Congratulations New MCIPs

What Our Members Say

According to the 2023 membership survey, the most used member service was Plan Canada magazine.

Plan Canada is Canada’s national planning magazine, published quarterly by CIP with the editorial leadership provided by the Plan Canada Editorial Committee. The magazine is also our top-rated member service, valued for its high-quality, timely, relevant, and engaging planning-related content. It is available in an online, accessible format, as well as in hard copy, to all CIP members and magazine subscribers. 

In 2023, we introduced the popular Plan Canada webinar series. Authors from the most recent issue shared more insights from their articles and dived deeper into the theme, looking at the points of intersection and difference between their work. Each Plan Canada webinar was free for members and eligible as Continuous Professional Learning (CPL) units.

2023 Accomplishments: Focused Impact on Our Action Issues

December 31, 2023, marked 542 days since the launch of our Strategic Plan—1,835 Days of Impact.

Take a look at how CIP took meaningful action on our five action issues: Climate Change, Healthy Communities, Housing, Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion (EDI), and Reconciliation for members throughout the year.


  • CIP served on the Natural Resources Canada (NRCan) Adaptation Skills Working Group, working under Canada’s Climate Change Adaptation Platform and in support of the National Adaptation Strategy.



  • CIP President Dan Huang RPP, MCIP, and other CIP representatives participated in an Infrastructure Canada focus group to provide advice and feedback on a new National Climate Toolkit as a part of the National Adaptation Strategy response.


  • CIP and several members significantly contributed to the development of Natural Resources Canada’s Federal Land Use Guide for Flood Risk Areas, which provides guidance on land use planning with attention to flood-prone areas.


  • CIP partnered with the Climate Risk Institute (CRI) to host “Planners’ Toolkit: Climate Adaptation Resource Pathway”. This webinar provided an overview of the Adaptation Resource Pathway for Planners, which was developed by CRI and CIP with financial support from NRCan, and emphasized the role of planners in planning for and promoting community resilience.

Career Support for Life

National Planning Conference Navigation 2023
National Planning Conference Navigation 2023

CIP was proud to host Navigation 2023 in partnership with the Atlantic Planners Institute (API) in Halifax, NS, from June 27-30, 2023. 926 people participated online and in person. We were also pleased to have a full student conference program and the gathering of our first in-person Emerging Leaders Program cohort. We’re looking forward to growing our career support stream at CONNECTION in Edmonton from July 9-11, 2024.

Digital Badge Program
Digital Badge Program

CIP recognizes and celebrates planning career achievements at every stage, with our commitment to providing Career Support for Life. We are proud to amplify member achievements—as well as share information on how they were earned—through a digital badge program, supported by Credly and verified by CIP. Learn more about the digital badge program here.

Emerging Leaders Program
Emerging Leaders Program

The Emerging Leaders Program (ELP) is an interactive hybrid program for early-to-mid-career professionals that covers everything from goal setting to building professional relationships to self-care and stress management.

The program introduces skills and concepts related to meaningful leadership and provides opportunities for peer-to-peer network building and mentorship through online modules and a specialized program at our national planning conference.

In 2023, the program was highly competitive, attracting 99 applicants for 15 in-person openings.

National Employment Survey
National Employment Survey

On December 20, CIP and the PTIAs released the results of the Canadian Professional Planners National Employment Survey. In January, a free National Employment Survey Report webinar highlighted the results of the 2023 report, identified trends, and drew comparisons to the results from 2019. The webinar recording is available to all CIP members through the CPL HUB.

National Job Board
National Job Board

Over the past year, 280 job opportunities were published on the CIP National Job Board.

CIP continued to offer complimentary job postings for student and recent graduate positions to support the next generation of planners. In June, we also began offering complimentary job postings for those positions seeking Indigenous planners, related to an Indigenous project or community, or published by an Indigenous employer.

Professional Development
Professional Development

In 2023, CIP significantly expanded our career services offerings by establishing new professional development features at the national planning conference. This included the Professional Development Lounge, with free professional headshots and one-on-one resume clinics, as well as the Meet & Mentor workshop with the College of Fellows, a first-time delegates gathering, and career-related sessions for all employment stages. CIP extends its appreciation to Urban Systems for its support of the Professional Development Lounge.

Planning Schools and Education Reference Guide
Planning Schools and Education Reference Guide

CIP released our first edition of the CIP Planning Schools & Education Reference Guide. In the Guide, there are listings of all accredited university planning programs across Canada and learning opportunities that meet Continuous Professional Learning requirements. Information is also provided on getting into the profession, ethics, and employment trends.

Webinar Series
Webinar Series

Through our annual member survey, we know that free webinars and learning opportunities are a top priority for our members. In line with our strategic plan, the CIP team has focused on offering learning opportunities and tools related to our five action issues: climate change, healthy communities, housing, reconciliation, and equity, diversity, and inclusion.

Watch Webinar Recordings on the CPL HUB

The CPL HUB is accessible to all CIP members, on demand, with no additional fees. This centralized site includes recorded webinars and conference presentations, resources, and documents.

CPL Reporting

In 2023, CIP introduced a new Continuous Professional Learning (CPL) reporting tool that automatically assigns CPL units to members’ records who attend live events. As a result, CIP members have earned over 2,900 CPL units related to our action issues.

Honours and Awards

CIP recognizes excellence across Canada through our Honours & Awards program, while our partner charity, CIP/ICU Planning Student Trust Fund, does so through its scholarships, bursaries, and awards offerings to student members in accredited programs. These extraordinary planning achievements and planners highlight the best of our communities, organizations, and individuals at every career stage.

The Inaugural Emerging Planner Award

The CIP Emerging Planner Award celebrates the leaders of tomorrow. It recognizes outstanding professional success and achievement – including leadership and service to the profession – of a Canadian planner within their first ten years of professional planning experience.

Nicholas Kuhl RPP, MCIP
Nicholas Kuhl RPP, MCIP

Nicholas is a Planner with O2 Planning + Design in Calgary, where he specializes in infill master planning, development approvals, and growth planning for regional, urban, and community planning projects. He is also a Sessional Instructor at the University of Alberta’s Applied Land Use Planning program and volunteers his time coordinating the University of Calgary graduate planning students as part of the Citizens + Students program. He was central to the development, adoption, and implementation of the Habitat Professionals Forum’s Roadmap to Recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic, which he presented and assisted in officially unveiling at the 2022 World Urban Forum in Poland. Currently serving as Director of the Alberta Professional Planners Institute (APPI), Nicholas has also served on the CIP Board of Directors and Co-Chair of CIP’s Student Affairs Sub-Committee. He holds a Master of Urban and Regional Planning degree from Queen’s University and degrees in Geography and Education from Brock University.

Joëlle Ouellette urbaniste, MCIP
Joëlle Ouellette urbaniste, MCIP

Joëlle is a Project Manager with L’Atelier Urbain in Montreal. She has contributed to diverse projects in urban design and sustainable development, urban planning and resilience, and innovative regulation. These projects have included a development plan for a former factory site, a design concept for a municipal park and beach, a master plan for a campus, transportation-oriented development projects, eco-districts, city center development projects, and pedestrianization plans. Joëlle’s volunteerism includes serving as a committee member with the Ordre des urbanistes du Québec (OUQ)’s Relève en urbanisme, which promotes the planning profession to young people, and MTL Green, which promotes sustainable development in Montreal. She also works with community organizations that address food security and other daily life issues. Joëlle holds a Baccalauréat en urbanisme from the Université du Québec à Montreal, is currently completing a Master’s Degree in Environment and Sustainable Development at the University of Montreal, and has received training as an Architectural Technologist.

College of Fellows

The College of Fellows is a special status for members of CIP, which recognizes excellence, identifies prominent role models, promotes advancements in planning practice, and draws leaders to the forefront of planning in Canada. Recognition as a Fellow is the highest award the Institute can give to a planner and is given only to those who exhibit the highest professional attainment and a wide breadth of experience. In 2023, CIP welcomed four new inductees into our esteemed College of Fellows:

Bruce Curtis RPP (Ret.), FCIP
Bruce Curtis RPP (Ret.), FCIP

Bruce has played key roles in the Ontario Public Service on a variety of noteworthy planning initiatives including the development of the Provincial Policy Statement and the Growth Plan for the Greater Golden Horseshoe, both of which have since been recognized for their contributions to excellence in the planning profession. For several years, Bruce was a lecturer at the University of Western Ontario, and a guest lecturer at the Universities of Waterloo and Guelph, where he also contributed as a graduate advisor. After serving on the Accreditation and Legislative Task Forces during CIP’s Planning for the Future review, Bruce was a Founding Director of the Professional Standards Board (PSB), serving as its first Treasurer. Bruce has also been a tireless volunteer with the Ontario Professional Planners Institute (OPPI), serving as a Director and Chair of various committees. He is a recipient of the Amethyst Award, Ontario’s highest order of recognition for excellence in the Ontario Public Service.

Pierre Filion RPP (Ret.), FCIP
Pierre Filion RPP (Ret.), FCIP

Pierre has distinguished himself as one of Canada’s leading scholars, whose teaching and research has made significant contributions to planning practice in Canada and abroad. Whether through his courses, lectures, or as an advisor and mentor, Pierre has been a leader in advancing planning course curricula for almost four decades. He is a leading expert in downtown and inner-city planning, metropolitan regional planning, and the interaction between land use planning and transportation. His many publications and books include, “Canadian Cities in Transition”, now in its sixth edition, which is a staple for planning students across the country, as well as practicing planners who seek to better understand the transformations underway in Canada’s urban centres. Pierre’s expertise on complex urban issues has led to collaborations with government (local, provincial, and federal) and non-government agencies.

Samantha Murphy RPP, LPP, FCIP
Samantha Murphy RPP, LPP, FCIP

Samantha is a planning consultant based in Prince Edward Island (PEI). After commencing her career as a small-town planner, she was engaged by the Province as the Senior Provincial Planner, then Manager of Municipal Affairs. As Manager, she undertook a transformative role as a key leader in the development of a new Municipal Government Act. Her work in modernizing legislation, policy, and governance to strengthen PEI’s municipalities will benefit communities far into the future. Samantha also championed a new PEI Planning Act and Registered Professional Planners Act, all the while continuing to serve as the ‘go-to’ planner for advice on governance and planning issues. She has served on the Boards of the Prince Edward Island Institute of Professional Planners (PEIIPP), Atlantic Planners Institute (API), and CIP. Samantha’s lasting impact on these organizations also includes being a key contributor to the major restructuring of both CIP and API.

Eric Turcotte RPP, FCIP
Eric Turcotte RPP, FCIP

Eric is a Partner with Urban Strategies. As a planner, urban designer, and architect, he has led on projects such as the University of Ottawa Master Plan and Design Strategy, Ottawa Downtown Master Plan and Design Strategy, Toronto’s CAMH Master Plan, the landmark Eglinton Crosstown LRT project, as well as many projects across Canada, the UK, and Ireland. His membership or chairing of Design Review Panels (City of Toronto, Waterfront Toronto, City of Brampton) has provided a valuable contribution to improving the quality of important city-building initiatives. Eric is a founding member, Director, and President of the Council for Canadian Urbanism. He is also a past member of Ontario’s Urban Design Working Group and is active in his own community of Roncesvalles in Toronto. Many of his projects have received national and international recognition and awards, including from CIP and Ontario Professional Planners Institute (OPPI).

Celebrating Our Volunteers

CIP’s accomplishments are a testament to our volunteers who ensure the Institute’s governance, programs, and extensive networks are robust and effective. Thank you for your dedication and service!

Communications: CIP Brand and Website

To support CIP’s Strategic Plan, CIP’s new website and visual identity was updated and designed to be modern, accessible, and member-focused, making it easier for users to access resources and events while fostering further brand recognition and cohesion.

Also aligned to our Strategic Plan, two new monthly e-newsletters were launched, each with a different focus and unique content that helps all our members access relevant and timely information and opportunities:

Plan-It: Member Matters offers content that focuses on CIP’s action issues and draws connections to our broader membership.

Plan-It: Career Central focuses on individual professional development, including career and learning opportunities.