Certification in Creative Placemaking

The arts can happen anywhere, but almost never do by accident. Whether it is in an international art center like Santa Fe, New Mexico or a blighted neighborhood, creative communities and economies tend to be envisioned by placemakers, and built through skilled leadership and collaboration.

Creative placemaking is a new and fast-growing approach to enhancing community and economic development through arts and culture.  Since the term was coined in 2010 in a National Endowment for the Arts white paper, hundreds of communities around the United States have been pursuing creative placemaking strategies to improve quality of life and enhance prosperity. As more elected officials see the value of the arts as a feature that supports community and economic development, they are looking for qualified expertise to create structures and programs that integrate the arts into their plans for community development. Learners who meet the challenges of Creative Placemaking Certification will develop the skills and knowledge that clients and communities seek.

About the Program

The Certification in Creative Placemaking at The Ohio State University is the first and only program in the United States that offers both a practitioner certification and graduate credit.  The program is practical, scholarly, convenient and collegial and can be completed entirely online. The certification makes it possible for already-enrolled master of city and regional planning students at Ohio State to take modules alongside those working solely on the certification.

The 10-month program combines deep learning in placemaking techniques with monthly teleconferences on entrepreneurial leadership. Students will be able to connect the pieces through a distance-learning model designed to meet the needs of busy professionals, ensuring they get the most value from their investment in the program. The teleconferences are live, but are also recorded so they're available to watch where and when you want – according to your schedule.

To earn a certification in creative placemaking, students will need to pass all six creative placemaking modules and demonstrate competency in the subject by working on a creative placemaking project and writing about their experiences. More details can be found on the curriculum page. The Creative Placemaking program is also approved for American Planning Association Certification Maintenance credits. Each module, upon completion, is worth 3 CM credits.

Along with gaining extensive knowledge in creative placemaking, students in the program will build their capacity to lead cost-effective, inclusive and sustainable initiatives – no matter if they are executives or advisors. Students can work on real issues facing actual communities – and emerge with products they can use to promote creative placemaking in communities of their choice.  The program is structured to appeal to students who appreciate learning from their peers as well as their teachers, affording numerous opportunities to share ideas with professionals in the arts, public affairs and urban planning.

The Certification in Creative Placemaking at Ohio State program is directed by national award-winning urban planner Leonardo Vazquez, AICP/PP, founder of The National Consortium for Creative Placemaking and the creator of several online programs for placemaking professionals.  The program is produced by the City and Regional Planning section at Ohio State, a pioneer and leader in online education for urban planners.

 What participants are saying...

"The placemaking program is the most intellectually stimulating experience I have ever had, nothing even rivals it except perhaps art school. ...The other participants are truly remarkable."

Dr. Debra Rose, PhD., Library and Recreation Services Administrator, City of Pinellas Park, Florida, USA


image credit Courtesy David Pankratz