The institute was established in 1971 following an increasing appreciation for the spatial dimension of socio-economic development. The leadership of the country believed that development is a multiple process where the place playing a decisive role: in production, distribution as well as social changes. This process is of a comprehensive nature, which requires a team of planners, specialized in spatial & socio - economic facets of the development that implied growth and change at the same time. This understanding necessitates the establishment of the institute.
The institute, accordingly, became a melting pot for several specializations related to such field of planning in order to qualify students with a comprehensive approach for planning. To integrate the national level with local potentials, the regional level becomes the policy instrument performing the integration, where the spatial disparities could be eliminated.
According to law No. 116 of 1971, the institute should provide the country with professionals qualified by a common planning language to prepare regional plans & urban master plans in order to control the spatial dimension toward more socio-economic efficiency. To realize such a task, the institute adapts a study program that coincides with professional requirements.
The institute of Urban & regional planning for post Graduate studies was established in 1971 , to meet the pressing needs of Iraq for specialists who have received a higher professional diploma , master , and PhD in fields of urban and regional planning. They would be qualified in spatial development policy formation and adopt these policies in plans and follow up their implementation starting from the study of spatial environment (cities , provinces , and regions ) as an integrated system in order to achieve a social ,economic , architectural and environmental comprehensive planning of these spatial units.
This can be done through the scientific procedures and methods by adoption of planning in its different stages and levels: locally, Urban, rurally, regionally, and nationally. Hence, we can specify the objectives of this scientific institute as follows:
It prepares planning specialists specialized in Urban and regional planning in order to raise cities , rural areas and Iraqi provinces reality .
Developing the necessary information systems in the institute to establish a knowledge structure which serves the projects, thesis, and dissertations of the institute students.
- Continuous emphasis on the scientific and practical nature of the study programs in the institute and its practical projects.
- Raising the scientific capability of teaching and researching instructors, and stepping up the scientific levels of students graduated from the institute.
- To achieve the planning awareness by emphasizing the philosophy of strategic planning in preparing the structural plans and basic plans of the cities.
- The institute continuous commitment to take into consideration the human and ethical dimensions of the higher education to improve the level and quality of education and its positive reflection on the student graduated from the institute.
- Setting up training for those people working in planning authorities through the sessions of continuing education or involving them in the preparation of the training projects which aim to study developmental reality of the rural and urban settlements and discuss the procedures to economical, social, and architectural development of those settlements.
- Provide the technical and scientific advices to those authorities who are related to planning process whether in joint working teams or by participating in committees which are related to these things or through consulting contracts by planning consulting Bureau.
- Publishing a specialized scientific periodical half-yearly “Planner and Development’’ which has been published since 1997.
- Setting up scientific conferences, symposiums and study seminars which are related to the disciplines of urban and regional planning.
- Developing and supporting the cultural and scientific linkages with Iraqi, Arabic, and foreign Scientific institutes.