What do we aim to do?
We aim to help practitioners create and maintain well-designed, good quality places. We do this by offering:
- information on latest policies and publications
- practitioner networks
- design surgeries
We do not design schemes, write policy or offer formal comment on proposals.
Who are our partners?
UDL is supported by Transport for London and London Councils, and we work very closely with these organisations, helping to ensure our training and networking services reflect the most up to date policies, research, best practice examples and funding criteria. They also make up our Executive Board, which manages our work.
What do we provide?
Lots of training, events, meetings, online resources and more. The rest of this website explains what we offer, from our training events to e-learning resources. UDL runs a big programme, which has been growing steadily year on year since 2005.
Here are some statistics for April 2012 to March 2013:
- 90 training events plus other network meetings and in-house sessions delivered
- 3209 separate training place bookings taken
- 890 individuals booked (lots of people came to more than one
- Almost 400 separate organisations took part
- 8 out of 10 average training session feedback score
Are we useful?
To help us understand our impact and steer our programme in 2009 we commissioned a report into urban design skills and UDL’s effectiveness. This was carried out by Ecotec and University College London.
The report found that UDL had been effective and was playing a significant role in increasing practitioner skills. There was also some evidence that our work was directly improving the quality of places, but time scales, and the complexity of influences make this hard to pin down. The report also found that although urban design related skills had increased since 2005, the perceived need for these skills had increased even more – meaning we need to work even harder to try to narrow the skills gap.
We are not a commercial training provider and work hard to ensure all income we receive is used to support our members. So although we do take some individual bookings for events charged at a day rate, most of our uses are members, either because the organisations they work for pay UDL a yearly subscription or grant, or because they have paid to be a network member for a year.
So please feel free to book individual places at events, but yearly subscriptions or memberships are likely to be more cost effective and convenient for you.