Short Course Webinars

Evidence-Based Sustainability

This highly relevant short course is broken down into five sessions taught by highly experienced leaders in the field.

This course was recorded live at the APA National Planning Conference on April 15, 2012.

CM | 6.25

How This Works


You will stream the recorded audio, PowerPoint, and video presentation from a URL that will be sent to you via e-mail once you register.

Your single user registration covers access for one person.

The group rate is for agencies, firms, and university planning programs. If you registered for the group rate, you may share the access URL with your colleagues within the agency, firm, or university planning program (including students) to play the webinar on multiple computers or project the program from one computer in a conference room. You are not permitted to share the URL with anyone outside the agency, firm, or planning program.

Registration includes access to a special conference website with supplemental reading materials.

You have access to the program for one year from the date of purchase and may claim CM credit until that date.

What Technology Is Required?

You will need:

  • A computer with a Windows Operating System and Internet Explorer. **(Currently this product is only available to those with Windows & Internet Explorer)**
  • Internet connection
  • Speakers or headphones to listen to the audio
  • Microsoft Silverlight (you will be prompted if you don't already have this free software installed)

Please note: In order to deliver this program at a lower cost, this technology is self-guided. Follow the instructions provided via the program links.


Registration is non-refundable. Please review the course outline below before registering for this course.

Registration Online

You may also register for this webinar together with our other short course, Retrofitting Streets and Corridors.

Learn more about the Retrofitting Streets and Corridors webinar

Register for Evidence-Based Sustainability plus Retrofitting Streets and Corridors

Course Outline

Evidence-Based Sustainability outline (pdf)

Contents of Course

Measuring Sustainability: What and Why

In this first session in the short course, speakers examine the issues and provide the context.  Why do we care about sustainability measurement? Who has been doing what? These questions provide the framework for thinking about measuring sustainability and the big problems that arise with measurement and implementation. A brief overview provides the historical context and definitions and leads to a discussion of the reasons for measures. Next speakers describe some of the difficulties for implementation and how these have been resolved. The session ends with an explanation of the five-session short course. CM | 1.25

Terry Moore, FAICP, ECONorthwest; Dr. Gerrit Knaap, Director, National Center for Smart Growth

Measuring Sustainability with Data

The third session focuses on data sources and types of measurements, by category of measurement. This session provides an extended discussion of the details of the technical problems of measurement and how to resolve them. Speakers use a longitudinal analysis of the ways in which data shapes sustainability planning. Speakers address other "evidence" besides data sets: surveys, case studies, cross-jurisdictional rating and ranking systems, qualitative/subjective evidence (e.g., story telling; oral history).  CM | 1.25

Hilda Blanco, University of Southern California

Assessing Sustainability

Contrast the competing definitions of sustainability and learn how sustainable approaches are making a difference in communities. Learn why assessment tools are critically important in comparing options, programs, and overall efforts. Explore qualitative and quantitative assessment tools, comprehensive assessment instruments, and more informal assessment approaches. This session builds on the new PAS Report, "Assessing Sustainability: A Guide for Local Government." CM | 1.25

Wayne Feiden, FAICP, Director, City of Northampton; Erin Simmons, Director of Design Assistance, Center for Communities by Design, American Institute for Architects; Dory E. Reeves, Professor and Associate Dean, School of Architecture and Planning, University of Auckland, New Zealand

Integrating Measurements into Decision Making

In the fourth session, speakers examine the integration of the evidence into decision making. This is a more difficult problem than measurement. It's easy to name things to measure, and not that hard to measure them if you have the budget. But what do you do that is relevant to real decision making with the measurements once you have them? What are the analytical techniques for scoring, weighting and ranking? What are the procedural techniques for agreement on the analytical techniques and their influence on policy decisions? And what about implementation and enforcement? CM | 1.25

Matthew Kitchen, Program Manager for Development, Pudget Sound Regional Council

Applications of Evidence-Based Sustainability

The final session examines two leading jurisdictions who have implemented sustainability programs and made data analysis and measurement integral to planning and policy. Plans are developed at many levels, yet MPO and level plans have a great potential due to the scope and resources available to for both the scope needed to under sustainability that is evidence-based. Regional plans and citywide programs are also assessed. The session examines theory and the practice of sustainability. CM | 1.25

Matt Carpenter, Sacramento Area Council of Governments; Robert Liberty, Executive Director, University of Oregon

Speaker Bios

Dory E. Reeves. As Professor of Planning at The University of Auckland, I provide leadership for the discipline and as Associate Dean Research for the Faculty of the National Institute of Creative Arts and Industries I am responsible for managing the Faculty research development fund which supports academics in developing their research careers. I am the University focal point for the thematic partnership with UN-Habitat and its representative on the Global Habitat Partner University Network.

Robert Liberty has spent more than thirty years working to curb urban and rural sprawl and to replace it with compact, livable cities, with more choices in housing and transportation for all families, and for the conservation of the rural lands that produce food, fiber and provide places for wildlife and ecological diversity. His work has included service as a Staff Attorney and later Executive Director of 1000 Friends of Oregon, the statewide organization created to enforce, improve and defend Oregon's statewide land use planning program. At 1000 Friends he reviewed city and county land use plans, carried out precedent-setting litigation, helped conceive and implement evaluations of the performance of the land use planning program and developed the initial concept for the Land Use Transportation Air Quality project. He has also worked as Senior Counsel to Oregon Congressman Earl Blumenauer, as planning consultant for governments and nonprofit organizations and as a Land Use Hearings Officer for Multnomah County. In 2004 he was elected to the Metro Council, the nation's first elected regional government with broad land use and transportation planning authority in the Portland, Oregon region. He was re-elected in 2008. On Metro he served as the chair, co-chair or Council liaison for committees addressing housing choice, major transit investments and transit-oriented development. In 2011 he became the first Executive Director of the Sustainable Cities Initiative, a new program that combines research, education and public service in order to advance the sustainability of cities in Oregon, the US and other countries. SCI's current programs include the Sustainable City Year, which The New York Times described as "perhaps the most comprehensive effort by a U.S. university to infuse sustainability into its curricula and community outreach." He is a regular presenter in the United States and in other countries on questions of land use and transportation policy, planning and implementation. Robert Liberty earned a BA in Political Science from the University of Oregon Honors College, an MA in Modern History from Oxford University where he was a Rhodes Scholar, and a JD from Harvard Law School.

Terry Moore, FAICP, has been a vice president and project manager at ECONorthwest since 1979. He has managed over 500 projects in transportation and land-use planning, economic development, growth management, policy analysis and finance, and market analysis. Moore is an adjunct professor in the Department of Planning, Public Policy, and Management at the University of Oregon. He started in planning as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Central America. He was a Fulbright Scholar on urban planning in Peru in 1986-1987. He was among the recipients of the American Planning Association's 1996 Current Topic Award for Transportation Planning. In 2001 he was selected as a Fellow of the American Institute of Certified Planners. In 2007 and again in 2009-10 he was a visiting scholar at the National Center for Smart Growth, where he worked a long-run scenario planning for the state of Maryland and on the development of an integrated model for the Washington DC / Baltimore megaregion. He was a member of a panel that advised the American Planning Association on developing a certification program for transportation planners. He has consulted and presented on planning issues in Central and South America, Europe, New Zealand, China, and Africa. In addition to contract research for public and private clients, Moore is a contributor to the professional planning literature. His articles on growth management, urban growth boundaries, project management, planning theory, and the land use / transportation connection have appeared in the Journal of the American Planning Association, Land Use Policy, Urban Land, the Journal of Urban Planning & Development, and the Journal of the American Institute of Planners. He has contributed chapters to three books published by the Lincoln Institute of Land Policy: Land Market Monitoring (2001), Engaging the Future (2007), and Planning Support Systems (2008). He was principal author for three books published by the American Planning Association Press: Economic Development Toolbox (2006), a second edition of The Transportation/Land Use Connection (2007), and Zoning as a Barrier to Multifamily Housing Development (2007). He co-authored the chapter on "Smart Growth" for the ICMA Greenbook on Local Planning. His chapter on "Fiscal Impact Analysis and the Costs of Alternative Development Patterns" will be published in the Oxford Handbook of Urban Economics and Planning in 2012. Moore's current work focuses on integrated regional planning for land use, transportation, and economic development; the economic evaluation of growth management policies; and market analysis for private development. He has worked on regional land use and transportation plans in Portland, Seattle, Salt Lake City, and Boise; transportation project evaluation and funding analysis for several MPOs and cities in the Northwest; economic development plans for Portland, Seattle, and Salt Lake City (Envision Utah); and land-use allocation models for several jurisdictions throughout the Northwest. Moore's strength in regional planning projects and land-use evaluations is his multidisciplinary background and 30 years of practical experience at the intersection of technical analysis and politics. He has degrees in engineering (Stanford University), urban and regional planning, and public administration (University of Oregon); he has published books, book chapters, or refereed journal articles on the transportation / land use connection, benefit-cost analysis in transportation, economic development, market analysis, scenario planning, and project management.

Wayne Feiden. Director of Planning and Development for the City of Northampton, MA. Adjunct University of Massachusetts. BS in Natural Resources from the University of Michigan Masters in Regional Planning from the University of North Carolina. Fulbright Specialist, New Zealand, 2011 Fulbright Specialist, South Africa, 2007 Eisenhower Fellowship, Hungary, 1995.