With over 150 members, AESOP is the only representation of planning schools of Europe. Given this unique position, AESOP strengthens its profile as a professional body. AESOP mobilizes its resources, taking a leading role and entering its expertise into ongoing debates and initiatives regarding planning education and planning qualifications of future professionals. AESOP promotes its agenda with professional bodies, politicians and all other key stakeholders in spatial and urban development and management across Europe.


AESOP's was founded in 1987 and has been registered as a non-profit association under Belgian law since May 1992. A new AESOP Charter was accepted by AESOP Council of Representatives on 5th May 2012 in Oslo. This Charter version was updated in accordance to the Belgian law on 13 November 2023.
The AESOP Core Curriculum represents an updated version of the Core Requirements for a high-quality European Planning Education, issued in 1995 as part of AESOP’s statement on European Planning Education (AESOP Working Group on the Curriculum of Planning Education, 1995). The Core Curriculum plays two crucial, interrelated roles for AESOP: It identifies knowledge, competencies and values deemed vital for spatial planners at the start of the 21st century; and it serves as a ‘benchmark’ for the evaluation of applications and admission of new member schools and their education programmes.


AESOP Executive Committee (ExCo) operates with delegated powers on behalf of the Council of Representatives (CoRep) and is subject to its authority. The Committee meets at least twice a year to secure the aims of the AESOP Charter and to implement the policies of AESOP as expressed in the General Assembly or by the Council of Representatives.
All the powers of the AESOP rest within the Council of Representatives (CoRep) which is a body elected by Full Members. Among other functions, it defines the policies and programmes of the Association and elects the Officials of AESOP. The CoRep is composed by the National Representatives, the Officials and up to three additional persons designated by the President.
The General Assembly acts as formal means of consultation, discusses planning education, research and practice issues and considers the activities and general policy of the Association. The General Assembly is open to individual members and representatives of institutional members, as well as to academics and students from schools represented in the Association. The GA takes place during the Annual Congress.


The AESOP YA network is an AESOP working group in particular addressed at planners who have only recently entered the academic world: PhD students, postdocs, people starting in academic positions. The activities of the AESOP YA network are complementary to other activities that are being deployed within AESOP as a whole. The YA Network is organized by a Coordination Team (CT) of five elected members. One person from the CT represents the YA network in the AESOP Executive Committee.


AESOP is one of the eleven planning schools associations that form the Global Planning Education Association Network (GPEAN).
AESOP cooperates with a large number of professional and scientific bodies in the field of planning.


AESOP General Assembly in Venice (July 2019) E-Seminar // © Ben Davy
Agnes, Angelique, Rachel, Maroš, and Beata ExCo meeting (March 2020, Wien) // © Ben Davy
And so does Beata. One month later, a young Swedish women started a school strike to end the complacency of politicians and consumers regarding climate change. // © Ben Davy
Angelique in the Planning Theory track at the 2017 AESOP Congress in Lisbon // © Ben Davy
Angelique, Weiping, Marlon, and Ben at the ACSP conference in Buffalo, NY (2018) // © Ben Davy
Anna chairing the CoRep meeting in Warsaw (2017) // © Ben Davy
Anna singing French folklore at the Gothenburg congress dinner (2018) // © Ben Davy
Anna, Ela, Beata, Zorica, Angelique, and Daniel (CoRep meeting 2019 in Ljubljana) // © Ben Davy
Coffee break during the 2017 AESOP Congress in Lisbon // © Ben Davy
CoRep in Vienna (March 2020) Agnes, Angelique, Zeynep (and several friends online) // © Ben Davy
Daniel explains the complexities of quality recognition (Venice, 2017) // © Ben Davy
E-Seminar for PhD candidates in planning (July 2020) // © Ben Davy
Ela and Francesco chat about the Transactions of AESOP special issue on planning for human dignity (Heads of School meeting, Newcastle 2018) // © Ben Davy
Ela, Zorica, and Anaïs in a selfie session in Venice (2017) // © Ben Davy
ExCo in Wien (March 2020) Beata, Agnes, Maroš, Rachel, Angelique, Thomas D., Ben // © Ben Davy
ExCo meeting in Gothenburg (2018)- Anna, Paulo P., Zorica, Ela, Beata, Daan // © Ben Davy
Jan and Ben explore the mystery of a relaxed selfie face (Gothenburg, 2018) // © Ben Davy
Lunch break during the 2019 AESOP Congress in Venice // © Ben Davy
Marlon summing up the conversation at the end of the ACSP/AESOP Special Session »After Hardin« (Gothenburg, 2018) // © Ben Davy
Paulo and Ben enjoy the end of the 2018 annual congress in Gothenburg // © Ben Davy
Paulo P. relaxes in a café in Porto (2018) // © Ben Davy
Paulo S. enjoys the 2019 AESOP Congress in Venice // © Ben Davy
Paulo, Daniel, Zorica, and Daan at the ExCo meeting in Ljubljana (March 2019) // © Ben Davy
Rachel keeps the General Secretariat going during the 2019 AESOP Congress in Venice // © Ben Davy
Teresa, Angelique, and Marlon at the ACSP/AESOP Special Session »After Hardin« (Gothenburg, 2018) // © Ben Davy
The 2018 AESOP congress dinner in Gothenburg was a spectacular event. This could never happen on ZOOM // © Ben Davy
The AEKOM group in Gothenburg (2018)- Tijana, Paulo S., Camilla, Joana, Alex in deep discussion // © Ben Davy
The Opening Session of the 2018 AESOP Congress in Gothenburg // © Ben Davy
Weiping and Ben sign the ACSP/AESOP Memorandum of Understanding (2019 AESOP Congress in Venice) // © Ben Davy
Zorica, Daniel, Rachel, Weiping, Anna, Beata, Marlon, Angelique, Ben, and Paolo P. en route to the Lido- Opening ceremony of the 2019 AESOP Congress in Venice // © Ben Davy