Professor Fritz Wagner gave an engaging and inspiring talk to 23 graduate students about a host of planning issues within the United States and Canadian contexts, drawing from his extensive experience in both countries as well as his practical knowledge of urban issues facing nations around the world, especially middle eastern countries where he was actively involved as a consultant with the World Heath Organization.
He urged future planners to get involved with community leaders and residents and to understand their needs within the specific sociocultural, political, and economic contexts that shaped their lives. He pointed out that comprehensive understanding will initiate meaningful and durable changes.
He also met with faculty members of the School of Regional Planning and Development to discuss new opportunities to further develop ties between the two universities. Professor Wagner has more than 20 years of experience working with Québec universities.
Working with the World Health Organization in 1980, Fritz established a center called the WHO Collaborating Center for Health Aspects of Urban Development. Through the Center, he gained a greater appreciation for the impact of planning on health, both in larger cities and smaller villages, and especially in other countries. Over 15 years of travel (primarily to the Middle East), and through the promotion of healthier cities and villages, he gained knowledge about the international challenges of planning-related health issues and a better understanding of the challenges and differences in health policy in diverse sections of the world.