Global Planning Education Association Network (GPEAN) was founded during the first World Planning Schools Congress (WPSC) in 2001 in Shanghai. Four planning school associations, ACSP, AESOP, ANZAPS, and APSA joined together to hold the first WPSC in Shanghai at Tongji University. The congress drew 650 planning scholars from over 250 planning schools in 60 countries. While in Shanghai, leaders of ten planning school associations met to discuss common objectives and possible future actions. At the conclusion of the meetings, they unanimously agreed to what has become known as the Shanghai Statement, signed by representatives of all ten associations at the closing ceremony of the Congress. The statement, which became the basis of GPEAN, highlighted the goal of increasing mutual communication in order to improve the quality and visibility of planning and planning education. To achieve this, it was agreed to establish a global planning education association network.

The Shanghai Statement

Planning association executives at their meeting on the campus of Tongji University in Shanghai during the first World Planning Schools Congress, July 2001.