By Gwen Urey
Planners Network was in the vanguard by conceiving of itself as a “network” in 1975. We have evolved technologically, holding ourselves together through old newsletter technology and the new pn-net and Web page. As these vehicles and our conferences reflect, a network has been not only a way for members to communicate and relate to each other, but also a way to create links between progressive planning and other progressive movements and organizations. Whither PN? Forward, of course, and always in a progressive direction. As a network, PN links planners whose eyes are forward even though they may be focused on diverse goals. Our more difficult question, I think, has always been “how?” How can momentum in a forward and progressive direction be created and sensed by a whole network of people, some of whom will, at any given moment, feel that their own specific goals are more remote than ever? How can momentum be sustained and accelerated?
I have missed opportunities to sustain and accelerate the momentum, and these relate primarily to “how” I use PN. I think my biggest oversight has been that I use PN as a way to connect progressive students with progressive planners, but I should also use it to connect students who do not necessarily think of themselves as progressive with progressive planners. The “how” for me will also include a new effort to interact as an educator with PN members in Southern California.