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Biographical Information on City Planners: Home

Biographical Information on City Planners is a bibliographic research guide to UC Berkeley library and web resources for biographical information on city and regional planners, both historical and contemporary

Contact Information

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Environmental Design Library
210 Wurster Hall
University of California
Berkeley, CA 94720-6000

Search Terms

In the library catalogs try the following subject headings to locate either individual or collective biographies about city planners. To find contemporary biographies, see the author descriptions that often accompany journal articles and books.

[personal name: last name, first name] 
Autobiography: f pn [personal name] and tw autobiography 
City planners -- [place name] -- Biography 
City planners -- [place name] -- History 
City planners -- Bibliography 
City planners -- Correspondence 
City planners -- Interviews 
Regional planners -- [place name] -- Biography 
Women city planners -- [place name] -- Biography

Modify these searches with the addition of descriptive terms (subheadings). The following subheadings may be especially useful:

-Criticism & Interpretation
-Knowledge and learning

General Sources

In addition to titles listed here, visit Biographical Sources for a list of links to full-text biographical sources on the web.

Print Sources

  • Biography index. Indexes books, biographical dictionaries, periodicals, diaries, obituaries, etc. Coverage: 1946/49-
  • Current biography, H.W. Wilson. Includes the usual biographical data plus: subject's own views, attitudes and opinions, references to additional sources of information, and more.
  • World biographical index 12. Contains 3.5 million short biographical entries. The Library owns the microfiche editions of the archives containing the complete texts of the biographical descriptions. Library locations for the microfiche archives and the print indexes can be found by searching OskiCat.

Finding Journal & Newspaper Articles

Biographies may be found in journal and newspaper articles. In addition to the indexes listed here, some newspapers are available full-text on the web; information regarding archives of older issues is sometimes available at these sites. See News Databases for a list of links to online full-text local and international newspapers.

To boost your article retrieval skills, make a Research Advisory appointment. See also City Planning Indexes & Abstracts for a more complete list of journal article indexes. For more indexes and databases see the complete list of A-Z databases


Obituaries frequently include synopses of an individual's professional life and contributions and often appear in newspapers. See Finding Journal & Newspaper Articles in this guide for useful sources.


Collective Biographies

  • American planner: biographies and recollections, Donald A. Krueckeberg, ed. New Brunswick, NJ: Center for Urban Policy Research, 1994. Biographies of some of the leading city and regional planners in the U.S., 1890-1980. Includes overview of American regional planning.
  • Dictionary of American communal and utopian history, by Robert S. Fogarty. Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1980. Approximately half the volume is comprised of brief biographies of 140 individuals who had prominent roles in the development or leading of utopian communities. Also includes brief articles on more than 200 utopian communites. Bibliography.
  • Pioneers in British planning, Gordon E. Cherry, ed. London: Architectural Press, 1981

  • Urban America: documenting the planners. Catalog of an exhibition at the John M. Olin Library, Cornell Univ., Ithaca, New York, October 21-December 31, 1985. Elaine D. Engst and H. Thomas Hickerson, comps. Ithaca, N.Y.: Dept. of Manuscripts and Univ. Archives, Cornell Univ. Libraries, 1985. Catalog includes images and biographical texts.

  • The Urbanists, 1865-1915, by Dana F. White. New York: Greenwood Press, 1989. Includes biographical information about early American planners.
  • "Women in the Australian town planning movement 1900-1950," by Robert Freestone, in Planning perspectives, vol 10: 3 (July 1995), pp. 259-277.
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