Databases and online resources for Planning, Property Development and Urban Design

  • Below you can find the databases and online resources most relevant to Planning and Urban Design. Databases and online resources for  Property Development can be found on the Real Estate Management Subject page.

  • Need help? Contact Geoff Morgan at »

    Journal articles are an academic information type - they are written by academics and the audience they are writing for are academics. Journal articles will usually be a detailed and objective investigation of a very specific topic and, as a result, may not easy to understand by somebody who does not understand the basics of the topic already.

    In the databases below the journal articles will either be present as an index (meaning it is just the information about the journal article) or in full-text (meaning a PDF of the whole journal article can be downloaded from the database and read).


    • LibrarySearch : a very large multi-subject database that searches many of the Planning and Urban Design journal subscriptions. It also searches our books, ebooks, images, and other types of information sources at the same time.
    • Academic search complete : a multi-subject database including the full-text of many journal articles.
    • Avery index to architectural periodicals : a database of journal articles in architecture and urban design. Some articles are available as full-text.
    • Emerald insight : a database containing articles relating to property development and planning.
    Need help? Contact Geoff Morgan at »


    • Construction information service : a full-text database of architectural, construction and planning reports, papers, Building Regulations and books.
    • DCP Online : Development Control Practice is full-text guidance on planning control in Great Britain.
    • Google : a good way to find reports from governments, charities, and other non-commercial and non-academic organisations (sometimes called 'grey literature') is to search Google for your keywords and add filetype:pdf. You can also specific a website or type of website to search by using site: (e.g. searches only the Oxford City Council website, and searches only websites that have .org in their address).
    • Heritage Counts : a free resource with a series of annual reports on the state of England's historic environment. It includes a national overview and a number of regional summaries.
    • LGiU Briefings : policy briefings from the Local Government Information Unit on regeneration, skills, training, economy, and environment.
    • Planning Magazine: current information on UK planning including news, analysis, appeals, policy, legislation and jobs.

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    Oxford and Oxfordshire

    United Kingdom

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    • Digimap : has digital maps and data that can be annotated and downloaded or printed. Includes Ordnance Survey maps, Environment Digimap, Geology Digimap, and Historic Digimap.
    • UCL Drawing Gym : an exercise programme to help you improve your sketching and visualisation skills.