Recently there has been a movement in urban planning to give more consideration to the needs of the community for which a project is being planned. Urban planning no longer only involves where to place buildings and how to adjust traffic flows. Urban planning is beginning to consider more and more the community that it serves. Many communities that are slated for renovation consist of a large number of mothers that could work if they had access to childcare. Providing mothers an alternative that would allow them to work and care for their children at the same time would increase the local workforce of a community and raise the economy of the area as well.
Companies have known about the benefits of company-based childcare since the mid 1970s. Many companies have programs in place that allows on-site childcare for their female employees. The proposed research will explore the possibilities of instituting a similar program into urban planning. This research will explore the possibilities of considering community childcare options in the mix of city planning. It will examine case studies of companies that have instituted company-based childcare and will determine the successes and failures of these programs. It is expected that this research will reveal that companies have found many benefits to company sponsored child care programs and that these programs will be easily instituted in the urban planning setting.
Company Sponsored Childcare is a concept that has been around since the late 1970s. It arose from a need by companies to retain a loyal and competitive workforce. Women have been a valuable part of this workforce and cannot be ignored by companies. Traditional corporate structure was originally set up to cater to the adult male. They did not include women in the mix or take into consideration their particular needs. In this society it is the female who is responsible for the care and rearing of the children. However, the fact that women contribute considerable tot the workforce cannot be ignored either. Women who enter the workforce often find themselves unsuccessfully trying to juggle the responsibilities of family and career. Companies began to realize that they needed to address these issues in order to retain a valuable portion of the labor force.
The needs of cities are changing also and many have pointed out that what worked in the past no longer worked now. City planing has evolved from deciding where to place the buildings and roads to looking more closely at the needs of the communities that make up the city. Many of these plans focus on the inner city where there are many women that cannot work due to the needs of having to care for their children. They cannot afford childcare and cannot go out of their community to obtain it. Recently there has been a movement towards designing cities around a community center. The proposed research will explore the successes and failures of company-based childcare and will make recommendations as to how company-based childcare can become a part of urban planning as well.
Rationale for Study
This study is based on recent articles that point out that the needs of out cities are changing and that as a result, urban planning is changing as well. Urban planners must now consider many issues that were not considered in the past. Urban planners now must take into consideration the specific needs of the communities that their projects will serve. Many of these projects take places in parts of the city that are undergoing renewal and renovations. Many times these communities contain high populations of women with small children. These women could provide an important labor force and could substantially help to raise the economic level of the community. However, many cannot work due to their inability to find adequate childcare. This makes them dependent on the system instead of productive members of society.
This study is based on the idea that companies have long recognized the importance of their female workforce. There has been a growing trend to offer company-based childcare as a benefit to attract and retain capable female employees. This idea used to be unusual, but there has been a growing trend to offer this as a standard benefit package. Many companies can now reap the benefits of a full-time female workforce.
As urban planners attempt to build better communities that work together as a unit, there has been a growing trend towards the community center as a focal point of the community. If urban planners are to truly build cities that meet the needs of their residents they must consider all of the issues that concern them. Urban planners could benefit, as private companies have, by including a plan for helping to provide child care for their mother who wish to work. There are many models that these plans could take and city planners would do well to look at successful corporate programs and to follow their lead. This research will explore the successes and failures of company-based childcare programs. It will attempt to identify the qualities that are likely to lead to the success of a program and those qualities that are likely to lead to failure. In doing so it will try to determine a type of standard by which urban planners might devise their own child care initiatives to help mothers in the community become productive members of society. This research will critique the various options available to urban planners and will present ways in which urban planners might adopt some of the features of the more successful corporate plans into their own child care plans.
Scope of Study
This study will examine the successes and failures of company-based childcare programs for 20 companies in the United States. This study will include only companies that currently have a childcare plan in place. It will examine the case studies to determine what elements have led to the success or failure of the plans. It will include only companies that have had their plans in place for five years or more. It will include both large and small companies in all segments of the market. The primary objective will be to identify features that may be helpful, or mistakes to avoid in the planning of community childcare.
The formal study will be limited to companies that have these plans in place in the United States. However, several other countries will be explored, such as Sweden that have developed successful plans to bring more women into the workforce in their own country. Sweden is a particularly interesting place because they have recently faced a severe shortage of labor and had to develop some innovative solutions to their predicament. The purpose of this study will be to examine the possibilities that could be incorporated into urban planning schemes. The positive and negative aspects of each idea will be examined. This research will be exploratory I nature and will seek to provide solutions to the problems faced by urban planners as they attempt to build communities that truly serve the needs of the constituents that live in them.
Thesis and Research Objectives
The exploratory data in this study will support the thesis that company-based child care programs could provide an model that could be used by urban planners to design communities that better serve the citizens that live in them. This research hopes to achieve several objectives. The first is to compile a series of case studies that have company-based childcare programs and that has had them for more than five years. The second is to determine the common elements that are present in successful programs and those that are present in unsuccessful programs. The Third is to determine how these models could be translated into the urban planning scenario. The fourth is to devise a criteria for evaluating the success or failure of current programs as well as to provide a standard by which to determine the success or failure of current programs and those in the future.
The final product of this research will be a report that details the findings of this information in a clear format that clearly draws relationships and makes the patterns easy to detect. The final presentation will paint the picture of the current state of company-based childcare plans and how they may be translated into the urban community setting. It will also discuss various economic and social implications of these types of plans on the communities that they serve. It will discuss various models and programs that may be employed to help develop successful plans in the future. It is the ultimate objective of this research to focus on a problem and to make suggestions that may help to pose solutions as well. It is expected that the qualitative data found in the available report will support the main thesis of this work.
This research topic essentially acts as a bridge between two previously separate areas. The changing face of out cities is…