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Associate Arts and Culture Planner

The Metropolitan Area Planning Council (MAPC) seeks candidates for the position of Associate Arts and Culture Planner to serve as a key member of our Arts & Culture (A&C) Department. The Associate Planner will support arts and culture planning projects and research efforts that advance the department’s current priorities: building municipal capacity to work with artists and support the local and regional creative and cultural economy, integrating arts and culture into COVID recovery and climate resiliency initiatives, and promoting a more welcoming and inclusive region through arts, culture, and heritage. The planner will have opportunities to staff project work in established work areas and support development of new projects in alignment with the department’s priorities and the priorities identified in MetroCommon2050, MAPC’s regional plan.

The Associate Planner will join the Arts & Culture Department’s six-person team and will report to the Senior Arts & Culture Planner. MAPC’s Arts & Culture Department is one of the first efforts nationwide to advance arts, culture and heritage to build a more sustainable and equitable future through regional planning. 

About MAPC:
MAPC is the Regional Planning Agency (RPA) serving the people who live and work in metropolitan Boston. Our strategic priorities are to promote smart growth, collaboration, climate mitigation and resilience, and equity in the region. We are guided by our regional plan, MetroCommon2050: Shaping the Region Together. MAPC’s staff includes approximately 100 full-time employees located in downtown Boston in a transit-accessible and bike-friendly office.

MAPC has a hybrid schedule, combining time in the office with remote work. Employees must reside within a commutable distance from MAPC’s Boston office. 

MAPC strongly supports the professional development of each staff person, believing their growth to be consistent with the best interests of MAPC and the region. We encourage all our staff to develop new ideas to make MAPC’s planning and policy work more relevant and impactful, and to adapt to changing times.

This is an opportunity to work in a dynamic, interdisciplinary, and innovative environment with professionals who are committed to building a more sustainable and equitable future for everyone who lives and works in Greater Boston. For more information about MAPC or MetroCommon2050, please visit

Responsibilities (including but not limited to)
  • Assist with arts, culture, heritage, and creative economy planning projects in collaboration with fellow MAPC planners, municipalities, and community stakeholders; these projects will include scoping, public engagement, facilitation, event planning, research, writing, as well as designing local zoning, permitting procedures, programs, and funding;
  • Coordinate workshops and trainings on arts, culture, heritage, and related topics for planners, community developers, community organizers, volunteer boards and committees, and artists;
  • Conduct research to expand and improve the collection and management of arts, culture, and heritage data; and research to improve local and state laws, regulations, policies, and programs that can help arts and culture to thrive;
  • Document Arts & Culture Department projects, tools, and lessons that can be shared on our educational platform, the MAPC Arts & Planning Toolkit or through the Arts & Culture Department newsletter;
  • Assist with integrating arts and culture into other local and regional planning projects, including the agency’s implementation of MetroCommon2050, the next regional plan for Metro Boston;
  • Conduct other activities as assigned to implement the work plan and expand the visibility and impact of the Arts & Culture Department and more broadly, the goals of MetroCommon2050.

Evening and occasional early morning and weekend events and local travel are a responsibility for this position. MAPC does not require that you have a vehicle; however, you must have a valid driver’s license and/or the ability to arrange transportation to meetings in different parts of the region. MAPC provides support for travel, including MBTA passes, Zipcar account and BlueBikes membership.

Candidates should have a Bachelor's degree in any of the following areas: community development, urban studies, urban history, community or regional planning, arts administration or related disciplines, such as landscape architecture, political science, geography, and similar. Preference will be given to candidates whose interests and background combine arts and culture with another area of expertise related to urban planning or community development. Experience working directly with artists, non-profit organizations, community-based groups, and/or local government is desired.

Successful candidates for this position will demonstrate all or most of the following:
  • Knowledge of or experience with one or more areas of arts and culture practice, such as: arts-based community development, cultural planning, cultural asset mapping, cultural economic development, creative placemaking, historic preservation and heritage, urban design, public art, and/or social practice art/socially engaged art;
  • Experience with community engagement, organizing, and/or facilitation and in working effectively with community-based groups, communities of color, and/or artists and arts organizations; 
  • Entrepreneurial work ethic, strong organizational skills, and attention to detail, including experience undertaking assigned work in a self-directed manner, meeting deadlines and budget limits;
  • Strong verbal and written presentation and communications skills;
  • Ability to work with people in a range of settings, including diverse neighborhoods in cities, suburban centers, and small or rural communities; and
  • Ability to work collaboratively in an interdisciplinary setting with colleagues as well as external partners.
  • Experience conducting research or working with collecting or working with qualitative or quantitative data, including data collected through participatory action research, ethnographic research, and other methods;
  • Skills in graphic design or web design; experience with software and platforms such as WordPress, Illustrator, Photoshop, InDesign, or social media platforms;
  • Knowledge of federal, state and local land use policy issues, laws, regulations, and programs.

Per MAPC COVID-19 Vaccine Policy, all employees must be fully vaccinated. This position will require the selected candidate to show proof of full vaccination against COVID-19, including the Bivalent booster. MAPC is an equal opportunity employer and will consider reasonable accommodation to those individuals who are unable to be vaccinated consistent with federal, state, and local law.  

Compensation and Benefits: 
The salary ranges from $53,000 to $58,000, depending on qualifications and experience. This is a full-time exempt position. MAPC offers excellent Massachusetts state employee benefits as well as a flexible, supportive, and family-friendly work environment and a commitment to continued professional development.

How to Apply: 
Apply online at The position is open until filled, and applications are reviewed on a rolling basis. Interested candidates should submit a cover letter and resume. Candidates selected to interview will be asked to submit three (3) references plus a sample of relevant writing or work product. Candidates must have legal authorization to work in the USA and a valid driver's license and/or the ability to arrange transportation to meetings in different parts of the region. MAPC participates in E-Verify, which is a federal program that helps us to determine work eligibility in the United States.

We believe that a staff with a range of perspectives, experiences, and skillsets strengthens our work. We are committed to building a more equitable workplace that allows staff with diverse backgrounds and identities to thrive, grow, and lead. For more information on MAPC’s culture of equity, see our Equity at MAPC page.