All Academic Programs

Housing and Neighborhood Development

Concentration Advisors: Ann Forsyth and Peter Rowe

Download the Housing and Neighborhood Development Concentration memo (PDF)    

This Area of Concentration is for those students who are interested in the planning, development and regulation of housing resources and their surrounding neighborhoods. Planners who choose this concentration may envision themselves working in the public sector as policy makers, program administrators or development facilitators or in the non-profit or for-profit sector as developers, community activists or consultants. These students are interested in shaping the part of the built environment that provides the setting for the residential and closely related functions of the city.

Because housing is a vital social as well as economic element of the city, a wide range of courses is relevant to this work. Concentrators may choose to focus on aspects of the work as diverse as housing policy, market analysis, physical design and planning, real estate finance, the development process, community engagement, implementation strategies and regulatory regimens. Neighborhoods are complex parts of the metropolitan environment, requiring a wide range of skills. This element of the concentration may include work on many of the topics listed above as well as land use regulation, urban design, demographic and economic analysis, local politics and related disciplines such as transportation, infrastructure, retail and social networks.

Courses which are pre-approved for the Housing and Neighborhood Development Concentration requirement are listed below.  This list is indicative only—the official list is on the PDF attached to this page.

At the GSD


  • GSD 5326 Housing and Urbanization in the United States
  • GSD 5336 New Spaces of Housing (module 2)
  • GSD 5476 Housing Delivery Systems in the United States


  • GSD 5201 Urban Politics, Planning, and Development
  • GSD 5337: Housing and Urbanization II: Global Cities
  • GSD 1505 Mexico City and the Production of Housing (cannot double count as a studio option)
  • GSD 5473 Housing Policy in the United States: The Intersection of the Public and Private Sectors
  • GSD 5490 Affordable and Mixed-Income Housing Development, Finance, and Management


  • MIT 11.483 Housing & Land Use in Rapidly Urbanizing Regions

Other courses may be approved with the permission of one of the Concentration Advisors.

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