All Academic Programs



Community Service Fellowships Provide Experience Locally and Abroad for MUPs

This fellowship program is open to students from across the school and attracts a large number of planning students. Fellows worked on Cambridge’s bike infrastructure, affordable housing in Somerville, disaster management in Thailand and much more. The recent work of the 2012 MUP fellows has been highlighted in GSD news.

Read about how community service fellows gain firsthand planning experience

Read about the International Travel Community Service Fellowship Program 2012


Core Studio Investigates Classic Plans

The final review of the Master of Urban Planning first semester core studio was all about big visions. Studio instructor Judith Grant Long (associate professor of urban planning) said, “Our planning students produced a very impressive exhibition—the gallery was multi-media, interactive, and also critically reflective. A terrific day spent celebrating and debating urban planning at the GSD.”

What's the Big Idea? Read about the final review of the Master of Urban Planning first semester core studio


Real World Planning

The second semester MUP core studio, currently under way this spring, is working in the inner suburb of Malden on a real project collaborating with the city and the Metropolitan Area Planning Council. Students are engaging in a multifaceted participation strategy and proposing strategies for further developing the Malden Square area.


Option Studios Take MUPs around the World

During the fall semester, many MUPs took option studios that allowed them to investigate design issues all over the world.

Read the summary of the studios that was featured in the GSD news



Eric Belsky

Eric Belsky, managing director of the Joint Center and a lecturer in Urban Planning and Design published the working papers “The Dream Lives On: The Future of Homeownership in America” and “The State of Mexico’s Housing: Recent Progress and Continued Challenges”.  He contributed chapters to two books, “Crossing Over to an Improved Era of Community Development” (in the book Investing in What Works for America’s Communities) and “Planning for Inclusive and Sustainable Urban Development” (in the book State of the World 2012).  He also served as an advisor to the Bipartisan Policy Center’s Housing Commission, and travelled around the country giving presentations and taking part in roundtable discussions at FHA, Fannie Mae, and other housing industry organizations.


Neil Brenner

Neil Brenner's most recent publication is "Theses on urbanization," which appeared in Public Culture, 25, 1, 2013, which has also been translated into Spanish in the January 2013 issue of the Argentinian journal Nueva Sociedad.  His pamphlet The Afterlives of Neoliberalism (co-authored with Jamie Peck and Nik Theodore) was published in the Civic City Cahiers (CCC) series in late 2012 by the Architectural Association's Bedford Press.  Brenner recently gave a lecture, "The urban age in question," at the Graham Foundation's Chicago Expander / Archeworks events series.


Diane Davis

Professor Diane Davis continues her research on Latin American cities as well as on  urban planning theory and practice.  This spring she has articles on urban megaprojects forthcoming in the Journal of Urban Affairs and in a book titled Urban Megaprojects: A World Wide View (edited by Gerardo del Cerro, Emerald Press); a chapter on rescaling state security practices in response to urban violence in Mexico City (co-authored with GSD student Guillermo Ruiz) forthcoming in Policing Cities: Securitization and Regulation in the 21st Century (edited by Randy K. Lippert and Kevin Walby, Routlege);  an article on the built environmental foundations of insurgent urbanism in cities around the globe forthcoming in Thresholds; and a chapter on the role of   imagination as a method for generating knowledge of possible urban futures (with Tali Hatuka) forthcoming in Research Methods in Planning (edited by Elisabete A. Silva, Patsy Healey, and Neil Harris, Royal Town Planning Institute).


Susan Fainstein

Retired professor Susan Fainstein delivered a lecture on “The Argument for Just Outcomes”to the annual APA-Massachusetts certified planning schools event at the GSD. Read about Fainstein's feature on "The Just City"


Ann Forsyth

Professor Ann Forsyth has recently published articles in the areas of sustainable and healthy communities (full details about collaborators are available on her web site These articles include: Defining Suburbs. Journal of Planning Literature (27, 3: 270-281)’ Do Adolescents Who Live or Go to School Near Fast-Food Restaurants Eat More Frequently From Fast Food Restaurants?  Health and Place (18: 1261-1269); Reliability Testing of the PABS (Pedestrian and Bicycling Survey) Method. Journal of Physical Activity and Health (9, 5: 677-688); and Creating a Replicable, Cross-Platform Buffering Technique: The Sausage Network Buffer for Measuring Food and Physical Activity Built Environments. International Journal of Health Geographics. (11:14).


Michael Hooper

Assistant Professor Michael Hooper recently published a paper on the impacts of forced eviction and resettlement in Tanzania in the Journal of Planning Education and Research. He also published findings from this research in the journal Forced Migration Review, the online publication The Global Urbanist, and in a recent GSD volume, Instigations, celebrating the 75th anniversary of the GSD. With funding from the Harvard Academy for International and Area Studies, he and a group of GSD graduate students are excited to have completed eight months of data collection on post-disaster reconstruction in Haiti. 


Rahul Mehrotra

Prof Mehrotra led an interdisciplinary team with the South Asia Institute at Harvard University , with students form the GSD to study the kumbh Mela the project was called Mapping the Ephemeral Mega City .

In Feb 2013, Prof Mehrotra also installed an exhibition called the Kinetic City at the British School at Rome and conducted lectures in Rome and London on the theme.


Joyce Rosenthal

Joyce Rosenthal organized and moderated a GSD panel discussion on post-Superstorm Sandy recovery on February 21st, that explored emergent issues in planning and design for creating coastal resilience in NYC neighborhoods; the panel featured presentations by Walter Meyer, founding principal of Local Office Landscape Architecture; Thaddeus Pawlowski, Associate Urban Designer for the Office of the Chief Urban Designer of NYC; Abby Suckle, President of cultureNOW; and Eddie Bautista, Director of the NYC Environmental Justice Alliance.  View the panel discussion here. Rosenthal's  chapter on "Climate Adaptive Planning for Preventing Heat-related Health Impacts in New York City" was published in Knieling, J; Leal Filho, W (eds.) Climate Change Governance, Berlin/Heidelberg: Springer, 2013, with Dana Brechwald, MUP 2011. 


Peter Rowe

Professor Peter Rowe traveled in October of 2012 to Seoul, South Korea to deliver the keynote address at the Urban Design Asia Conference on the future of the Asian city. He also conducted field work in Japan and South Korea as a part of his Korean and East Asian Urban Research Program, sponsored by the Eugene Corporation. Later, in December of 2012, he went to Shanghai and Kunming in China for talks with local planning officials.


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