Introduction to Local Economic Development

This course introduces students to local economic development from the perspective of urban planning.  Students learn about the theories, analytic frameworks and indicators used in the creation of local economic development policies in the US, and the role of planners in linking these policies to built environment outcomes.  Using the Boston region as a case study, students explore several different kinds of place-based strategies including the Seaport innovation district, the Downtown Crossing business improvement district, the BRA/EDIC Marine Industrial Park, and the Boston Convention and Exhibition Center.  Students are also exposed to economic development finance including the fundamentals of bond finance, tax increment financing, among others.  The course is delivered through a combination of lectures, case studies, guest speakers, and student presentations.  While there is no formal pre-requisite, previous coursework in economics is recommended.