Welcome from the Department Chair

Welcome to the Urban Policy and Planning website.

Our department was founded by the urban planner and activist Paul Davidoff in 1965, the same year that President Lyndon Johnson declared cities a national priority and created the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. Johnson chose Dr. Robert Weaver as HUD’s first secretary, making Weaver the first African American to ever serve in a federal cabinet position. After leaving his post in Washington, Weaver, an economist by training, joined our department as a Distinguished Professor, where he taught for eight years. Proud of its distinct heritage, our department remains committed to the ideal of social justice that was so clearly enunciated by these two historical figures.

Whether they take courses in our interdisciplinary undergraduate urban studies program or pursue degrees in one of our two graduate programs, our students are committed to making cities better places to live for all people, especially those marginalized by poverty or discrimination. Our graduate program in urban planning remains one of the best in the nation, and our recently revamped graduate program in urban policy and leadership is well-designed to equip professionals from a variety of disciplines to act as agents of change in cities here and abroad.

Take some time to get better acquainted with our faculty, programs, and activities. Our fourteen full-time faculty are actively engaged in teaching and cutting-edge research; our highly-qualified part-time practitioner-instructors are drawn from government and industry. Don’t hesitate to get in touch if you want to learn more.

Joseph P. Viteritti
Department Chair

Recent News & Activity

02.16.2023: Associate Professor Laura Wolf-Powers published an op-ed piece in the Chronicle of Higher Education on February 14, based on her recently published book University City [more]
02.16.2023: MS UPL alum Yudelka Tapia (2019) was sworn in as a member of the New York State Assembly for district 86 on February 5th [more]
02.16.2023: MUP alum Julia Fiore (2018) was featured in City & State, February 2, 2023 [more]
02.16.2023: Dr. Mehdi Heris was a co-author of a recently released research paper in The Lancet [more]
02.16.2023: Prof. John Chin’s NIH-funded research on illicit massage parlors in New York City and Los Angeles was cited in a recent USA Today article on the limitations of human trafficking laws [more]
02.16.2023: MUP alum Jeremiah Cox (2016) was featured in an article about changes to the Goshen, IN transit system [more]
02.16.2023: The Philadelphia Inquirer published an interview with Associate Prof. Laura Wolf-Powers about her book, University City: History, Race, & Community in the Era of the Innovation District, (January 3, 2023) [more]
02.16.2023: A report published by the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation highlighted Associate Professors Laura Wolf-Powers and Sigmund Shipp’s research partnership with the Brooklyn Communities Collaborative [more]
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