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Chicago faces many questions about its urban future:

  • How can urban communities be made more sustainable?
  • What should the city do with its old industrial sites?
  • Can Chicago’s transportation networks modernize?
  • Where should the city invest its economic development dollars?
  • What is the role for community organizations in these debates?

These questions are at the center of the Master of Arts in Sustainable Urban Development (MASUD). With classes in Chicago’s Loop and Lincoln Park campuses, this 13-course (52 credit hour) interdisciplinary graduate program integrates academics with practical learning. Instructors draw on the city’s resources and incorporate expert guest speakers, site visits, and industry-standard Geographic Information Systems (GIS) digital mapping and spatial analysis technology. A genuinely interdisciplinary program that incorporates perspectives from fields such as Urban Planning, Public Policy, Geography, Sociology, Public Service Management, Environmental Studies and Real Estate, the MASUD introduces students to sustainable urban development policy, data collection and analysis, planning processes, strategies for implementation, modes of communication, and evaluation mechanisms. The first year of study provides a theoretical background as well as an introduction to the technologies used in urban development and planning. The second year of the curriculum is dedicated to teaching advanced courses and completing a required internship and a capstone/portfolio component.

The MA in Sustainable Urban Development may also be expanded to include select graduate certificate programs covering particular areas of interest.  Students participating in a combined MA/certificate program should consult with their academic advisor to determine what coursework might count toward both programs.  A separate application process for the certificate is required.  Students who are interested in any of the following combination programs should contact the Graduate Student Services Office for additional information.

  • Sustainable Urban Development + Community Development Certificate
  • Sustainable Urban Development + Global Health Certificate
  • Sustainable Urban Development + Metro Planning and Development Certificate
  • Sustainable Urban Development + Public Health Certificate
  • Sustainable Urban Development + Social Research Certificate
Degree Requirements 52 hours
   Total hours required    52 hours