The Department of Urban Studies and Planning, established in 1932, was the second planning department in the U.S. and today is one of the largest planning departments nationally. DUSP excels at theorizing from practice and is particularly interested in how decisions are implemented and the impacts and benefits on those affected.

The department offers degree programs in the five specialization areas: City Design and Development (CDD), Environmental Policy Group (EPG), Housing, Community, and Economic Development (HCED), International Development and Regional Planning (IDRP) and Planning Support Systems (PSS). There are also two non-degree programs, the Center for Reflective Community Practice (CRCP) for mid-career community activists and the Special Program for Urban and Regional Studies (SPURS) for mid-career professionals in developing countries.

A wide range of field-based opportunities are available for students to work in collaboration with faculty on real-world planning problems. This unique tie between theoretical academic studies and field-based action research is one of the continuing allures of the program.

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