Urban Design Politics OpenCourseWare: MIT's Graduate Level Free Online Course on the Political Aspects of Urban Design

Published Jan 21, 2009

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Examine the ways political and social factors contribute to city design with this free OpenCourseWare from MIT. 'Urban Design Politics' offers an introduction to the political considerations involved in city planning. While this OpenCourseWare is open to the public, some coursework in Architectural or Urban Studies may be helpful in understanding the material presented.

Urban Design Politics: Course Specifics

Degree Level Free Audio VideoDownloads
Graduate Yes No No Yes

Lectures/NotesStudy MaterialsTests/Quizzes
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Urban Design Politics: Course Description

The focus of 'Urban Design Politics' OpenCourseWare is to understand how plans for a city can be influenced by various fractions and how values of a political nature can be incorporated into the final design. The course investigates the design of a city from various viewpoints that include historical, philosophical, gender-based, economical, class-based and anthropological. The course looks at cases involving designs created in extreme (Nazi Germany) and less extreme (modern day public housing) political situations as well as 'urban resilience' - total rebuilding after an unexpected disaster. MIT Prof. Lawrence Vale taught the original on-campus course. This graduate-level course, intended for students majoring in Architecture or Urban Studies, was presented in a seminar format.

This course offers a downloadable zip file that includes reading lists, course assignments, images, examples of student term papers and other study materials from the original course. If you would like to learn more about this subject, visit the politics of urban design course page.

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