Lincolnopolis: Landscape Urbanization at the Interburban Frontier

According to Professor Alan Berger's "Culture Now" project, "The United States is a suburban nation and will likely remain so for many years. The expansion of the suburban population now forms a supermajority of the total U.S. metropolitan area population (62%). Despite this fact, urban pundits including 'planner and designer' biases still try to emulate 19th Century European compact city forms and mobility models for the American landscape. Antithetical to urbanist polemics, we know that critical characteristics of today's U.S.

The Future Olympic Village

The Olympics are a special time when the world comes together to celebrate the excitement of sport. But the planning, creation and operation of the games also gives us a rare opportunity to imagine what the city of tomorrow might have in store for us. For a new online project, MIT's SENSEable City Lab teamed up with GE to put forth a vision of what systems and technologies could grace the Future Olympic Village.

Reframing International Development

In April, 2012, students and faculty in the department held a two-day conference under the title "Reframing International Development." William Cobbett of the Cities Alliance provided opening remarks, and Antanas Mockus, former Mayor of Bogotá, Colombia, presented a keynote address on "International Interdisciplinary Development." The conference also featured a number of panel discussions on both the history and future of international development.

Sanyal Named MacVicar Faculty Fellow

Four professors including DUSP's own Bish Sanyal have been named 2011 MacVicar Faculty Fellows for their outstanding undergraduate teaching, mentoring and educational innovation. In addition to Professor Sanyal, this year's honorees include Christopher Schuh, of the Department of Materials Science and Engineering; and George Verghese and Patrick Winston, both of the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science.

America's Transportation Future Meets Politics and the Federal Budget

DUSP Professor Xavier de Sousa Briggs recently presented as part of the Transportation@MIT speaker series. The title of his talk was "America's Transportation Future Meets Politics and the Federal Budget: An MIT Professor's Experience Inside the Obama White House," and it was captured on TechTV (and embedded below.)

Susskind's New Book Details Model for Sharing Water

From the American Southwest to the Middle East, water is a highly contested resource: Many neighboring nations, and several states in the United States, have fought decades-long battles to control water supplies. And that need for water only seems likely to increase. "Out in the world, there's growing demand for fresh water, especially where there is urban development," says Larry Susskind, the Ford Professor of Urban and Environmental Planning in MIT's Department of Urban Studies and Planning. "At the same time, climate change is altering in unexpected ways how much water there is.

Spring 2012 EPP Newsletter: DUSP & Energy

The Spring 2012 newsletter of the Environmental Planning and Policy Group (EPP) is now available at

DUSP Students Win DOE "Better Buildings Case" Competition

An interdisciplinary team of ten MIT students won two awards in the Better Buildings Case Competition sponsored by the DOE. Nineteen schools competed and each team was assigned two cases; the results, announced by DOE Secretary Steven Chu at the White House, revealed that MIT won both its cases, the only team to do so. DUSP participants included Elena Alschuler, Brendan McEwen, Nikhil Nadkarni, Christopher Jones and Wesley Look, plus Kate Goldstein from architecture, Nan Zhao from the Media Lab, and Patrick Flynn, Neheet Trivedi, and Michael Zallow from Sloan.

Joann Carmin: Latin American and Asian Cities Lead in Climate Change Planning

An MIT survey shows, 95 percent of major cities in Latin America are planning for climate change, compared to only 59 percent of such cities in the United States. Leadership on climate adaptation "can come from cities of many different sizes and ilks," says JoAnn Carmin, an associate professor at DUSP and lead author of the survey's report. While international climate policy measures -- such as potential agreements limiting greenhouse gas emissions -- require agreement among national governments, Carmin says, "cities are able to make some important strides in this area.

Reinventing Planned Cities

Students from the School of Architecture + Planning (SA+P) traveled to Israel in January, 2012, for a 10-day collaborative workshop with Tel Aviv University's Laboratory for Contemporary Urban Design (TAU LCUD).