Lawrence Susskind

Ford Professor of Urban and Environmental Planning

Lawrence Susskind is the Ford Professor of Urban and Environmental Planning and his research interests focus on the theory and practice of negotiation and dispute resolution, the practice of public engagement in local decision-making, cybersecurity for critical urban infrastructure, entrepreneurial negotiation, global environmental treaty-making, the resolution of science-intensive policy disputes, renewable energy policy, water equity in older American cities, climate change adaptation, socially-responsible real estate development and the land claims of Indigenous Peoples. Professor Susskind is the author or co-author of twenty books including, most recently, Environmental Problem-Solving (Anthem), Managing Climate Risks in Coastal Communities: Strategies for Engagement, Readiness and Adaptation (Anthem), the second edition of Environmental Diplomacy (Oxford Press), Good for You, Great for Me (Public Affairs Press), Water Diplomacy (Resources for the Future), Built to Win (Harvard Business School Publishing), Multiparty Negotiation (Sage), Breaking Robert's Rules (Oxford), The Consensus Building Handbook (Sage), and Dealing with An Angry Public (Free Press). Professor Susskind is Director of the MIT Science Impact Collaborative ( He is Founder of the Consensus Building Institute, a Cambridge-based not-for-profit company that provides mediation services in complex resource management disputes around the world. He also was one of the Co-founders of the interuniversity Program on Negotiation at Harvard Law School, where he now directs the MIT-Harvard Public Disputes Program, serves as Vice Chair for Instruction, and leads PON’s Master Classes in Negotiation. He is the recipient of ACSP’s prestigious Educator of the Year Award and recipient of MIT’s Award for Digital Instruction. MIT Administration recently named Professor Susskind as MIT's representative to the New America Foundation's Public Interest Technology University Network (PIT-UN).

With MITx and MITxPRO, Professor Susskind has developed six current online courses: Negotiation, Power and Influence; Entrepreneurial Negotiation: The MIT Way; Cybersecurity for Critical Urban Infrastructure; Negotiating to Create Value: The Mutual Gains Approach; Health Care Negotiations: Better Outcomes for Health Care Professionals, and Socially-Responsible Real Estate Development.


Short commentary on questions, challenges, and topics in urban and environmental planning, negotiation and dispute resolution, consensus building, political conflict, educational administration, pedagogical innovation.

Science Impact Collaborative

Action Research Lab focused on public engagement in science diplomacy,  indigenous environmental planning, renewable energy facility siting, cybersecurity for critical infrastructure, water equity and justice, Arctic fisheries, and climate adaptation in coastal communities.