Sustainable Cities (Pup 190/sos 111)

This undergraduate course introduces students to key sustainability concepts and the sustainable and resilient development of cities in global, regional, and local contexts. The course covers the environmental, socio-economic, and structural problems of contemporary cities and how they impact natural systems and communities. After an introduction to the history and philosophy of sustainability and cities, students learn about specific sustainability challenges and potential solutions in different urban systems and sectors (e.g. transportation, water, energy). Students leave the course with a solid foundation in the theory and practice of urban sustainability and topics such as the history of cities, environmental justice, climate change, sustainable design, and more.

Planning for sustainable Communities (PUP 548)

This graduate course introduces students to different approaches to understanding, planning, implementing, and measuring urban sustainability and resilience. Over the course of the semester, students also gain practical, real-world experience evaluating and planning for sustainability in the Phoenix Metro area by developing a sustainability assessment for a local community through the Project Cities Program. Students learn about the latest approaches to defining and assessing urban sustainability and resilience, including specific problems and best practices for various aspects of community sustainability. Class discussions draw on case studies from around the world, and students review an existing sustainability or resilience plan for a community of their choice. Students then apply what they have learned to develop a sustainability assessment for a local community, evaluating the city’s achievements to date, identifying the challenges it faces in becoming more sustainable and resilient, and specific recommendations for improvement. Students work alone or in small groups on a particular aspect of sustainability (the built environment, climate and energy, health and safety, etc.), ultimately producing a chapter of a final report, which is presented to the city.