Housing & social stratification in america
Housing is a key site of social stratification. Race, class, gender, sexuality: all are enacted through our homes. Our homes provide access to our communities, and public goods like primary education are allocated less to families than to the occupants of houses. Housing is the key to wealth for the middle classes. Some families are able to use their homes to fund health care and elder care, unemployment and life insurance, or even vacations. Other families and individuals are unhoused. Many families are unable to find housing in their preferred city or neighborhood. In this course, we will investigate how policy, markets, and private actions are used to stratify society, with a particular application to race in America. We will develop structural frameworks to better understand the processes of stratification and identify sites of intervention. We will identify the ways federal and local policy shape housing markets to reflect, reinforce, and (very occasionally) combat social inequities. We will frame our work in terms of overlapping housing crises: gentrification, displacements, white flight, shortage, homelessness, and car-dependence. We will ground our work in historical and social context. We will write, and rewrite—extensively. And we will center in our writing and conversation the ways in which planning can further the goal of building the just city.
Microeconomics for Planners
Planning aims to mitigate and equitably redress crises, challenges, and problems. These challenges are structural. The social structures of race, gender, class, colonialism are determinative of the constraints imposed on individual actors, and upheld by their collected actions. In this course, we will develop a suite of tools from economic theory to understand these mutual processes of individual action and structural constraint. We will build out an understanding of producer theory from the collaborative possibilities and physical constraints that unfold as production is scaled up. We will pursue consumer theory as the process of individuals doing the best for themselves, their families, and their communities—subject to the sociostructural constraints under which they operate. We will apply these tools to sites of human interaction and social decision-making, such as markets. We will consider alternative frameworks of social welfare, with a specific focus on marginalization and crisis. Finally, we will consider common policy interventions, and discuss their implications under different constructions of welfare.
Planning aims to mitigate and equitably redress crises, challenges, and problems. These challenges are structural. The social structures of race, gender, class, colonialism are determinative of the constraints imposed on individual actors, and reified by their collected actions. In this course, we will use a suite of tools from economic theory to understand these mutual processes of individual action and structural constraint and investigate crises in search of opportunities for mitigation and reparation. We will investigate a variety of crises from throughout the various realms of planning, including (but not limited to): climate change & [in]action, disinvestment & gentrification, autocentricity & other legacies of the built environment, and the poverty driving rapid urbanization and the concomitant under-planning & informal settlement.
Graduates in 2020
Annie Calef — MCP
Jenny Chen — MCP
Stephen Erdman — MCP
Noah McDaniel — SB
Stephanie Peña (second reader) — MCP
Graduates in 2019
Alex Acuña — MCP
Alex Bob — MCP
Hannah Diaz — MCP
Stephanie Nuñez — SB
Morgan Augillard (second reader) — MCP
Yazmin Guzman (second reader) — MCP