Courses in: Housing

Poverty, Inequality, and Policy (EMPA)

This course examines the nature and extent of poverty primarily in the U.S. but with a comparative perspective (developed countries in Europe). To start, this course will focus on how poverty is defined and measured. It will proceed to explore how conceptions of poverty are socially constructed and historically bounded; examine what the causes and consequences of poverty are and discuss how these are complex and interwoven; and show how people can experience poverty at different points in their life course—some groups experiencing poverty more so than others.

Financing Urban Government

This course explores the role of U.S. urban governments in the economy, their relationship to the state and federal governments, and the institutional parameters of devising and implementing sound public policy.  Both the sources and uses of funds will be considered in the context of different tax instruments, the relative merit of each tool and the implications for equity and efficiency of public policy.

Community Organizing (EMPA)

Community Organizing will provide an overview and introduction to the fundamentals of organizing to win, implement, monitor and sustain change in the private and public sectors.

History and Theory of Planning

This course examines key ideas in the history and theory of planning. We start with some challenges of 21st-century urbanism to activate our conversations about the history and theory of planning. Does the historical and theoretical apparatus of planning equip us to deal with 21st-century urban formations and problems? Are the forms of contemporary urbanism categorically different from those of the past? Are the techniques and methods of planning bound to the American context, or are they also suitable for other social and political contexts?

Transforming Cities: Public-Private Partnerships, Public Spaces, Politics & the Press

This course examines the special mix of tools, tactics, theories and trends that shape and transform cities.   It will be grounded in case studies that look at both successful and unsuccessful urban revitalization strategies in places ranging from Times Square (in different decades) to the Bronx River to Singapore to Atlantic City.  Seasoned guest speakers, who in the past have included “Broken Windows” author George Kelling, the Director of the Brownsville Partnership, a NYPost columnist, the Director of a Public Art initiative, a former Atlantic City public official, and the former Direct

Community Equity

This course introduces graduate students to topics in community financial justice and strategies for achieving equitable community development. Students will examine ways that communities have organized to gain access to capital; methods and mechanisms to ensure equitable development; and technical tools needed to secure and retain community assets in lower income urban neighborhoods and communities of color.

Topics in Housing and Community Development

This course explores the current state of housing and community development policy as well as approaches that lie on the horizon, with a specific eye toward how key policy drivers, the current political moment, and core stakeholders are likely to create and/or limit opportunities moving forward. The course will provide an overview of housing and community development policy and then turn to selected issues such as gentrification and efforts to combat racial inequality to examine these dynamics.

Community Organizing

Introduction to Community Organizing is for those who could imagine running national or local advocacy organizations that make change happen or anyone who wants to understand the art of community organizing. It will provide an overview of and training in contemporary community organizing practice in the United States. This includes defining what community organizing is and identifying its value base; exploring the strategies, tactics and activities of organizing; and thinking about marketing, language and evaluation.

Debt Financing and Management for Public Organizations

This Course will focus on the issuance and management of debt by state and local governments, nonprofit institutions and local authorities. The course will address the history and evolution of the capital markets through which municipal issuers borrow funds, primarily on a tax-exempt basis. The course will focus primarily on the issuance of long-term debt to support capital investment, but will also examine short-term borrowings as well.

Public Policy and Planning in New York

There is no profession more noble than public service, and no arena more exciting than New York. Our objective is to gain insight into how our city and state governments make decisions, informed by a foundational and wide-ranging understanding of the forces at work and issues that face policymakers today. I am teaching this class because of my longstanding—and ever-expanding—interest in the practice of public policy and a deeply held belief that the effectiveness of our government depends on the quality of those who serve in it.

Real Estate Finance

The course introduces students to the basic tools of real estate analysis and finance. The development and redevelopment of urban real estate, especially housing, is examined from a public policy perspective. Students will learn the acquisition and development process and master the basics of project-level real estate economics.

Land Use, Housing and Community Development Seminar

This interdisciplinary seminar brings together law, urban planning and public policy students to analyze historic and current trends in affordable housing, community development, land use, and housing finance.  We use New York City as a laboratory that is both unique from, and similar to, other American cities.  The course focuses on housing/community development policy, real estate and mortgage financing, subsidies, community participation, environmental impact, and neighborhood change such as gentrification and