Courses Typically Offered in the Spring

Management and Leadership

Management and Leadership is designed to empower you with the skills you will need to make meaningful change in the world—whether you care about bike lanes, criminal justice, prenatal care, community development, urban planning, social investment, or something else. Whatever your passion, you can have an impact by leading and managing. In this course, you will enhance the technical, interpersonal, conceptual, and political skills needed to run effective and efficient organizations embedded in diverse communities, policy arenas, sectors, and industries.

Management Consulting for Public Service Organizations (EMPA)

Management consultants work in all corners of the public and nonprofit sectors on every imaginable topic—from organizational strategy to technology implementation, education to migration. But what is management consulting? Why do so many public service organizations rely on it? What skills and experience do you need to be a management consultant?  And how much good can management consulting really do for the public and nonprofit sectors?

Truth, Accountability, and Reparations

The global movement for truth, accountability, and reparations has a history that begins with the human rights movement in Latin America and includes (ongoing) struggles to address genocide, human rights abuse, and crimes against humanity in countries as diverse as Liberia, East Timor, Argentina, South Africa, and the United States.

The Practice of Adaptive Leadership (EMPA)

What does it mean to lead? This course is an exploration of the ideas and theories developed at Harvard University by Ron Heifetz and Marty Linsky over the last 30 years about the work of leaders in mobilizing groups to act to solve complex and seemingly intractable problems. We will contrast Heifetz and Linsky’s notion of leadership with the more traditional theories of leadership.

Leading Change in Healthcare Organizations: Practical Strategies

In today’s healthcare environment, adapting to change is not enough. Healthcare executives and managers are tasked with leading change and driving results. This course will cover practical strategies leaders and emerging leaders can use to anticipate, plan, and respond to policy, regulatory, and practice changes in the industry.

Topics in Public Policy: Data, Evidence, Ethics, and Bias in an AI World

The importance of data and evidence in making decisions is critical to success in both the private and the public sector. The role of Artificial Intelligence (AI) in making sense of the vast amounts of data available to make evidence-based decisions has been highlighted by the establishment of a National Artificial Intelligence Initiative and by its pervasive use in virtually all parts of the economy and society. Yet there is potentially a dark side to the implementation of AI, particularly given its widespread use in criminal justice and immigration.

Data and AI Strategies for Social Impact Organizations

Data plays an increasingly important role in powering today’s enterprises, governments and society as a whole. With the rapid pace of innovation, data science, advanced analytics and Artificial Intelligence (AI) are becoming increasingly central and critical to business today. Over time, social impact organizations will deem these tools as core to achieving their mission.

Equitable Community Engagement

Key to the planning profession is engagement. Most of a planner’s work necessitates engagement of institutions and of people in order to effectuate change, and change (or prevention thereof) is the planner’s currency. Specifically this course will look at community engagement, or engagement of the public within a defined geography. What is community? How is it defined? What does it look and feel like? And how does it manifest itself, or not, as part of the planning process? Communities in the United States are rarely equitable, particularly as it relates to planning.

Operating Social Enterprises

This course will provide a comprehensive overview and step by step approach to the most critical aspects of operating social enterprises. This course will put students in the shoes of the social entrepreneur, social enterprise or operations manager, using detailed examples and activities from a real-world social enterprise, as well as best practices from targeted case studies addressing key course topics. For this semester, the course will feature the Professor’s experience with building and operating a social enterprise in the peanut agricultural value chain in Haiti.

Emergencies, Disasters, and Cities

This course introduces students to the discipline of emergency management to better understand the urban planning and public service approaches necessary to prepare for, respond to, recover from and mitigate future emergency and disaster impacts. Focusing primarily on natural disasters, the course uses case study examples and recent events to expound upon the historical and conceptual frameworks that have and continue to shape this field.

Financial and Impact Modeling Using Excel

Increasingly, as the field of impact investing develops worldwide, leaders in the social field are adopting tools from their counterparts in the private sector. One of the most widely used and useful tools is the spreadsheet-based projection model of an individual enterprise. These forecasts if an organization’s financial performance and anticipated social impact are used to develop organizations’ strategies, to raise money and make investment decisions, and to measure performance against established expectations.

Public Speaking Masterclass: the Art and Science of Ideas

We've all seen bad presentations; many of us have given a few ourselves. But the reason they go wrong is often not what we think. Communicating ideas effectively, in a way that is both compelling and memorable, is hard. And understanding the basic components of how humans connect with ideas and experience inspiration is key to crafting a powerful message.