In recent years, urban planning and public health professionals have recognized the role the planning profession plays in sustaining community health. During much of the twentieth century, public health professionals believed that the key to community health was an individual’s health. If we focus on individuals, and improve their health, we would improve the community’s health. However, starting in the 1970s, the context or environment in which individuals live their lives, make their behavioral decisions, once again was recognized as influencing health outcomes. Concerns about tobacco and lead, then obesity, have reinforced theoretical concepts about the role of environment in sustaining individual health.
This course examines the complicated relationship of health and environment by exploring the development, conceptualization, and practice of community health planning over the last generation. The course will examine community health planning from a variety of perspectives, including urban design, transportation, social/community, and economic development. The course assignments revolve around the practice of community health planning. In class, we will discuss theory and conceptualization, while in the assignments, you will be applying tools and concepts in the field.
RGL 209, Wednesday, 2:00-5:20pm
While humans have been planning cities since the beginning of the urban era, only recently has a distinct profession of (city and) urban planning emerged. Understanding the history of a profession is an important component of any professional education. This course provides an overview of planning history, focusing on the twentieth-century and the United States but drawing on examples from around the world.
RGL 100, 10-11:50am
We live in an urban world. The number of urban residents worldwide is already more than half, and it is constantly growing. The lives and activities of public policy analysts, planners, government officials, real estate developers, community organizers, and business leaders are shaped by this metropolitan world.
This course examines the twentieth and twenty-first century urban world as the context for policy and planning. We will explore the historical development of the urban world, its spatial and economic structure, its natural and human environments, the demographic and social processes that drive the ongoing transformation of the places we live, and the policies and regulations that mediate our dreams and aspirations.
Students will leave the course with:
1)General knowledge of history, economics, politics, and policy-making of the urban world;
2) Ability to relate the American urban society to that of the surrounding world;
3) A better understanding of the evolving spatial structure of the urban place;
4) An expanded comprehension of how race, gender, and class shape urban society.
RGL 101, Tuesdays/Thursdays, 10-11:50am
Community health planning is a rapidly growing area of expertise in which professionals work with neighborhood residents, community institutions, and government agencies to identify obstacles to improving health and opportunities for overcoming those obstacles. The course will teach students specific skills in community assessment and analysis, and introduce them to people and organizations actively trying to increase public participation and to influence public policy decision-making.
This course engages students in these efforts by exploring the historical foundations and current events in community health planning and policy. Numerous groups have sprung up to try to change neighborhood conditions, mobilize residents, and influence health policy debates. The course will introduce students to methods for identifying neighborhood strengths and weaknesses, to be a part of mobilization efforts, and to understand contemporary health policy debates.
Students will be given the skills necessary to initiate a community assessment and analysis. Class sessions will be devoted to teaching students how to find information about specific places from the United States Census, health organizations such as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the California State Department of Health Services. Further, we will discuss surveying community assets and interviewing community residents in focus groups and community dialogues.
While humans have been planning cities since the beginning of the urban era, only recently has a distinct profession of (city and) urban planning emerged and a fuller understanding of the role of real estate development become apparent. This course provides an overview of urban history, focusing on the interaction of urban planning and real estate development.
RGL 100, Monday/Wednesday, 10-11:50am
This course is required of all Ph.D. students in the School of Policy, Planning, and Development and is open to students who have completed the Ph.D. prerequisites, core courses and screening. My intention is that you will have fun and learn about teaching. That will only be possible if we all commit the same energy and dedication to the course.
Students will leave the course with:
(1) Teaching dimension of the role of the scholar,
(2) Theoretical and practical approaches to learning and teaching,
(3) Methods of designing, implementing, and evaluating classroom experiences, and
(4) Application to professional education related to policy, planning, and development.
RGL 209, Selected Mondays, 6-8:20pm
Far too often planning is defined in terms of physical structures and abstract economics. Planning’s central concern is people, and the society that they create. This course examines the social context of planning, especially the ways in which race and ethnicity, gender, and class shape people’s experience within the city, and how social attitudes towards others affect the planning profession. Specifically, we are going to look at some transcendental issues — ones that could be defined differently worldwide, but are present in some form virtually everywhere — such as discrimination, poverty, and identity, and discuss how those are manifested in the social and physical landscapes of the city.
That said, this course is not a history of social planning, nor a sociology of the city. Instead, it is a rather idiosyncratic approach to understanding the complex inter-relationship of urban landscapes and the people who live in them. The goals we aim to achieve are:
(1) Illuminate some of the obstacles to good community planning,
(2) Understand through your contributions whether social issues transcend national
(3) Illustrate the importance of examining the societal context in which planning
(4) Test some skills and methods used in assessing communities and “improving”
While we will use Los Angeles as a prism through which to look at these issues, the intention is to draw upon the broader experiences of class members and the readings to check the local focus against a national and international awareness. For instance, we will discuss crime as a community issue. However, crime in America is quite different than in other places. How it is different, and why it is different are questions we want to engage. How does that affect, or does it affect, physical planning precepts in those different places?
Since we could not possibly cover all the appropriate topics included under the rubric social context of planning, I have structured the course to allow students to delve into topics of interest to them while everyone examines some fundamental concerns. We will achieve this goal by having regular class readings, lectures and discussions as well as group projects assessing neighborhoods with specific planning issues. I have kept the class readings as slim as possible to allow the groups to have time to research their neighborhoods, related planning topics, and potential solutions. This exercise is also good training for the comprehensive examination.
RGL 101, Monday/Wednesday