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Economic Development Concentration

Economic Development is the field of planning that focuses on the economic growth, prosperity, evitalization and prevention of decline of new and older neighborhoods, communities, and cities. It is concerned with the functions and activities of private sector development in cities and suburbs, the role of local government agencies in the growth and improvement of their jurisdictions, and the positive and negative effects that physical and demographic growth or decline can have on communities. Students choosing economic development as their area of specialization do not need to have a background in economics, but will have the opportunity to take additional courses on economic development topics outside of the School of Planning, in programs such as Economics, Geography, and Real Estate. This specialization is especially appropriate for students with interests in neighborhood development, community revitalization, historic preservation, housing development, retail and service development, industrial development, Neighborhood Business District and Main Street revitalization, First Suburbs redevelopment, and policies and programs to ensure economic growth, new investments and continuing economic progress in communities and cities.

Required Courses

  • 23PLAN710 Issues in Economic Development (4 credit hours) Winter Quarter, First Year
  • 23PLAN713 Economic Development Methods I (4 credit hours) Spring Quarter, First Year
  • 23PLAN719 Economic Development Policies (4 credit hours) Fall Quarter, Second Year

Recommended Core Methods Courses

Recommended Electives (Choose Two)


  • 23PLAN630 Housing Systems
  • 23PLAN621, 622, 623, 624 Special Topics (when relevant)
  • 23PLAN628 Introduction to Historic Preservation
  • 23PLAN717 Land Use Controls
  • 23PLAN--- Economic Development Workshop
  • 23PLAN715 Economic Development Methods II
  • 23PLAN780 Introduction to Geographic Information Systems
  • Economics
  • 15ECON506 Urban Economic Problems
  • 15ECON575 Economic Development
  • 15ECON592 Economics and the Environment
  • 15ECON593 Economics of Natural Resources and Sustainability
  • 15ECON660 International Trade Theory
  • Sociology
  • 15SOC705, 706 Intermediate Social Statistics
  • Geography
  • 15GEOG772 Seminar in Political Geography
  • 15GEOG778 Seminar in Geographic Development

African-American Studies

  • 15AFAM535 Seminar in Black Social Organization
  • 15AFAM536 Urban Black Community Development

Related Areas of Further Specialization

Students interested in pursuing a more in depth study of economic development can chose to take further courses in one or more of the following areas:

  • Inner City Poverty and Unemployment, and Community Development
  • Real Estate Development
  • Metropolitan and Regional Development
  • International Development
  • Sustainable Development

Elective courses under each of these areas would include:

Inner City Poverty and Unemployment, and Community Development

  • 23PLAN630: Housing Systems
  • ECON 506 Urban Economic Problems
  • ECON 650 Microeconomic Theory I
  • ECON 651 Microeconomic Theory II
  • GEOG 522 Urban Problems
  • GEOG 582 GIS/Urban Economic Applications
  • Real Estate Development
  • 23PLAN630 Housing Systems
  • ECON 506 Urban Economic Problems
  • RE 391 Principles of Real Estate
  • RE 395 Real Estate Finance
  • RE 492 Real Estate Appraisal
  • RE 593 Special Topics in Real Estate
  • FIN 821 Financial Management

Metropolitan and Regional Development

  • 23PLAN801 Metropolitan Dynamics
  • ECON 655 Macroeconomic Theory
  • ECON 541 Comparative Economic Systems
  • ECON 575 Economic Development
  • GEOG 771 Seminar in Urban Geography
  • GEOG 730 Seminar in Regional Geography
  • GEOG 784 Seminar in Location Theory
  • GEOG 792 Seminar in Geographical Methods

International Development

  • 23PLAN670 Planning Issues in Developing Nations
  • 23PLAN779 International Development Policy
  • ECON 551 International Economics
  • MARKETING 830 International Marketing
  • ASIA 583 Independent Work in Asian Studies
  • AFAM 460 Cultures of Africa

Sustainable Development

  • 23PLAN 603 Environmental Resource Analysis
  • 23PLAN 606 Environmental Processes and Programs
  • 23PLAN 609 Environmental Planning and Policy
  • 23PLAN--- Sustainable Development
  • 15GEOG770 Seminar in Environmental Geography
  • 15ECON592 Economics and the Environment
  • 15ECON593 Economics of Natural Resources and Sustainability
  • Relevant Civil and Environmental Engineering Classes