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Growth and Structure of Cities

Students may complete a major or minor in Growth and Structure of Cities. Within the major, students may complete a concentration in environmental studies and Latin American and Iberian studies (Haverford). Students may enter the 3-2 Program in City and Regional Planning, offered in cooperation with the University of Pennsylvania.


Juan Manuel Arbona, Assistant Professor
Jeffrey A. Cohen, Senior Lecturer
Carola Hein, Associate Professor and Acting Director
John C. Keene, Visiting Professor
Gary W. McDonogh, Professor and Director (on leave 2006-07)
Sam Olshin, Visiting Studio Critic
Ingrid Steffensen, Lecturer
Ellen Stroud, Assistant Professor
Daniela Holt Voith, Senior Lecturer

The interdisciplinary growth and structure of cities major challenges the student to understand the dynamic relationship of urban spatial organization and the built environment to politics, economics, cultures and societies. Core introductory classes present analytic approaches that explore the changing forms of the city over time and analyze the variety of ways through which men and women have recreated urban life through time and across cultures. With these foundations, students pursue their interests through classes in planning, architecture, urban social and economic relations, urban history and the environmental conditions of urban life. Advanced seminars bring together these discussions by focusing on specific cities and topics.

Major Requirements

A minimum of 15 courses (11 courses in Cities and four allied courses) are required to complete the major. Two introductory courses (185, 190) balance formal and sociocultural approaches to urban form and the built environment, and introduce crosscultural and historical comparison of urban development. The introductory sequence should be completed with a broader architectural survey course (253, 254, 255) and an intensive writing course (229 or substitute). These courses should be completed as early as possible in the first and second years; at least two of them must be taken by the end of the first semester of the sophomore year.

In addition to these introductory courses, each student selects six elective courses within the Cities Program, including cross-listed courses. At least two must be at the 300 level. In the senior year, a third advanced course is required. Most students join together in a research seminar, 398. Occasionally, however, after consultation with the major advisers, the student may elect another 300-level course or a program for independent research. This is often the case with double majors.

Finally, each student must identify four courses that represent additional expertise to complement her work in the major. These may include courses such as physics and calculus for architects, special skills in design, language or regional interests. Any minor, concentration or second major also fulfills this requirement.

Both the Cities Program electives and the four or more related courses outside the program must be chosen in close consultation with the major advisers in order to create a strongly coherent sequence and focus. Note that those cities courses that are cross-listed with other departments or originate in them can be counted only once in the course selection, although they may be either allied or elective courses.

Students should also note that many courses in the program are given on an alternate-year basis. Many carry prerequisites in art history, economics, history, sociology and the natural sciences. Hence, careful planning and frequent consultations with the major advisers are particularly important. Special arrangements are made for double majors.

Given the interdisciplinary emphasis and flexibility of the program, it is rare that the programs of any two cities majors will be the same. Recurrent emphases, however, reflect the strengths of the major and incorporate the creative trajectories of student interests. These include:

Architecture and Architectural History.

Students interested in architectural and urban design should pursue the studio courses (226, 228) in addition to regular introductory courses. They should also select appropriate electives in architectural history and planning to provide a broad exposure to architecture over time as well as across cultural traditions. Affiliated courses in physics and calculus meet requirements of graduate programs in architecture; theses may also be planned to incorporate design projects. Those students focusing more on the history of architecture should consider related offerings in the Departments of History of Art and Classical and Near Eastern Archaeology, and should carefully discuss selections with regard to study abroad in the junior year. Those preparing for graduate work should also make sure that they develop the requisite language skills. These students should consult as early as possible with Carola Hein, Daniela Voith or Jeffrey Cohen, especially if they wish to pursue graduate study outside of the United States .

Planning and Policy.

Students interested in planning and policy may wish to consider the 3-2 Program in City and Regional Planning offered with the University of Pennsylvania. Their study plan should reflect a strong background in economics as well as relevant courses on social divisions, politics and policy-making, and ethics. As in other areas of interest, it is important that students also learn to balance their own experiences and commitments with a wider comparative framework of policy and planning options and implementation. This may include study abroad in the junior year as well as internships. Students working in policy and planning areas may consult with Juan Arbona or Gary McDonogh.

Additional trajectories have been created by students who coordinate their interests in cities with law, mass media, medicine, public health or the fine arts, including photography, drawing and other fields. The Cities Program recognizes that new issues and concerns are emerging in many areas of urban and suburban life. These must be met with solid foundations in the data of urban space and experience, cogent choices of methodology and clear analytical writing and visual analysis. Early and frequent consultation with major advisers and discussion with other students in the major are an important part of the Cities Program.

Minor Requirements

Requirements for the minor in the Cities Program are at least two out of the four required courses and four cities electives, of which two must be at the 300 level. Senior Seminar is not mandatory in fulfilling the cities minor.

Concentration in Environmental Studies

The Cities Program participates with other departments in offering a concentration in environmental studies. Students interested in environmental policy, action or design should take CITY 175 and GEOL/CITY 103 for credit in the major. Once they follow up with BIOL 220 (which may count as an allied course), they can develop their concentration with courses in architecture, policy and other fields in cities as well as choosing relevant electives in natural sciences, social sciences and humanities. Paperwork for the concentration generally should be filed at the same time as the major work plan. Students also should consider carefully their options with regard to study abroad in the junior year and thesis topics that bridge the major and concentration. Early consultation with
Ellen Stroud and the director of environmental studies is advised in the planning of courses.

Concentration in Latin American and Iberian Studies

The Cities Program has just inaugurated a cooperative arrangement with this Haverford-based concentration. This concentration entails competence in Spanish and completion of SPAN/GNPR 240 at Haverford as well as classes inside and outside the major chosen in consultation with Professor Roberto Castillo at Haverford and Cities advisers. The thesis topic should also reflect interest in Latin American and Iberian topics. This concentration also has links to a five-year cooperative M.A. program in Latin American Studies at Georgetown. Students interested in the concentration should contact Juan Arbona or Gary McDonogh as well as Roberto Castillo.

3-2 Program in City and Regional Planning

Over the past two decades, many planning students have entered the 3-2 Program in City and Regional Planning, offered in conjunction with the University of Pennsylvania . Students interested in this program should meet with the major advisers early in their sophomore year.

Volunteerism and Internships

The Cities Program promotes student volunteer activities and student internships in architectural firms, offices of urban affairs and regional planning commissions. Students wishing to take advantage of these opportunities should consult with the advisers and the Praxis Office before the beginning of the semester.

Study Abroad and Off Campus

Programs for study abroad or off campus are also encouraged, within the limits of the Bryn Mawr and Haverford rules and practices. In general, a one-semester program is preferred, but exceptions are made. The Cities Program regularly works with off-campus and study-abroad programs that are strong in architectural history, planning and design as well as those that allow students to pursue social and cultural interests. Students interested in spending all or part of their junior year away must consult with the major advisers and appropriate deans early in their sophomore year.

Haverford and Swarthmore courses may fulfill electives in the Cities Program. They may be identified in course listings and discussed with the major advisers. Courses at the University of Pennsylvania may sometimes be substituted for certain electives in the Cities Program; these should be examined in conjunction with the major advisers.

CITY B103 Earth System Science and the Environment

(Hoyle, Division IIL; cross-listed as GEOL B103)

CITY B121 Exploring Society by the Numbers

(Karen, Division I and Quantitative Skills; cross-listed as SOCL B121)

CITY B175 Environment and Society: History, Place and Problems

The ideas, themes and methodologies of the interdisciplinary field of environmental studies, beginning with definitions: what is nature? what is environment? and how do people and their settlements fit into each? Distinct disciplinary approaches are then addressed in which scholarship can and does (and does not) inform others. Assignments introduce methodologies of environmental studies, requiring reading landscapes, working with census data and government reports, critically interpreting scientific data, and analyzing work of experts. Counts toward environmental studies concentration. (Stroud, Division I; cross-listed as SOCL B175)

CITY B185 Urban Culture and Society

Techniques and questions of the social sciences as tools for studying historical and contemporary cities. Topics include political-economic organization, conflict and social differentiation (class, ethnicity and gender), and cultural production and representation. Both qualitative and quantitative methods are explored. Philadelphia features prominently in discussion, reading and exploration. (Arbona, Division I; cross-listed as ANTH B185)

CITY B190 The Form of the City: Urban Form from Antiquity to the Present

The city as a three-dimensional artifact. A variety of factors - geography, economic and population structure, politics, planning and aesthetics - are considered as determinants of urban form. (Hein, Division I or III; cross-listed as ANTH B190 and HART B190)

CITY B203 Ancient Greek Cities and Sanctuaries

(Wright, Division III; cross-listed as ARCH B203) Not offered in 2006-07.

CITY B205 Social Inequality

(Karen, Division I; cross-listed as SOCL B205) Not offered in 2006-07.

CITY B206 Statistical Methods in Economics

(Ross, Quantitative Skills; cross-listed as ECON B203)

CITY B207 Topics in Urban Studies: Philadelphia Architecture

This course involves systematic intermediate-level study of urban issues and topics aimed at polishing skills in data collection, analysis and writing. Such study may focus on particular cities, sets of institutions across cities or global issues such as development, immigration or mass media. (Cohen, Division I or III)

CITY B209 Medical Anthropology

(Pashigian, Division I; cross-listed as ANTH B210)

CITY B210 Natural Hazards

(Weil, Division II and Quantitative Skills; cross-listed as GEOL B209) Not offered in 2006-07.

CITY B212 Medieval Architecture

(Kinney, Division III; cross-listed as HART B212) Not offered in 2006-07.

CITY B213 Taming the Modern Corporation

(Ross, Division I; cross-listed as ECON B213)

CITY B214 Public Finance

(Newburger, Division I; cross-listed as ECON B214)

CITY B217 Research Methods and Theories

This class engages quantitative, qualitative and spatial techniques in the investigation and analysis of urban issues. While the emphasis is on designing research strategies in the context of public policy, students interested in other areas should also consider this course. This course is designed to help students prepare for their senior thesis. Form and topic will vary. Enrollment may be limited. (Arbona, Division I or III)

CITY B218 Globalization and the City

This course introduces students to contemporary issues related to the urban built environment in Africa, Asia and Latin America (collectively referred to as the Third World or developing countries) and the implications of recent political and economic changes. (Arbona, Division I) Not offered in 2006-07.

CITY B221 U.S. Economic History

(Redenius, Division I; cross-listed as ECON B221)

CITY B222 Introduction to Environmental Issues: Policy-Making in Comparative Perspective

(Hager, Division I; cross-listed as POLS B222)

CITY B226 Introduction to Architectural and Urban Design

An introduction to the principles of architectural and urban design. Prerequisites: some history of art or history of architecture and permission of instructor. (Olshin, Voith, Division III)

CITY B227 Topics in Modern Planning: Placemaking

An introduction to planning that focuses, depending on year and professor, on a general overview of the field or on specific cities or contexts. (Hein, Division III; cross-listed as HART B227)

CITY B228 Problems in Architectural Design

A continuation of CITY 226 at a more advanced level. Prerequisites: CITY 226 or other comparable design work and permission of instructor. (Olshin, Voith, Division III)

CITY B229 Comparative Urbanism

An examination of approaches to urban development that focuses on systematic comparison of individual cities through an original research paper that is written in multiple drafts. Themes and cities vary from year to year, although a variety of cultural areas are examined in each offering. In 2006, for example, the class examined growth beyond cities - suburbs, "grand ensembles," new towns, gated communities, shantytowns and sprawl, with case materials from Buenos Aires , Hong Kong, Los Angeles , Paris and Philadelphia . Other topics have included nature and the city, colonial and post-colonial cities, and race and immigration. (McDonogh, Division I; cross-listed as ANTH B229 and EAST B229 ) Not offered in 2006-07.

CITY B232 Latin American Urban Development

A theoretical and empirical analysis in a historical setting of the factors that have shaped the urban development of Latin America , with emphasis on the relationship between political and social change and economic growth. (Arbona, Division I; cross-listed as HART B232) Not offered in 2006-07.

CITY B234 Environmental Economics

(Ross, Division I; cross-listed as ECON B234)

CITY B237 Urbanization in Africa

(Ngalamulume, Division I; cross-listed as HIST B237)

CITY B238 The Economics of Globalization

(Ceglowski, Division I; cross-listed as ECON B236)

CITY B242 Urban Field Research Methods

(Takenaka, Division I; cross-listed as ANTH B242 and SOCL B242) Not offered in 2006-07.

CITY B244 Great Empires of the Ancient Near East

(Ataç, Division III; cross-listed as ARCH B244, HIST B244 and POLS B244) Not offered in 2006-07.

CITY B247 Topics: German Cultural Studies

(Kenosian, Division I or III; cross-listed as GERM B223 and HIST B247) Not offered in 2006-07.

CITY B248 Modern Middle East Cities

(Harrold, Division I; cross-listed as HEBR B248 and POLS B248) Not offered in 2006-07.

CITY B249 Asian American Communities

(Takenaka, Division I; cross-listed as ANTH B249 and SOCL B249) Not offered in 2006-07.

CITY B253 Survey of Western Architecture

The major traditions in Western architecture are illustrated through detailed analysis of selected examples from classical antiquity to the present. The evolution of architectural design and building technology, and the larger intellectual, aesthetic and social context in which this evolution occurred, are considered. (Hein, Cast Division III; cross-listed as ANTH B254, HART B253 and HIST B253) Not offered in 2006-07.

CITY B254 History of Modern Architecture

A survey of the development of modern architecture since the 18th century, with principal emphasis on the period since 1890. (Steffenson , Division III; cross-listed as HART B254)

CITY B255 Survey of American Architecture

An examination of forms, figures, contexts and imaginations in the construction of the American built environment from colonial times to the present. Materials in and from Philadelphia figure as major resources. (Cohen, Division III; cross-listed as HART B255)

CITY B258 L'Espace réinventé: la ville et ses enchantements

(Anderson; cross-listed as FREN B258)

CITY B266 Schools in American Cities

(Cohen, Division I; cross-listed as EDUC B266 and SOCL B266)

CITY B267 History of Philadelphia , 1682 to Present

(Shore, Division I; cross-listed as HIST B267) Not offered in 2006-07.

CITY B270 Japanese Architecture and Planning

The built environment in Japan does not resemble its American or European counterparts, leading visitors to characterize it as visually chaotic even as recent observers praise its lively traditional neighborhoods. This course will explore characteristics of Japanese cities, their history and presence, and will examine the particular cultural, political, economic and social contexts of urban form in Japan . (Hein, Division III; cross-listed as EAST B270 and HART B270)

CITY B272 Race and Place in Urban America

(Shedd, Division I; cross-listed as SOCL B272)

CITY B273 Topics on Early and Medieval China: Chinese Cities and City Culture

(Lin, Division I; cross-listed as EAST B272 and HART B272)

CITY B278 American Environmental History

Explores major themes of American environmental history, examining changes in the American landscape, development of ideas about nature, and the history of environmental activism. Explores definitions of nature, environment and environmental history while investigating interactions between Americans and their physical worlds. Counts toward environmental studies concentration. (Stroud, Division I or III; cross-listed as HIST B278)

CITY B302 Greek Architecture

(Webb, Division III; cross-listed as ARCH B302 and HART B301) Not offered in 2006-07.

CITY B303 Topics in American History: Immigration and Ethnicity.

(Shore, Division III; cross listed as HIST B303).

CITY B305 Ancient Athens : Monuments and Art

(Miller-Collett; cross-listed as ARCH B305) Not offered in 2006-07.

CITY B306 Advanced Fieldwork Techniques: Places in Time

A seminar and workshop for research into the history of place, with student projects presented in digital form on the Web. Architectural and urban history, research methods and resources for probing the history of place, the use of tools for creating Web pages and digitizing images, and the design for informational experiences are examined. (Cohen, Division I or III)

CITY B312 Topics in Medieval Art

(Easton , Division III; cross-listed as HART B311) Not offered in 2006-07.

CITY B314 Topics in Social Policy

(Newburger, Division I; cross-listed as ECON B314)

CITY B319 Advanced Topics in German Cultural Studies: Vienna 1900

(Meyer, Division III; cross-listed as COML B321, GERM B321 and HART B348)

CITY B321 Technology and Politics

(Hager; cross-listed as POLS B321) Not offered in 2006-07.

CITY B328 Geographic Information Systems

(Huber; cross-listed as ARCH B328, BIOL B328 and GEOL B328).

CITY B330 Comparative Economic Sociology: Societies of the North and South

(Osirim; cross-listed as SOCL B330) Not offered in 2006-07.

CITY B334 Seminar on the Economics of Poverty and Discrimination

(Newburger, Division I; cross-listed as ECON B324) Not offered in 2006-07.

CITY B335 Mass Media and the City

An examination of urban culture as a ground for conflict, domination and resistance through both theoretical and applied analysis of production, texts, readings and social action within a political/economic framework. Topics include imagery, ownership, boundaries, audience and reinterpretation as well as critical cultural policy. Materials are drawn from U.S. and global media, from comics to the Internet, with special emphasis on film and television. (McDonogh, Division I; cross-listed as ANTH B335) Not offered in 2006-7.

CITY B336 East Asian Development

(Rock, Division I; cross-listed as EAST B335 and ECON B335) Not offered in 2006-07.

CITY B345 Advanced Topics in Environment and Society

Advanced students will delve into complex issues of environmental justice and environmental racism. Read leading historical works in the field, engage literature focused on the practice and strategies of the environmental justice movement and explore more polemic works. Investigate ways in which environmentalism can and has led to environmental inequalities; study how resource allocation, property rights and access to social and economic power impact allocations of environmental amenities and risks; and learn to read and understand expressions of power in many landscapes and environments. Counts toward environmental studies concentration. (Stroud, Division I; cross-listed as SOCL B346)

CITY B348 Culture and Ethnic Conflict

(Ross; cross-listed as POLS B348) Not offered in 2006-07.

CITY B355 Topics in the History of London

(Cast, Division I or III; cross-listed as HART B355 and HIST B355)

CITY B360 Topics in Urban Culture and Society: Theories of the City

A systematic reading of major theories and theorists of the city, including Castells, Harvey, Lefebvre, Marx and others. Limited to 15 with preference for cities majors and related majors. (Arbona, Division I; cross-listed as ANTH B359)

CITY B365 Smart Growth: Policies and Techniques for Managing Urban Development and Redevelopment

An examination of the ways in which law and planning can serve to constrain sprawl in the contemporary United States and foster redevelopment. The seminar will examine both general issues and theories of development and case studies dealing with zoning, eminent domain and other intersections of law and development. Limited to 15 with preference for cities majors. (Keene, Division I)

CITY B368 Topics in Medieval History: Urbanism and Urban Violence in Late Antiquity and the Middle Ages

(Bjornlie, Division I or III; cross-listed as HIST B368)

CITY B378 The Architecture and Planning of American Collegiate Campuses

An exploration of the architecture, planning, and visual rhetoric of American collegiate campuses from their early history to the present. Historical consideration of design trends and projected imageries will be complemented by student exercises involving documentary research on design genesis and contexts, discussion of critical reception, evidence of contemporary performance and perception, and digital presentation. (Cohen, Division III)

CITY B398 Senior Seminar

An intensive research seminar. (Arbona, Hein, Stroud)

CITY B399 Senior Thesis

An intensive research seminar. Not offered in 2006-07.

CITY B403 Independent Study


CITY B450 Internships.


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