Fall Term

An entry-level course focused on development practices in project preparation and delivery. Open to all levels and fields, no prerequisites. Projects are used as the lens to understand Third World development theories. Teams will select and champion a project as reference throughout the term.

11.463J / 4.236J
Structuring Low-Income Housing Projects in Developing Countries

Examines dynamic relationship among key actors: beneficiaries, government, and funder. Emphasis on cost recovery, affordability, replicability, user selection, and project administration. Extensive case examples provide basis for comparisons.

View Course Description

January IAP

11.468J / 4.230J / 4.231
SIGUS Workshop

Interdisciplinary projects and interactive practices in urban settlement issues as investigated by MIT's SIGUS (Special Interest Group in Urban Settlements), with a focus on developing countries throughout the world. Participation by guest practitioners. Additional work required of students taking the graduate version.

View Course Description

Two-week field-based workshops in collaboration with local universities. Generally focused on communities in Third World countries, or targeting current pressing development issues. View previous workshops below:

Sustainable Settlement Design in Developing Countries

Currently Not offered

A 1-week intensive course structured around hands-on sessions which explore physical planning issues in the provision of housing for low-income communities. Stress on basic tools and techniques of sustainable planning.



Spring term

The New Practitioner
An introduction to tools and techniques for a service oriented paradigm of practice, in the context of rapid urbanization in Third World countries.

11.444J / 4.232J
The New Global Planning Practitioner

Considers a new interdisciplinary paradigm of practice that regards dialogue among practitioners and users essential for efficacious and creative design and planning process. Focuses on non-traditional client groups: communities, the poor, and the generally excluded middle-income. Explores key issues confronting development practitioners, with stress on practical exercises drawn from current national and international case studies; e.g., an investigative comparison of cities or tools in coping with impending rapid and massive growth and expansion. Engages those with a design and community service orientation. Additional work required of students taking the graduate version.

View Course Description

Exampes of previous years can be found below:

  • China-US Smart Slope Cities | 2011
  • Low-Income Housing Incremental Housing - UN World Urban Forum Rio | 2010
  • Rebuilding of Haiti | 2010
  • The New Practitioner 'Bayou Smart' Village | 2009
  • The Future Practitioner Extreme Makeover: Third World Urban | 2008
  • The New Practitioner | 2007