Learning Pathways - Land Use & Planning


This pathway concentrates your attention on understanding the many influences that decisions about the use of land have on social, environmental, and economic sustainability.  It focuses on the intersections between the built and natural environments and the social and political systems that shape decisions by individuals, organizations and society about land use. Students who pursue this pathway will be well suited for careers in urban planning, environmental policy, environmental management, environmental advocacy, and environmental research.


Stacey Swearingen White, Urban Planning - Co-lead Faculty Member, Land Use & Planning
Sara Gregg, History - Co-lead Faculty Member, Land Use & Planning
Bonnie Johnson, Urban Planning
Ward Lyles, Urban Planning Chris Brown, Environmental Studies and Geography & Atmospheric Science
Dorothy Daley, Political Science and Environmental Studies


Suggested Courses

Typically Offered Every Year

EVRN 405 Kansas Power
Where does our energy come from? How can we optimize our use of renewable and nonrenewable sources of energy? What are the drivers moving us to more renewable sources of energy? What are the impediments? In this course we will explore the use of fossil fuels, nuclear, wind, geothermal and solar energy in Kansas. We will visit nearby power plants, and alternative energy companies. Students will be expected to design an energy plan for a local entity, and present their ideas. Prerequisite: EVRN 140 and EVRN 142. LEC.

The class is not offered for the Spring 2020 semester.

EVRN 410 Environmental Applications of Geographic Information Systems
An introduction to the use, display, and analysis of spatial data. Students will acquire a foundational skill-set in geographic information systems and remote sensing using industry-standard GIS software and will apply these skills using environmental data and case studies. Prerequisite: EVRN 148 or EVRN 149 or GEOG 148 or GEOG 149; EVRN 103 or HIST 103, EVRN 150 or GEOG 150 or EVRN 347 or HIST 347. LEC.
Spring 2020
Type Time/Place and Instructor Credit Hours Class #
LEC Nuckolls, Kathleen
3 55840
EVRN 510 Advanced Environmental Applications in Geospatial Techniques
This course focuses on applying advanced geospatial mapping and analysis techniques to "real-world" environmental issues. Course content may include lecture/lab time on advanced geospatial topics; a major class project, small-group projects, or individual projects; or half-semester internships with state agencies or campus entities that will culminate in an individual project. The specific nature of projects will be driven largely by student interest and ability, as well as agency/center needs. Prerequisite: EVRN 410 or equivalent course; or permission of the instructor. LEC.
Spring 2020
Type Time/Place and Instructor Credit Hours Class #
LEC Wichman, Katy
3 58134
EVRN 550 Environmental Economics
This course provides an overview of the theory and empirical practice of economic analysis as it applies to environmental issues. Topics include externalities (a type of market failure), the valuation of nonmarket goods, the practice of benefit-cost analysis, and the efficiency and cost effectiveness of pollution control policies. Most importantly, the course permits students to perform economic field research, using state-of-the-art techniques in a manner accessible to undergraduate students. (Same as ECON 550.) Prerequisite: ECON 104, ECON 140, or ECON 142. LEC.
Spring 2020
Type Time/Place and Instructor Credit Hours Class #
LEC Okao, Alfred
W 04:10-06:40 PM REGN 163 - EDWARDS
3 49190
UBPL 200 Sustainability and Society
This course will introduce the concept of sustainability, examining its early iterations, recent applications, and possible future transformations. Critical analysis of sustainability as a concept and societal goal will be a course cornerstone. We will examine two contemporary social issues that are relevant to students at the University of Kansas. Social science perspectives will be emphasized, but, because sustainability necessitates an interdisciplinary perspective, the course will consider the contributions of a wide range of disciplines to these issues. LEC.

The class is not offered for the Spring 2020 semester.

UBPL 300 Planning the Sustainable City
A broad introduction to the field of urban planning as a technical profession, a process of decision-making, and a governmental function. The multi-disciplinary nature of planning as an area for professional practice in the geographical, socio-economic and political contexts of the U.S. is stressed. We will explore the promise and limitations of planning in the context of mitigating and adapting to climate change. The course is intended for both the student who is considering planning as a major field of study and the student with primary interest in a related field who would like a working knowledge of past and current planning in the U.S. LEC.
Spring 2020
Type Time/Place and Instructor Credit Hours Class #
LEC Lyles, Ward
TuTh 01:00-02:15 PM RIT 164 - LAWRENCE
3 48788
UBPL 522 History of the American City I
This course examines the evolution of American cities from their European antecedents through the late 20th Century, from the urban planning perspective. It focuses on the changing spatial forms and functions of American cities and how these changes relate to socioeconomic and political aspects of urbanization as well as changes in technology. Emphasis is placed on analyzing the relationships between historical development patterns and the current range of problems facing most U. S. cities. (Same as UBPL 722 but gives undergraduate credit.) LEC.

The class is not offered for the Spring 2020 semester.

UBPL 538 Environmental Planning Techniques
The course covers a variety of topics within environmental planning. Each topic is examined with respect to the scope of the issues, the methods of analyzing and/or measuring those issues, and the ways planners can address those issues in order to avoid or mitigate environmental problems. LEC.
Spring 2020
Type Time/Place and Instructor Credit Hours Class #
LEC Lawless, Julie
M 06:00-08:40 PM SNOW 201 - LAWRENCE
3 43345
UBPL 565 Introduction to Sustainable Land Use Planning
This course introduces students to the issues that planners and decision makers face as they strive to protect environmental resources, especially within the context of land use planning. Emphasis will be placed on the theoretical and policy considerations that guide the work of environmental planners. LEC.

The class is not offered for the Spring 2020 semester.

Typically Offered Every Two Years

EVRN 347 Environmental History of North America
A survey of changes in the landscape and in people's perceptions of the natural world from 1500 to present. Topics include agroecology, water and energy, the impact of capitalism, industrialism, urbanization, and such technologies as the automobile and the origins of conservation. (Same as HIST 347.) LEC.
Spring 2020
Type Time/Place and Instructor Credit Hours Class #
LEC Boynton, Alex
Th 03:00-05:50 PM BEST 125 - EDWARDS
3 58111
Typically Offered Less Than Every Two Years

EVRN 528 Environmental Justice and Public Policy
This course provides an overview of environmental justice, both as a social movement and as a public policy initiative. Environmental justice examines the distribution of environmental externalities across different socio-economic and racial groups. We will discuss several different public policy areas that have been impacted by the environmental justice movement: hazardous waste facility siting, urban redevelopment and Brownfields, transportation policy, and Native American sovereignty. We will also touch upon international environmental policy in an environmental justice context. Throughout the course we will evaluate empirical issues in studying environmental justice. (Same as POLS 528.) Prerequisite: POLS 306, or a statistics class, or consent of instructor. LEC.

The class is not offered for the Spring 2020 semester.


PLEASE NOTE: If you are interested in enrolling in one of the courses listed above, remember to check the Schedule of Classes or contact the offering department (e.g., Geography & Atmospheric Science) to verify that the course will be offered during the semester in which you plan to enroll in the course.

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