Tufts University

Graduate Programming in Urban and Environmental Policy and Planning

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Turn vision into practice

For fifty years, the Department of Urban and Environmental Policy and Planning (UEP) has been a place where students, faculty, and the community work to turn vision into practice. UEP centers its mission around the intersection of planning and policy, social justice and sustainability. A UEP education is:

  • Top-Ranked among planning programs, ranked #1 master’s only program by Planetizen and in the top 10 overall.
  • Hands-on learning environment inside and outside the classroom.
  • Engaged community strategy to address real-world issues.
  • Award-winning student work and internationally acclaimed faculty members.

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At UEP, Students learn critical skills to:

  • Critically analyze historical and systemic forces that perpetuate urban, social, and environmental problems and, in particular, their disproportionate impact on communities of color and other vulnerable and marginalized groups.
  • Assess public policy and planning interventions analyze societal and environmental trends, , and communicate findings so as to influence decision-makers and hold them accountable to their constituents.
  • Design, implement, and evaluate innovative and practical public policy and planning interventions to contend with these problems.
  • Recognize and realize opportunities for both incremental and transformational changes that take into account social, political, economic, institutional, organizational, and physical contexts.
  • Identify and leverage communities’ untapped assets to create innovative solutions that benefit the people who live there and grant them control over future development and distribution of resources.
  • Engage  residents and other key stakeholders as empowered partners in public policy and planning processes and the co-production of knowledge.

UEP Students learn through  a multi-disciplinary approach

  • By project-based learning in addition to lectures and seminars
  • With a passionate, curious, critical, and diverse cohort of current students as well as a faculty of scholars, alumni and practitioners who are dedicated to student learning.
  • By engaging with and contributing to accumulated knowledge of scholarship and practice through dialogue and research with faculty and other students.
  • Through learning and researching together with community partners.

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UEP programs

These Master's degree programs are designed to sharpen the skills of policy and planning professionals working toward inclusive, just, and sustainable communities.

  • Our core 2-year programs are the MA in Urban and Environmental Policy and Planning and the MS in Environmental Policy and Planning. These accredited urban planning programs programs are for students wanting to develop professional expertise in the urban and environmental policy and planning fields. They can be completed in two years of full-time study or in a part-time format. 
  • The Master of Public Policy (MPP) program is designed to help mid-career professionals with at least seven years of relevant professional experience take the next steps in their career and life, whether that is enhancing professional practice, pursuing a shift in career, or simply creating space for reflection and rejuvenation. The MPP program can be completed in one year of full-time study or two years of part-time study.
  • The 1-year MS in Sustainability is designed for students with interdisciplinary interests who are seeking to develop skills as sustainability practitioners and professionals. Some experience working on sustainability challenges is a benefit but is not required to be successful in the program.

UEP also offers a new, 100% online Certificate in Impact and Sustainable Investing for financial professionals who want to understand the role they can play to advance the field of impact investing and agency and NGO staffers who recognize the opportunity to build power and resilience through an enhanced understanding of impact capital.

  • During your time at UEP, you will benefit from access to a vibrant network of accomplished alumni, distinguished faculty, fellow students, and affiliated agencies. UEP also partners with other Tufts departments and schools, as well as other local colleges and universities, to offer students access to a diverse range of faculty and courses across the Boston area.