Screen shot of map from Wisconsin PFAS Interactive Data Viewer.

New Book Highlights How GIS Improves Outcomes

Esri Press recently published a digital book called Mapping the Nation which demonstrates how a geographic approach guides important decisions and addresses challenges around the globe.

February 20, 2024 - ESRI

“Moral & Political Chart of the inhabited world:  Exhibiting the Prevailing Religion, form of government, degree of civilization, and Population of each country.” In Woodbridge’s School Atlas, 1831.

The Pseudoscientific Foundations of Racist Planning Practices

Racist and colonialist narratives in old geography textbooks help explain the prevalence of segregationist and discriminatory policies and other nasty planning practices. It’s time to understand and reconcile.

March 28, 2023 - Todd Litman

Salish Sea

A Surprising Lack of Geographic Knowledge

Have you ever heard of the Salish Sea? Neither have most of the people who live near it, in cities named Seattle and Vancouver.

November 16, 2019 -

Denver Region

Revisiting the Megaregion

The idea of cities as components of larger megaregions has lost some of its popularity, Alon Levy looks at regions around the world to try to understand how useful the concept is in understanding cities and regions.

September 5, 2019 - Pedestrian Observations

Little Rock 1871

Mapped: Every Building in the United States

Using data from Microsoft, the New York Times has published an online map showing the placement of every building in the country, in a simple black and white format.

October 12, 2018 - The New York Times

Hate Groups in the U.S. Are Both 'Concentrated and Considerably Spread Out'

A new study shows that these groups exist in around 10 percent of counties, and those counties are scattered across all 50 states.

March 19, 2018 - CityLab

Mercator map

Map-Correcting App Shows 'The True Size Of' Places

Typical world maps badly misrepresent the size of countries; a new web app shows their true scale.

June 20, 2016 - Wired

Last of the color coding

Four New Map Books Reviewed

Looking for the perfect holiday gift for a planner? Check out these new map books.

December 9, 2015 - New York Times

GAO Study Highlights Need for Geography Education Funding

K-12 geography proficiency has not improved since 1994.

October 21, 2015 - Association of American Geographers

Google maps screengrab of the United States

The Importance of Geographic Literacy

Maps are still an important tool in teaching kids to be global citizens.

July 30, 2015 - The Washington Post - Blogs

San Francisco Homeless

Study: Income Inequality Lowers Life Expectancy

Research suggests a correlation between regional income inequality and poorer health. Several statistical and sociological causes may come into play.

April 10, 2015 - New York Times

aerial view of downtown detroit showing lots of parking lots

Exploring the Unique Geography of Detroit

One of Detroit’s most defining modern characteristics—and most pressing dilemmas—is its huge amount of neglected and vacant land.

March 13, 2015 - Mapping Detroit

Exploring the Mental Terrain of Ancient Mapmaking

A new exhibition on Greco-Roman mapmaking at the Institute for the Study of the Ancient World in New York examines the relationship between geographic and metaphysical world views.

October 3, 2013 - The New York Times

Owning up to NYC's Subway Map Mistakes

Matt Flegenheimer reports on how newly found errors in New York's vaunted subway map have reignited a battle over who deserves credit for its design, and who should own up to its mistakes.

May 10, 2012 - The New York Times

America's Hidden, Distributed Infrastructural Dependencies

The WikiLeaks release revealed the locations of a set of infrastructural sites operated by the United States all across the world. This piece from Domus looks at the geographical and geopolitical implications of this network.

June 22, 2011 - domus

Mapping the Nation's Well-Being

Who's the happiest and healthiest of them all? The New York Times posts an interactive map of the national Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index.

March 16, 2011 - New York Times

Re-Examining the Geography of New Orleans Post-Spill

In the wake of the BP oil spill, geographer Richard Campanella of Tulane University takes a look at the geography of New Orleans and the Gulf region, and suggests that the disaster will fuel a renewed discussion of the area's uniqueness.

September 12, 2010 - Places

Food Stamps Across the Country

The New York Times' has created an interactive map of food stamp usage breaking down recipients by county across the United States.

December 3, 2009 -

Mapping: Not Just For Geographers Anymore

Citizen volunteers are democratizing the field of online mapping, spreading out to document neighborhoods and streets worldwide.

November 17, 2009 - New York Times

Geography Still Matters

  Some commentators think that Internet technology will liberate us from the constraints of place; for example, one book review of Joel Kotkin’s The New Geography states “Because today's connected workers can live anywhere they want, they will live anywhere they want.”  Kotkin himself is a little more circumspect, but writes: “Telecommunication allows people who want privacy, low-density neighborhoods and good schools to live in small towns in a way never before possible.”(1)  There is a tiny amount of truth to this claim: the Internet does make it

August 10, 2009 - Michael Lewyn

News from HUD User

HUD's Office of Policy Development and Research

Call for Speakers

Mpact Transit + Community

New Updates on PD&R Edge

HUD's Office of Policy Development and Research

Top Books

An annual review of books related to planning.

Top Websites

The best of the Internet—since 2002.

Top Apps

Planning apps for a brave new world.

Top Schools

The definitive ranking of graduate planning programs.

Urban Design for Planners 1: Software Tools

This six-course series explores essential urban design concepts using open source software and equips planners with the tools they need to participate fully in the urban design process.

Planning for Universal Design

Learn the tools for implementing Universal Design in planning regulations.