Education amidst fragility, conflict and violence

By Steve Commins, Associate Director, Global Public Affairs @ UCLA Luskin Director, International Practice Pathway Faculty Cluster Leader, Global Environment and Resources, Lecturer in Urban Planning   Access to schooling and quality learning can be undermined by various manifestations of fragility, conflict and violence (FCV). The effect of different elements of FCV on education has both […]

Open and closed: Walking around Fortress Coyoacán

By Thomas Abbot, MURP ’18 The experience of walking in Mexico City can run the gamut from serene and calming to white-knuckle stressful. The parks seem made for the casual stroll, with no shortage of things to admire and an easy flow of people. By contrast, some streets present forbidding walls and hair-thin sidewalks, forcing […]

Violence prevention efforts in Kampala, Uganda

By Nikki Lewis, MPP, MSW ’19 My time at Kampala is one of contrast. I work for an organization dedicated to preventing violence against women and children in a culture that has deep patriarchal roots. I spend my days crafting material that will help organizations across Africa implement Violence Against Women (VAW) prevention programming. I […]

Reflections on ‘the perfect city’ and climate adaptation, from Bonn, Germany

By Lolly Lim, MURP ’18 It’s been about a month since I’ve arrived in Bonn, Germany, to participate in an internship with the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change’s (UNFCCC’s) Climate Adaptation Programme. My experience in Bonn so far has been one of run-ins-and-outs with the familiar and unfamiliar. Walking through this city of […]

The Urban Planning Challenges of Language in India

By Sonia Suresh My favorite phrase in Hindi is Main ghum gahee hoo. Aside from being to fun to say, it comes in handy because it means “I’m lost.” Of course, getting lost — whether because of culture or geography — is all in the adventure of being in a new country. However I came […]

Ciudad Posible: Exploring Urban Innovation in Latin America

By Ribeka Toda, MURP ’18 In the MURP program, one of the biggest frustrations can be the disconnection between academia and practice. Discussing brilliant ideas for improving our cities with the brightest people can be exhilarating until faced with the reality of influencing public policy. For example, Professor Donald Shoup has been teaching generations of […]

The Sun-Moon Divide: Gender Inequality in India

By Tanya Honey, MPP ’18 Navigating the streets of the world’s second-most-populated city and “rape capital” has been challenging as a woman. Whether it was staying home after it gets dark, taking the “Women’s Only” coach, or walking down the street alone without having men stare at you, the only conclusion I reached is that […]

New Connections, New Horizons: Spring Break in D.C.

By Susan Oh, MPP ’17 For the final spring break of my MPP program, I was incredibly lucky to travel to Washington D.C. with Professor Steve Commins and five other Luskin students to visit a number of NGOs, international aid and development organizations, and research institutions, including the World Bank, USAID, Aspen Institute and Mathematica, […]

Reflexive Use of Urban Space: from Los Angeles to Mexico City

By Alejandro Mercado, PhD Urban Planning ’04 I moved to Los Angeles more than twenty years ago and lived there for five years during my PhD studies at UCLA. The impact that my stay in Los Angeles had on my personal life and professional career is still present to this day. Certainly, Los Angeles and […]

Japan: Breaking Urban Expectations

By Paola Mendez, MURP ’17 Whenever I visit a new city, I try not to have many, if any, expectations of what I’ll find. I don’t want any expectations or preconceptions about the city to interfere with the way I actually experience it on the ground. In the case of Tokyo, notoriously the biggest city […]