The Joint Program in City Design and Development (CDD) is an academic and research program concerned with shaping and designing the built and natural environment of cities and suburban territories.
CDD is a collaboration of the MIT Departments of Urban Studies and Planningand Architecture, as well as the Center for Real Estate, the Center for Advanced Urbanism, and the Media Lab. As such, it joins key actors and disciplines that are shaping cities. Together, we seek to better understand the changing urban environment and to invent new architectural forms, public policies, development products, and technologies that will improve the quality of urban life.
The program is led by scholars and practitioners who are committed to interdisciplinary research as well as action in the field, developing new modes of professional intervention. Our extensive course offerings and projects allow advanced students to develop specialized skills, while enabling those new to the field to achieve professional competence in city design.
The program addresses both cities and urban regions. It examines ways that they have been designed, planned, and developed in the past, while proposing new visions for the future. It is also international in scope, with studios and research projects in the US and worldwide. In all of these venues the faculty brings a commitment to reflective practice, to involving those who will be affected by city design decisions, to sustaining the natural setting and local culture, and to promoting a long range perspective on the consequences of actions that shape the urban fabric.
Students in CDD come from many countries with diverse backgrounds and experiences. Some have prior professional degrees in architecture, landscape architecture, and planning; others come from varied academic fields in the sciences and arts. Faculty advisors help students to tailor the program’s extensive subject offerings and research opportunities into individualized areas of study, supported by the unparalleled information and technology resources of MIT.