College of Arts and Sciences

Cities, Development and Justice


  • Geopolitics and Marxist Geography
  • Humanitarian Aid
  • Labor Markets and Work
  • Market-based Environmental Management
  • Migration/Diaspora
  • Political Ecology of Development
  • Political Economy
  • Race & Ethnicity
  • Refugees and IDPs
  • Sustainable Development
  • Urban Geography


The Cities, Development and Justice (CDJ) concentration brings together the urgent challenges of our time by examining the relations between society and space. We examine the intersections of environmental aspects of economic growth, historical change, as well as contemporary political processes. These topics encompass the diverse terrain of geography that includes global urbanization, uneven geographical development, environmental justice, social movements, geography of race, politics of social-environmental knowledge, infrastructure policy and politics, and geopolitics of international development.

The CDJ concentration prepares students for careers in urban and environmental policy in government, law, the private sector, the non-profit sector, education and/or academia. CDJ students will be able to demonstrate familiarity with pressing issues facing the global development community, articulate and defend opinions about social and environmental justice issues, and have competency in a range of qualitative and quantitative research methodologies. CDJ students will also be up-to-date in their knowledge of the major theoretical debates in the social sciences.

The research goals of the CDJ concentration are threefold. First, to develop research agendas geared towards the generation and systematic collection of empirical data. Second, to contribute to theoretical and methodological debates in the field of urban geography and development studies in and beyond the discipline of geography. And third, to produce research with the potential to positively affect social and environmental justice outcomes.