International Development Planning

We now live in a world where, more than ever, the local is affected by forces and characterized by dimensions—economic, political, environmental, social, and cultural—that are global. This presents planners with opportunities and challenges alike for making cities—in the global North as well as South—inclusive, equitable, and sustainable. By 2050 the population of our already urban world is expected to reach close to 10 billion. Three-quarters of this projected population increase will be urban, with over half of it in Asia, which will be home to the world’s largest megacities. Asia’s impressive industrialization and inexorable urbanization have yielded significant poverty reduction, but not without intensifying challenges of developmental equity and environmental sustainability. Hawai‘i’s strategic geographical location within the diverse and complex Asia-Pacific region, and the relevant expertise of DURP faculty members lend the IDP concentration its unique identity and forte. IDP students graduate with a global outlook on the purpose of planning and a nuanced understanding of its potential to impact urban societies of the global South. Among IDP’s several areas of strength are: urban poverty alleviation; urban environmental issues around water, sanitation, and other services; community development; shelter and slum upgrading; participation; decentralization and governance; collaboration among the state, private, and nongovernmental sectors; community resilience; climate change and disaster risk reduction; urban microfinance; and peri-urbanization and urban-rural linkages.

Recent capstone topics

  • Planning and urban informality: Examining inclusive possibilities
  • Analysis of policies and interventions for informal settlements in Dili, Timor Leste
  • Gender and urban mobility: Lessons from South Asia
  • Planning for adaptation to coastal flooding and sea level rise: Insights from Kolkata’s informal settlements
  • Land readjustment in Japan: A review of the practice through three case studies in the Greater Tokyo Area
  • Heritage management and tourism planning: The sacred site of Lumbini, Nepal

Courses in this stream

Courses may be listed in more than one stream.

  • PLAN 628 Urban Environmental Problems
  • PLAN 630 Urban and Regional Planning in Asia
  • PLAN 632 Hawai‘i and Pacific Island Planning
  • PLAN 633 Globalization and Urbanization in the Asia-Pacific Region
  • PLAN 634 Urban Shelter and Services in Developing Countries
  • PLAN 635 East Asian Development: Policy and Planning Issues
  • PLAN 636 Culture and Urban Form in Asia
  • PLAN 637 Environment and Development
  • PLAN 638 China’s Economic and Regional Development
  • PLAN 639 Community-based Natural Resources Development
  • PLAN 741 Civil Society, NGOs, and Urban Development (course to be proposed)

View full course descriptions and class availability.