Focused on Cities

Our mission is to increase the well-being of those who dwell in the world’s cities by promoting interdisciplinary research and teaching activities aimed at creating solutions to complex challenges facing urban areas.

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Focused On Cities

Increasing the well-being of those who make their homes in the world’s cities, and making cities more creative, productive, livable, and sustainable are known grand challenges of the 21st century. Urban research universities have a unique responsibility in addressing these challenges. In accordance with Goal 4 of GSU’s strategic plan, the Council for the Progress of Cities advances the urban mission of the University by strengthening and promoting interdisciplinary research and teaching activities aimed at developing effective solutions to complex challenges facing cities and their regions.


Areas Of Focus

The following three overarching and overlapping research themes are based on a faculty survey conducted in late Spring 2015. Details on research interests of our faculty in various Schools and Colleges are available on the individual Faculty pages.

Well-being of people who live, work and play in cities is influenced by intersecting social and policy arenas such as housing, health, employment, transit options, school quality, and safety. This theme captures several ongoing collaborative initiatives on health disparities, urban literacy, homelessness, accessibility to services and amenities, economic mobility, and neighborhood revitalization. Programs span research and outreach, policy formulation, and engagement with public, private and non-governmental entities.
Growing inequalities in income, unemployment and educational are nagging problems faced by cities. This theme captures a range of ongoing faculty research initiatives aimed at: people (improvement in the economic conditions and overall well-being of the most disadvantaged), place (affordable housing options with access to jobs, transit and amenities), partners (public-private partnerships, and the increasingly important roles played by community organizations, NGOs and faith-based organizations) and policies (including those related to immigrants, refugees and LGBTQ).
Cities and their inter-related “systems” are complex and integrative. The capacity of cities to absorb a wide range of shocks and disturbances and retain functionality has led to new and innovative frameworks, theories, measures, indicators as well as adaptation strategies to cope with changing baselines. This theme captures ongoing and formative research initiatives that span multiple scales (individuals, households, neighborhoods, cities), and domains (environment, infrastructure, economic vitality and equity).