Geography and Planning

Welcome to the Department of Geography and Planning at the University at Albany. Our students are educated to succeed in a broad range of careers in the Geography and Planning professions.

Undergraduate programs include a Bachelor of Arts in Geography and a Bachelor of Arts in Urban Studies & Planning as well as an Undergraduate Certificate in Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and Spatial Analysis. The department is also the home of the Bachelor of Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies with a faculty-initiated concentration in Globalization Studies.

Graduate programs include a Master of Arts in Geography and a Masters in Regional Planning as well as a Graduate Certificate in GIS and Spatial Analysis and a Graduate Certificate in Urban Policy. Our department also offers a combined Joint Master of Regional Planning and Doctor of Law (MRP/JD) in conjunction with Albany Law School.

Program Announcement

Dr. Catherine T. Lawson, Director of the Masters in Urban and Regional Planning (MRP) Program, is pleased to announce the recent modification in the MRP Program, bringing the old specialization of Housing, Local Economic Development and Community Planning, under the new, more comprehensive, designation of Community Planning. This expanded area of specialization will now include community resiliency, along with original three areas. Dr. Melissa A. Currie will be joining the MRP faculty in Fall 2016, as a tenure-track Assistant Professor, to lead the Community Planning specialization. She has extensive knowledge in professional planning, both in housing and community resiliency. The MRP Program has a policy of “rolling” admissions and still has openings for Fall 2016. For more information, contact Dr. Lawson by email or call (518) 442-4775.

We invite you to browse our website and please feel free to contact us with any questions.

  • Dream of Home Ownership Still Eludes Many Chinese

    While China is becoming a country of homeowners, many find it difficult to afford a home. Prof. Youqin Huang recently wrote an article for the Nikkei Asian Review to explain why this is the case. In particular, with rapid urbanization and influx of rural-to-urban migrants in China, Chinese cities are facing unprecedented challenges in providing decent and affordable housing to migrants. Migrants often have to live in informal and illegal housing, such as storage basements and bomb shelters, according to Prof. Youqin Huang on the CityLab, and Urban Studies.  The government has launched an aggressive low-income housing program, but migrants are often excluded and its success is yet to be seen, according to a policy memo Prof. Huang wrote for the Paulson Institute

  • Aphid-like sensors track trees' response to global warming

    Aphid-like sensors track trees' response to global warming

    More pulp. More paper. More lumber. Could increased timber production as a result of a longer growing season and other factors be a silver lining to the dreaded phenomenon of global warming?  According to Andrei Lapenas, associate professor of climatology at the University at Albany, that is the hope of many, yet the dream may be nothing more than wishful thinking. Read more here...  

  • Jason Zogg thirty under 30

    Masters in Regional Planning alumnus Jason Zogg "Thirty Under 30"

    MRP Alumnus Jason Zogg featured in UAlbany Magazine's "Thirty Under 30" for his work as an Urban Planner & Strategy Analyst.