Master of Urban Planning

Transnational Planning Stream

Many academic planning programs in the U.S. structure their specializations and areas of concentration such that international planning issues are covered in a separate subfield labeled "international planning" or "international development planning" that is intended to serve a distinct professional career path.  In contrast, the Department of Urban and Regional Planning recognizes that even students preparing to practice solely within the United States benefit from exposure to international best practices in various planning subfields as well as an understanding of the implications of growing international linkages among cities and regions. Moreover, those students that are seeking careers specifically in international development planning and related fields are best served by developing expertise within one or more substantive planning concentrations (land use and transportation, community development, economic development, sustainable design and development, GIS) in addition to knowledge of the international planning field.

DURP's Transnational Planning Stream is therefore not designed as a separate concentration, but rather as a set of courses and learning opportunities supplementing the Department's other concentrations. This is a unique aspect of the curriculum at UIUC: transnational planning education is designed to work with, rather than in lieu of, other planning subfields.

The Transnational Planning Stream seeks to promote critical thinking and analytical skills by focusing on the history of international development planning, globalization as an influence on the growth and development of foreign and domestic cities and regions, the ethics and politics of contemporary development, and international planning theory and practice.  To achieve these, Transnational Planning Stream stresses  combining classroom learning with field-based experiences via participatory action research, study and research abroad, and internship with local and international organizations.

Recommended Courses




Highly recommended
UP 423

UP 429
Introduction to International Planning (Offered every Fall)

Professional Seminar in International Planning Practice
Suggested:  Other DURP courses of interest to students in TNP stream UP 555 Regional Development Theory
UP 428 International Planning Studio/ workshop (offered every summer in Costa Rica)
UP 499 International Environmental Issues
UP 521 Seminar in International/Transnational Development Planning (to be offered every other year)
Also, UP494 and UP594 Special Topics in Planning  (unique course offerings each semester -
past courses include Gender & Race in Community Development Planning, Gender & Dev in Russian & Former Republics, Community Economic Development, and Immigration, Diversity and Planning.

Other TNP-Related Courses in the University

Students may also consider electives from among the vast range of offerings on campus. For example, in addition to the course offerings through the area studies centers and programs listed here, the Department of Sociology has a strong transnational studies concentration and an active seminar series and workshop, and faculty in the departments of Agricultural and Consumer Economics, Geography, and Economics regularly offer courses of relevance to transnational planning.

Courses with specific language or regional focus Courses with international and global focus
Number Course Number Course Number Course
AAS 397 Asian Families in America ACE 387 Textiles in the Global Economy HIST 519 Colonialism & Postcolonialism
AFST 425 Southern Africa Race & Power ACE 411 Environment and Development HDFS 470 International Families
AFRO 460 Slavery in the United States ACE 451 Agriculture in International Development LAW 657 International Human Rights Law
ANTH 484 American Indian Studies ACE 455 Intl. Trade in Food & Agriculture LAW 798 Globalization
BALT 415 Baltic History and Culture ACE 551 International Food Policy I LIR 555 Labor in Less Developing Countries
EALC 392 Chinese Foreign Policy ACE 556 International Food Policy II PS 380 Internation Cooperation
EALC 421 Soc-Econ Historic Modern China AIS 485 Indigenous Transnationalisms PS 386 International Law
EALC 485 Family and Gender in China ANTH 402 Transnational Islam PS 389 International Communications
GER 401 Global Issues in German ANTH 504 Colonialism & Post Colonialism PS 395 International Organization
HIST 472 Immigrant America ANTH 505 Global Modernities PS 396 International Conflict
LLS 379 Latina/os and the City COMM 377 Global Communications PS 398 Strategic International Relations
LLS 412 Hispanics in the U.S COMM 389 International Communications PS 457 Governing Globalization
LLS 422 US Latina and Latino Families ECON 420 International Economics PS 543 Global Democratization
PS 418 Language & Minorities in Europe ECON 450 Development Economics PS 583 International Organizations
RSOC 443 Social Changes in Developing Areas ECON 520 International Trade Theory PS 584 International Cooperation
RUSS 460 Russian Culture Studies ECON 550 Economics of Development and Growth PS 587 Research Seminar in International Relations
RUSS 461 Russia and the Other ECON 521 Topics in International Economics PS 589 Topics in International Relations
SOC 321 Gender and Latina/o Migration ECON 551 Topics in Development Economics SOC 364 Impacts of Globalization
SOC 328 Asian Americans & Inequalities EPS 530 Education and Globalization SOC 367 Globalization Dynamics Debates
SOCW 412 Hispanics in the U.S GEOG 410 Geography of Development and Under Development SOC 463 Social Change in Developing Areas
SPAN 301 Culture of Spain GEOG 484 Migration and Spatial Interact SOC 465 Empire and War
UKR 113 Ukrainian Culture GEOG 520 Political Ecology SOC 466 New Modernities South
GEOG 453 Russia and Eurasia GEOG 557 Seminar in Regional Science SOC 560 Globalization Dynamics Debates
GEOG 455 Geography of Central &South Africa GLBL 356 Comparitive Political Economy SOC 561 Developing Theories
GWS 480 Gender Relations & International Development SOC 562 Seminar in Transnational Studies

Career Paths

Living in an increasingly globalized and interconnected world, exposure to transnational issues, gives an increased range of opportunity for students. DURP international planning activities and programs and its Transnational Planning Stream opens several such career paths for a graduating student. The students may combine their understanding of transnational processes with any of the concentration areas to develop the right skills for the career of their choice. Most concentrations also provide a list of career options for students who wish to combine their concentration with the TNP stream, and this information is available on the respective concentration webpage. This stream also provides opportunities for students who want to work domestically but are also interested in opportunities abroad.  In short, wishing to work abroad or within the US upon graduation, students who combine their area of concentration with the TNP stream, only widen their future career opportunities.

Additional Information

See the department’s International Activities and Programs webpage for information on the range of international programs and activities offered by the department and campus.