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Course Info

  • Course Number / Code:
  • 4.285 (Spring 2001) 
  • Course Title:
  • Power of Place: Media Technology, Youth, and City Design and Development 
  • Course Level:
  • Graduate 
  • Offered by :
  • Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)
    Massachusetts, United States  
  • Department:
  • Urban Studies and Planning 
  • Course Instructor(s):
  • Prof. Anne Whiston Spirn 
  • Course Introduction:

  • 11.948 / 4.285 Power of Place: Media Technology, Youth, and City Design and Development

    Spring 2001

    Course Highlights

    This class includes assignments and final projects based on MIT students working in association with a West Philadelphia middle school, on the urban redesign of neighborhoods near the middle school. 

    Course Description

    This workshop provides an introduction to urban environmental design and explores the potential of information technology and the Internet to transform public education, city design, and community development in inner-city neighborhoods. Integration of comprehensive ("top-down") and grassroots ("bottom-up") approaches to design and planning is a major theme.

    Students will work in a real neighborhood with real people on a real project, putting theory into practice and reflecting on insights gained in the process. We will study environmental and community history and devise designs for vacant land near a middle school in West Philadelphia within the context of planning for the larger community and watershed.

    The class website can be found here: Power of Place: Media Technology, Youth, and City Design and Development.


This course content is a redistribution of MIT Open Courses. Access to the course materials is free to all users.

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