thesis in environmental planning

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50 Best Thesis Topics for Environmental Planning

  • February 10, 2023
  • Environmental planning , Landscape architecture , Urban design thesis , urban research

Environmental Planning

Environmental planning is a process that considers the impact of human activities on the environment and seeks to minimize harm and promote sustainability. The goal of environmental planning is to balance economic, social, and environmental factors to ensure that current and future generations can enjoy a healthy and thriving environment.

This type of planning involves identifying potential environmental impacts of various activities, such as land development, infrastructure construction, resource extraction, and transportation projects. It also involves developing strategies to mitigate these impacts and enhance environmental quality. This can involve everything from preserving and restoring natural habitats, to reducing greenhouse gas emissions, to promoting sustainable land use practices.

Masters of Environmental Planning:

A Master’s in Environmental Planning (MEP) is a graduate degree program that focuses on the study of environmental policy and planning practices. The program aims to equip students with the knowledge and skills required to understand, analyze and address the complex environmental issues facing society.

Students in the MEP program have the opportunity to learn about the latest theories, practices, and tools for addressing environmental problems and developing sustainable solutions. They learn to analyze data, develop policy recommendations, and communicate their ideas effectively to various stakeholders.

The MEP program also provides students with hands-on experience in environmental planning through internships, capstone projects, and other experiential learning opportunities. Graduates of the program are equipped to work in a variety of roles in the public, private, and non-profit sectors, including environmental planning, policy analysis, and management.

The MEP degree is well-suited for individuals who are passionate about the environment and are interested in making a positive impact on the world. Graduates of the program can be found working in a variety of settings, including government agencies, non-profit organizations, private consulting firms, and universities.

Masters of Environmental PlanningThesis:

A thesis is an important component of a Master’s in Environmental Planning (MEP) program, as it allows students to demonstrate their mastery of the subject matter and apply their knowledge and skills to a real-world problem. The thesis typically involves original research and is a chance for students to contribute new knowledge to the field of environmental planning.

UDL Thesis Publication 2024

Curating the best thesis Globally !

Environmental Planning Thesis Topics List:

  • Green Infrastructure Planning for Resilient Cities
  • The Role of Environmental Planning in Climate Adaptation
  • Sustainable Land Use Planning: An Evaluation of Best Practices
  • The Importance of Biodiversity in Environmental Planning
  • Climate Change and Environmental Planning: Mitigation and Adaptation Strategies
  • The Impacts of Urbanization on Natural Ecosystems and the role of Environmental Planning
  • The Integration of Renewable Energy in Environmental Planning
  • Environmental Planning for Coastal Zones and Sea Level Rise
  • The role of Environmental Planning in Disaster Risk Reduction
  • Climate-Smart Agriculture and Environmental Planning

50 Best Thesis Topics for Environmental Planning 1

  • Urban Food Systems and Environmental Planning
  • The Importance of Environmental Justice in Environmental Planning
  • Environmental Planning for Water Management and Scarcity
  • The Role of Environmental Planning in Air Quality Management
  • Environmental Planning for Eco-Tourism and Protected Areas
  • Environmental Planning for Renewable Energy Generation
  • Environmental Planning for Mitigating the Impacts of Natural Disasters
  • The Importance of Public Participation in Environmental Planning
  • Environmental Planning for Sustainable Transportation
  • The Role of Environmental Planning in Forest Management

50 Best Thesis Topics for Environmental Planning 3

  • Environmental Planning for Sustainable Energy Use
  • The Role of Environmental Planning in Sustainable Land Management
  • Environmental Planning for Climate Resilient Infrastructure
  • The role of Environmental Planning in Sustainable Tourism
  • Environmental Planning for Sustainable Agriculture and Land Use
  • The Importance of Environmental Planning in Soil and Water Conservation
  • Environmental Planning for Sustainable Development Goals
  • The role of Environmental Planning in Sustainable Land Use Planning
  • Environmental Planning for Sustainable Coastal Zone Management
  • The Role of Environmental Planning in Water Resource Management
  • Environmental Planning for Sustainable Forest Landscapes
  • The Importance of Environmental Planning in Biodiversity Conservation
  • Environmental Planning for Sustainable Energy Systems
  • The Role of Environmental Planning in Environmental Risk Assessment and Management.

50 Best Thesis Topics for Environmental Planning 5

  • Environmental Planning for Sustainable Urban Development
  • The role of Environmental Planning in Hazardous Waste Management
  • Environmental Planning for Sustainable Agriculture
  • Environmental Planning for the Protection of Endangered Species
  • The Integration of Renewable Energy into Environmental Planning
  • Environmental Planning for Sustainable Energy Management
  • The Role of Environmental Planning in Ecosystem Services Management
  • Environmental Planning for Sustainable Development in Developing Countries
  • The Role of Environmental Planning in Climate Change Mitigation
  • Environmental Planning for Sustainable Resource Management
  • The Role of Environmental Planning in Managing Biodiversity Loss
  • Environmental Planning for Water Conservation and Management
  • The role of Environmental Planning in Carbon Sequestration
  • Environmental Planning for Sustainable Forest Management
  • The Importance of Environmental Planning in Wildlife Conservation
  • Environmental Planning for Sustainable Transport System

50 Best Thesis Topics for Environmental Planning 7

UDL Thesis Publication 2023

50 Best Thesis Topics for Environmental Planning 9

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Digital Commons @ USF > College of Arts and Sciences > School of Geosciences > Geography, Environment and Planning > Theses and Dissertations

Geography, Environment and Planning Theses and Dissertations

Theses/dissertations from 2023 2023.

Travel and Migration Behaviors of Migrants from Puerto Rico During Disasters , Lauren C. Carter

Spatial Pattern and Environmental and Social Factors of Monkeypox in the Contiguous United States , Linbo Han

Predicting Groundwater Spring Locations from Topographic and Climatic Data Using Maxent Modeling , Ayten Ece Koc

Prepare for, Respond to, Recover, and Learn from Disasters: Using Data-Driven Methods to Model and Understand Disaster Resilience , Jinwen Xu

Quantifying the Effectiveness of Night Vision Detection: A Comparative Study of Visible Light, Night Vision, and Thermal Images , Feng Yeh

Spatial Mismatch between Electric Vehicles (EVs) and EV charging stations in Florida , Chuang Yin

Theses/Dissertations from 2022 2022

Measuring Sustainable Development through Tax Increment Financed Brownfield Redevelopment Statutes: A Florida Case Study , Jeff Burton

Climate Action and Indigenous Land Relations: A Case Study in Nagaland, Northeastern India , Osensang Pongen

“Fast Policy” and “Rule By Aesthetics”: A Preliminary Study of Water Street Tampa –The “Worlding” of an Aspiring “Icon Project” , Nousheen Rahman

Assessing Changes in Actual Air Quality and Public Perceptions of Air Quality in Kathmandu Valley Nepal pre and post COVID-19 Lockdown , Robin Margherita Rives

Isotopic Study of the Waters from the Sulphur Springs Catchment, Tampa, Florida , Esra Zengin

Inland Tropical Cyclone Intensity Decay in the Continental United States , Yijie Zhu

Theses/Dissertations from 2021 2021

Soil Accretion and Mass Accumulation in a Scrub and Fringe Mangrove Forest in Biscayne Bay, Florida , Jessica A. Jacobs

Machine Learning for Species Habitat Analysis , Abigail Lavallin

Remote Sensing and GIS Integration for Amazon Rainforest Wildfires Applications , Cong Ma

The Little Things That Count: Mapping Diversity of West Florida’s Shelf , Nicole L. Seiden

Evacuation Decision Making and the Role of Social Connections across Evacuation Statuses during Hurricane Irma , Nathan D. Shull

Examining the Effects of Hydrology and Reclaimed Water Application on Nutrient Retention in Wetlaculture Mesocosms in Southwest Florida , Andrew Wilson

Theses/Dissertations from 2020 2020

The Use of Spanish Moss as a Biological Indicator to Examine Relationships Between Metal Air Pollution, Vegetation Cover, and Environmental Equity in Tampa, Florida , Yousif Abdullah

Rainfall, Precipitation, and Drought Patterns Associated with Wintertime Transmission of Eastern Equine Encephalitis Virus (EEEV) in Florida , Bestami Cevher

Soil Characteristics Associated with Horse Cases of Eastern Equine Encephalitis Virus in Florida , Fulya Guzelkucuk

Exploring the Potential of Nutrient Retention and Recycling with Wetlaculture Systems in Ohio with Physical and Landscape Models , Bingbing Jiang

Optimal Strategies for Grassland Restoration to Increase Spatial Carrying Capacity of Florida Sandhill Cranes in Pasco County, Florida , Ibrahim Kaya

A Sustainability Machine: The Incineration-based Waste Regime in Tampa, FL, USA , Kevin P. Martyn

Climate Change and Sustainable Development within the Tourism Sector of Small Island Developing States: A Case Study for the Bahamas , Arsum Pathak

The Perceived Usefulness of a Weather Radar Display by Tampa Bay Residents , Michelle E. Saunders

The Short-Term Effects of Different Removal Methods of Urochloa Maxima, Guinea Grass, on Acoustic Complexity , Connor D. Wagner

Assessment of Land Cover Change in St. Martin’s Marsh Aquatic Preserve, Florida, USA , Katie Wagner

Current and Projected Sustainability of the Water-Energy-Food Nexus in Caribbean Small Island Developing States , Zachary S. Winters

Theses/Dissertations from 2019 2019

Perceptions of the Effectiveness of Food Policy Coalitions in Strengthening Community Food Security in the United States. , Joseph G. England III

Measuring and Understanding Food Accessibility in the Tampa Bay Area , Bailey I. Glover

Assessing palm decline in Florida by using advanced remote sensing with machine learning technologies and algorithms. , Christopher B. Hanni

Measurement of Changes in Forest Fragmentation Caused by Road Construction Between 2000 and 2014 Using GIS in St. Johns County, Florida , Ahmet Karatas

Desertification Risk Analysis Based on Soils and Climate in Olive Cultivated Areas in Tulare County, California , Zehra Kavakli Karatas

Storm Surge and Evacuations in Pinellas County , Christianne Pearce

Water Scarcity in the Face of Hurricanes: Improving the Resilience of Potable Water Supplies in Selected Florida Counties , Fautemeh Sajadi Bami

A Method to Analyze Similarities of Eye Movements: a GIScience Based Spatiotemporal Approach , Mehrdad Vaziri

Theses/Dissertations from 2018 2018

Assessing the Impacts of Ghana’s Oil and Gas Industry on Ecosystem Services and Smallholder Livelihoods , Michael Acheampong

Policing the Riverfront: Urban Revanchism as Sustainability , Jared J. Austin

Remote Sensing and Spatial Metrics for Quantifying Seagrass Landscape Changes: A Study on the 2011 Indian River Lagoon Florida Seagrass Die-off Event , René Dieter Baumstark

Reconstructing Historical Hurricane Tracks in the Atlantic Basin: Three Case Studies from the 1840s , Emily L. Cerrito

Access to Safe Water Supply: Management of Catchment for the Protection of Source Water in Ghana , Michael K. Eduful

A Comparative Study on Coastal Zone Changes and Anthropogenic Impacts between Tampa Bay, USA, and Xiangshan Harbor, China, during the Last 30 Years , Qiandong Guo

A Behavioral Analysis of Households Using Reclaimed Water in Irrigation: Case of Pinellas County, Florida , Natalie Kuraya-Ziyadeh

Understanding Agricultural-Land Conservation from the Perspective of Landowners in Franklin County, Massachusetts , Rocio Lalanda

An Investigation of Habitat Suitability Factors and their Interactions for Predicting Gopher Tortoise Habitat , Abigail V. Lavallin

Operationalizing the Pressure and Release Theoretical Framework Using Risk Ratio Analysis to Measure Vulnerability and Predict Risk from Natural Hazards in the Tampa, FL Metropolitan Area , Jessica A. Wilder

Assessing the Cooling Effects of Urban Vegetation on Urban Heat Mitigation in Selected U.S. Cities , Qiuyan Yu

Theses/Dissertations from 2017 2017

Forging Blockchains: Spatial Production and Political Economy of Decentralized Cryptocurrency Code/Spaces , Joe Blankenship

What Makes Water Policy Sustainable? An Analysis of Water Policy in US Cities , Rebecca Brady David

Longitudinal Awareness: A Study of Vulnerability to Flooding in Polk County, Iowa , Kerri A. Dickey

Using Remote Sensing to Evaluate Wetland Recovery in the Northern Tampa Bay Area Following Reduction in Groundwater Withdrawals , Amor Elder

Stormwater Infiltration and Groundwater Integrity: An Analysis of BMP Siting Tools and Groundwater Vulnerability , Kristopher Craig Gallagher

Pollen Forecasting in Sarasota, Florida , Daniel J. Gessman

Potential Impacts of Accelerated Sea-Level Rise and Hurricane-Induced Storm Surge in Western Pasco County, Florida , Kittiya Harris

The Ability of an Aquatic Invader to Uptake Nutrients in an Upstream Estuarine Environment: Implications for Reducing the Intensity and Frequency of Massive Fish Kills in Florida , Melissa L. Kerr

An Assessment of Constructed Wetland Treatment System Cells: Removal of Excess Nutrients and Pollutants from Municipal Wastewater in Lakeland, Florida , Molly Klinepeter

Identifying Nodes of Transmission in Disease Diffusion Through Social Media , David Sebastian Lamb

The Role of High-Elevation Headwater Runoff in Streamflow Generation and Water Supply in the Northern Andes, Colombia , Laura Lotero Lozano

A Landscape of Thermal Inequity: Social Vulnerability to Urban Heat in U.S. Cities , Bruce Coffyn Mitchell

Effects of Anthropogenic Activity on the Green Swamp Preserve Ecosystem , Barbara Ann Nordheim-Shelt

Abundance and Habitat Preferences of Introduced Muscovy Ducks (Cairina moschata) , Jacqueline Marie Perry Cahanin

Multi-scale Approaches for Evaluating the Success of Habitat Restoration in Tampa Bay, Florida , Stephanie Thompson Powers

How Lessons from a Past Disaster Can Influence Resilience and Climate Adaptation in Broward County, Florida , Hannah Rose Torres

Reappropriating Public Space in Nanchang, China: A Study of Informal Street Vendors , Bryan C. Winter

Perceptions Affecting Tree Valuation: An Analysis of Recently Sold and Leased Properties in Tampa, Florida , Cody R. Winter

Theses/Dissertations from 2016 2016

Locally Optimized Mapping of Slum Conditions in a Sub-Saharan Context: A Case Study of Bamenda, Cameroon , Julius Anchang

Analysis of Managerial Decision-Making within Florida’s Total Maximum Daily Load Program , Justin Barthle

Environmental and Community Health in South San Diego County: A Behavior Analysis of Recreational Ocean Users Along Imperial Beach, California , Trista Brophy

Population Dynamics and Vulnerability Reduction: The Role of Non-Profit Organizations Following the 2011 Earthquake in Christchurch, New Zealand , Nicole Suzanne Hutton

Media Representations of Abortion Politics in Florida: Feminist Geographic Analysis of Newspaper Articles, 2011-2013 , Jennifer Iceton

Situating Migrants in Contemporary Japan: From Public Spaces to Personal Experiences , Milena Urszula Janiec Grygo

How Mature Capitalism Turns Pollution into Diamonds: Malagnogenesis and the Reverse-Engineering of Harm into Risk , Kevin P. Martyn

Constituting Agricultural and Food Policy in Malawi: The Role of the State and International Donors in the Farm Input Subsidy Program (FISP) , Peter Rock Nkhoma

Development of a Forecast Process for Meteotsunami Events in the Gulf of Mexico , Leilani D. Paxton

The Effect of Home Range Estimation Techniques on Habitat Use Analysis , Brendon Quinton

A Review of Reclaimed Water for Irrigation Use in an Urban Watershed , Anamarie Elizabeth Rivera

Theses/Dissertations from 2015 2015

The Role of Community Participation in Water Production and Management: Lessons From Sustainable Aid in Africa International Sponsored Water Schemes in Kisumu, Kenya , Erick Oniango Ananga

An Investigation of the Effects of Chemical and Physical Weathering on Submerged Karst Surfaces , Bryan Charles Booth

Saharan Air Layer Dust Loading: Effects on Convective Strength in Tropical Cloud Clusters , Randall J. Hergert

Tornado Fatalities: An In-Depth Look at Physical and Societal Influences , Heather Joann Key

A Composite Spatial Model Incorporating Groundwater Vulnerability and Environmental Disturbance to Guide Land Management , Johanna L. Kovarik

Quantifying the Interaction of Wildlife and Roads: a Habitat and Movement Approach , Rebecca Whitehead Loraamm

Land-use & Water Quality in the Headwaters of the Alafia River Watershed , Jaime Alison Swindasz

The Impact of Bus Rapid Transit Implementation on Residential Property Values: A Case Study in Reno, NV , Steven Thomas Ulloa

Theses/Dissertations from 2014 2014

Determining What Factors Affect Peoples' Perceptions of the Use of Reclaimed Water as a Source for Potable Water: A Study within Hillsborough County, Florida , Susana Rebecca Alvarado Tricoche

The Influence of the Projected Coordinate System on Animal Home Range Estimation Area , Michael Barr

Managing Regional Water Resources Amidst Rapid Urbanization in Southwest Florida: A Case Study , Nicole Owusua Caesar

An Evaluation of Florida Gulf Coast University's Residence Life Staff Member's Hurricane Preparedness , Erin Floto

Greenhouse gas emissions and climate policy in Florida's state and local governments (2000 to 2010) , Sandra Jo Garren

Risk Perception and Beliefs about Volcanic Hazards: A Comparative Study of Puna District Residents , Melanie Marie Leathers

An Investigation of Methodologies for Determining Walkability and its Association with Socio-Demographics: An Application to the Tampa - St. Petersburg Urbanized Area , Oana A. McKinney

Connecting Institutional Discourses and Everyday Understandings of Climate Change: Viewpoints from a Suburban Neighborhood in Tampa, Florida , Christopher Metzger

Assessing the Environmental Justice Implications of Flood Hazards in Miami, Florida , Marilyn Christina Montgomery

Testing the Feasibility of Bioacoustic Localization in Urban Environments , Blaire O'neal

Agriculture, Environmental Restoration and Ecosystem Services: Assessing the Costs of Water Storage on Agricultural Lands in South Florida , Kayla Ouellette

Atmospheric and Ocean Conditions and Social Aspects Associated with Rip Current Drownings in the United States , Charles Hugh Paxton

Still Waters Run Deep: Landscaping Practices, Community Perceptions, and Social Indicators for Stormwater Nonpoint Source Pollution Management in Manatee County, Florida , Ann Rebecca Persaud

An Analysis of Public Perception and Response to Hurricane Sandy , Lindsay L. Rice

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Home > CNS > ECO > Environmental Conservation Masters Theses Collection

Environmental Conservation

Environmental Conservation Masters Theses Collection

Theses from 2024 2024.

Effects of Habitat, Density, and Climate on Moose and Winter Tick Ecology in the northeastern U.S. , Juliana Berube, Environmental Conservation

Adaptive Silviculture for Wildlife: Supporting Forest Biodiversity Through Climate Adaptation , Jahiya Clark, Environmental Conservation

Comparing Likelihood of Tree Failure Assessments Using Different Assessment Techniques , Ari Okun, Environmental Conservation

Use of Unoccupied Aerial Vehicle (Drones) Based Remote Sensing to Model Platform Topography and Identify Human-made Earthen Barriers in Salt Marshes , Joshua J. Ward, Environmental Conservation

Theses from 2023 2023

Modeling the Effects of Forest Management Practices on Ecohydrologic Processes in the Antalya River Watershed of Turkey , Hilal Arslan, Environmental Conservation


Evaluation of Acoustic Telemetry Array Performance and Fine- Scale and Broad-Scale Spatial Movement Patterns for Coral Reef Species in Culebra, Puerto Rico , Roxann Cormier, Environmental Conservation

Improving Energy Efficiency of School Buildings with Solar-Assisted Cooling for the Maldives , Ahmed Fathhee, Environmental Conservation

Pine Barrens Wildlife Management: Exploring the Impact of a Stressor and Active Management on Two Taxa at Camp Edwards , Andrew B. Gordon Jr, Environmental Conservation

Factors Affecting the Distribution of Malayan Sun Bear in Htamanthi Wildlife Sanctuary, Northern Myanmar , Min Hein Htike, Environmental Conservation

A Multi-Regional Assessment of Eastern Whip-poor-will (Antrostomus vociferus) Occupancy in Managed and Unmanaged Forests Using Autonomous Recording Units , Jeffery T. Larkin, Environmental Conservation

Climate Change Attitudes of United States Family Forest Owners and their Influence on Forest Management Practices , Logan Miller, Environmental Conservation

The Relative Effects of Functional Diversity and Structural Complexity on Carbon Dynamics in Late-Successional, Northeastern Mixed Hardwood Forests , Samantha Myers, Environmental Conservation

Factors influencing the occurrence and spread of aquatic invasive species in watershed systems , Hazel M. Ortiz, Environmental Conservation



Effect of Alliaria petiolata management on post-eradication seed bank dynamics , Chloe Thompson, Environmental Conservation

Bog Turtle (Glyptemys muhlenbergii) Population Dynamics and Response to Habitat Management in Massachusetts , Julia Vineyard, Environmental Conservation

Theses from 2022 2022

Assessment of the Economic and Ecosystem Service Contributions of USDA Forest Service Landowner Assistance Programs in the Conterminous United States , Jacqueline S. Dias, Environmental Conservation

Exploring Urban Forestry Non-Governmental Organizations in the Temperate Forest Region of the United States , Alexander J. Elton, Environmental Conservation

Songbird-mediated Insect Pest Control in Low Intensity New England Agriculture , Samuel J. Mayne, Environmental Conservation

Perception and Value Assessment of Ecosystem Services in Rural and Urban Regions in Ecuador , Roberto S. Navarrete Arias, Environmental Conservation

Identifying New Invasives In The Face Of Climate Change: A Focus On Sleeper Populations , Ayodelé C. O'Uhuru, Environmental Conservation

A Tipping Point in the Ecuadorian Amazon Rainforest: Current and Future Land-Use and Climate Change Trends , Alula Shields, Environmental Conservation

Dynamics of Water Supply and Demand in the Bandama River Watershed of Cote d'Ivoire , Sarah Alima Traore, Environmental Conservation

Theses from 2021 2021

Applying Ecological Theory to Amphibian Populations to Determine if Wood Frogs (Lithobates sylvaticus) are Ideal and Free when Selecting Breeding Habitat , Taylor M. Braunagel, Environmental Conservation

Assessing the Impacts to Society Associated with the Use of Alternative Ammunition for Hunting on National Wildlife Refuges , Christopher Cahill, Environmental Conservation

Evaluation of Environmental Factors Influencing American Marten Distribution and Density in New Hampshire , Donovan Drummey, Environmental Conservation

Can Volunteers Learn to Prune Trees? , Ryan W. Fawcett, Environmental Conservation

The Efficacy of Habitat Conservation Assistance Programs for Family Forest Owners in Vermont , Margaret E. Harrington, Environmental Conservation

The Role of Vegetative Cover in Enhancing Resilience to Climate Change and Improving Public Health , Anastasia D. Ivanova, Environmental Conservation

Assessing the Structure and Function of Utility Forests in Massachusetts , Ryan Suttle, Environmental Conservation

Factors Influencing Stopover and Movement of Migratory Songbirds within the Silvio O. Conte National Fish and Wildlife Refuge , Jessica Tatten, Environmental Conservation

Patterns and mechanisms of intraspecific trait variation across thermal gradients in a marine gastropod , Andrew R. Villeneuve, Environmental Conservation

Theses from 2020 2020

Habitat Associations of Priority Bird Species and Conservation Value on Small, Diversified Farms in New England , Isabel Brofsky, Environmental Conservation

Autonomous Recording Units as an Alternative Method for Monitoring Songbirds , Lindsay Clough, Environmental Conservation

Impact of Predators on Hemlock Woolly Adelgid (Hemiptera: Adelgidae) in the Eastern and Western United States , Ryan Crandall, Environmental Conservation

New England’s Underutilized Seafood Species: Defining And Exploring Marketplace Potential In A Changing Climate , Amanda Davis, Environmental Conservation

Improving Growth and Survival of Cultured Yellow Lampmussel (Lampsilis cariosa) for Restoring Populations , Virginia Martell, Environmental Conservation

From Intentional Awareness to Environmental Action: The Relationship Between Mindfulness and Pro-Environmental Behaviors , Nischal Neupane, Environmental Conservation

The Ecological Value of Spruce Plantations in Massachusetts , Calvin Ritter, Environmental Conservation

In-vitro Propagation and Fish Assessments to Inform Restoration of Dwarf Wedgemussel (Alasmidonta Heterodon) , Jennifer Ryan, Environmental Conservation

Theses from 2019 2019

Hydrologic Structure and Function of Vernal Pools in South Deerfield, Massachusetts , Charlotte Axthelm, Environmental Conservation

Ecological and Economic Implications of Establishing Quercus spp. in the Urban Environment , Tierney Bocsi, Environmental Conservation

Garlic Mustard (Alliaria petiolata) Management Effectiveness and Plant Community Response , Erin Coates-Connor, Environmental Conservation

Defining and Addressing Interconnected Goals in Groundwater Management Planning Across the USA , Allison Gage, Environmental Conservation

Root-Driven Weathering Impacts on Mineral-Organic Associations Over Pedogenic Time Scales , Mariela Garcia Arredondo, Environmental Conservation

Using Visual Media to Empower Citizen Scientists: A Case Study of the Outsmart App , Megan E. Kierstead, Environmental Conservation

Urban Biodiversity Experience and Exposure: Intervention and Inequality at the Local and Global Scale , Evan Kuras, Environmental Conservation

Arboriculture Safety Around The World , Jamie Lim, Environmental Conservation

Ecological Considerations and Application of Urban Tree Selection in Massachusetts , Ashley McElhinney, Environmental Conservation

The Women's Action: Participation through Resistance , Michael Roberts, Environmental Conservation

Eastern Whip-poor-will Habitat Associations in Fort Drum, NY , Kimberly Spiller, Environmental Conservation

The Role of International River Basin Organizations in Facilitating Science Use in Policy , Kelsey Wentling, Environmental Conservation

An Examination of Tern Diet in a Changing Gulf of Maine , Keenan Yakola, Environmental Conservation

Theses from 2018 2018

Mapping Sandbars in the Connecticut River Watershed through Aerial Images for Floodplain Conservation , Bogumila Backiel, Environmental Conservation

You Must Estimate Before You Indicate: Design and Model-Based Methods for Evaluating Utility of a Candidate Forest Indicator Species , Jillian Fleming, Environmental Conservation

Performance of Floristic Quality Assessment in Massachusetts Forested Wetlands , Carolyn Gorss, Environmental Conservation

The Impact of Intraspecific Density on Garlic Mustard Sinigrin Concentration , Mercedes Harris, Environmental Conservation

Plants, Parasites, and Pollinators: The Effects of Medicinal Pollens on a Common Gut Parasite in Bumble Bees , George LoCascio, Environmental Conservation

Human and Climate Change Influences on Black (Diceros bicornis) and White (Ceratotherium simum) Rhinos in Southern Africa , Hlelolwenkhosi S. Mamba, Environmental Conservation

Watershed-Scale Modeling for Water Resource Sustainability in the Tuul River Basin of Mongolia , Javzansuren Norvanchig, Environmental Conservation

Impacts of Small, Surface-Release Dams on Stream Temperature and Dissolved Oxygen in Massachusetts , Peter Zaidel, Environmental Conservation

Theses from 2017 2017

Accounting For Biotic Variability In Streams With Low Levels of Impervious Cover: The Role of Reach- and Watershed-Scale Factors , Catherine Bentsen, Environmental Conservation

Juvenile River Herring in Freshwater Lakes: Sampling Approaches for Evaluating Growth and Survival , Matthew T. Devine, Environmental Conservation



Botswana’s Elephant-Back Safari Industry – Stress-Response in Working African Elephants and Analysis of their Post-Release Movements , Tanya Lama, Environmental Conservation

Factors Influencing Shrubland Bird and Native Bee Communities in Forest Openings , H. Patrick Roberts, Environmental Conservation

A Mixed-methods Study on Female Landowner Estate Planning Objectives , rebekah zimmerer, Environmental Conservation

Theses from 2016 2016

Factors Influencing Household Outdoor Residential Water Use Decisions in Suburban Boston (USA) , Emily E. Argo, Environmental Conservation

Understory Plant Community Structure in Forests Invaded by Garlic Mustard (Alliaria petiolata) , Jason Aylward, Environmental Conservation

Factors Affecting Habitat Quality for Wintering Wood Thrushes in a Coffee Growing Region in Honduras , Brett A. Bailey, Environmental Conservation

Invasive Species Occurrence Frequency is not a Suitable Proxy for Abundance in the Northeast , Tyler J. Cross, Environmental Conservation

Population Genetic Analysis of Atlantic Horseshoe Crabs (Limulus polyphemus) in Coastal Massachusetts. , Katherine T. Johnson, Environmental Conservation

Modeling Historical and Future Range of Variability Scenarios in the Yuba River Watershed, Tahoe National Forest, California , Maritza Mallek, Environmental Conservation

The Life History Characteristics, Growth, and Mortality of Juvenile Alewife, Alosa pseudoharengus, in Coastal Massachusetts , Julianne Rosset, Environmental Conservation

Specific Phosphate Sorption Mechanisms of Unaltered and Altered Biochar , Kathryn D. Szerlag, Environmental Conservation

Trophic Relationships Among Caribou Calf Predators in Newfoundland , Chris Zieminski, Environmental Conservation

Theses from 2015 2015

Ant (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) Assemblages in Three New York Pine Barrens and the Impacts of Hiking Trails , Grace W. Barber, Environmental Conservation

Niche-Based Modeling of Japanese Stiltgrass (Microstegium vimineum) Using Presence-Only Information , Nathan Bush, Environmental Conservation

Assessing Mammal and Bird Biodiversity and Habitat Occupancy of Tiger Prey in the Hukaung Valley of Northern Myanmar , Hla Naing, Environmental Conservation

Generating Best Management Practices for Avian Conservation in a Land-Sparing Agriculture System, and the Habitat-Specific Survival of a Priority Migrant , Jeffrey D. Ritterson, Environmental Conservation

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The power of urban planning on environmental sustainability: a focus group study in finland  †.

thesis in environmental planning

1. Introduction

2. research design, 2.1. focus group method, 2.2. thematic analysis of focus group data, 2.3. data collection.

The organisations represented by the participants of each focus group.
Focus Group 1Focus Group 2Focus Group 3
1The city of Helsinki1The city of Espoo1The city of Vantaa
2The city of Tampere2The city of Tampere2The city of Tampere
3The city of Joensuu3The city of Lohja3The city of Lohja
4The city of Lappeenranta4The city of Kokkola4The city of Kotka
5The city of Pori5The city of Kouvola5The city of Lahti
6Construction company #16The city of Kuopio6The city of Mikkeli
7Energy company #17The city of Lappeenranta7Ministry of the Environment
8Green Building Council Finland8Green Building Council Finland8RAKLI
9Consulting company #19Architectural firm #19Architectural firm #2
10Consulting company #210Consulting company #310Consulting company #2
11Consulting company #411Consulting company #4

2.4. Data Analysis

3. findings, 3.1. assessment of environmental sustainability in urban planning.

“ Our climate strategy is very ambitious .” (Group 1)
“ The ambition to build carbon-neutral districts has a strong position in the city strategy .” (Group 1)
“ We have joined the network of carbon-neutral municipalities, and even our decision-makers are aware of the greenhouse gas reduction targets .” (Group 2)
“ Our aims of eco-efficiency are included in the city strategy, in the mayor’s program and in the climate programs, and the target is to make more eco-efficient land-use plans .” (Group 3)
“ There are not necessarily any greenhouse gas reduction targets, nor a climate strategy. It is easily vague the way that anything can be proved to be sustainable by suited defaults or weights .” (Group 3)
“ In my opinion, all issues other than environmental sustainability have been promoted more rapidly in decision-making. In some cities environmental sustainability is a political priority but in some others it depends very much on the officers on duty. We have had strategies and targets but nobody has ever been responsible for implementing them. It depends on who is involved and interested .” (Group 3)
“ Practically, nothing is assessed. Quite a lot has been done on gut feeling, without better knowledge.” (Group 2)
“ Common knowledge, what we have had of land use planning. If we had knowledge based on research, we could—people talk about these things so much nowadays.” (Group 2)
“ We tried. One student of environmental engineering prepared an assessment tool as a part of his thesis. We tested it but it leads to irrational results.” (Group 2)
“ We were close to buying into one of the Finnish commercial evaluation schemes. A variety of tools exists.” (Group 2)
The detailed reasons for assessing environmental sustainability in urban planning.
(1) To increase the environmental knowledge of the people involved in the planning and decision-making process, in more detail:Which focus groups identified the detailed reason:
 To understand environmental consequencesGroup 1-Group 3
 To label environmentally sustainable urban structures-Group 2Group 3
 To gain broader understanding (of greenhouse gas emissions)Group 1--
 To examine the environmental benefits of high urban densityGroup 1--
 To justify higher urban densityGroup 1-Group 3
 To find differencesGroup 1Group 2-
 To enable benchmarkingGroup 1Group 2-
 For marketing purposesGroup 1Group 2-
 To facilitate negotiations with stakeholders-Group 2-
 To enable or to promote environmental sustainabilityGroup 1Group 2Group 3
 Not to prevent environmental sustainabilityGroup 1--
 To reduce greenhouse gas emissionsGroup 1-Group 3

3.2. The Steering Effect of Environmental Assessment to Decision-Making

“Climate change has been a minor factor in decision-making.” (Group 1)
“It is euros that drive it. The municipal economy dominates. Unfortunately very few people think about the bigger picture, even in an economic sense.” “Yes, that is the traditional way to make decisions in municipalities.” (Group 2)
“It is obvious what the decision-makers think of when eco-efficiency and cost-efficiency are against each other.” “What do they think of? Let us know.” “Of costs.” (Group 1)
“If municipalities were involved in carbon trading, low-carbon land use plans would most probably proceed at a good pace.” (Group 2)
“Win-win solutions [both environmental and monetary benefits] work well.” (Group 3)
“In my opinion, the politicians spend all their time on economic considerations. They do not have time for environmental issues.” (Group 3)
“Environmental issues are too complicated for an ordinary person who still has to deal with them. Contradictory information makes the challenge unbearable.” (Group 1)
“The message should be simple enough that the decision-makers could understand it.” (Group 2)
“It would be easier for the decision-makers to make good decisions if we could prove our arguments.” (Group 3)
“For decision-making, it must be proven that something is more environmentally sustainable than something else.” (Group 1)
“We do not have metrics for measuring eco-efficiency.” (Group 3)
“Environmental sustainability is a relatively new aspect in decision-making, and the environmental considerations do not have a common unit, which would be as easy to understand as euros in an economic framework.” (Group 1)
“Municipalities set some (greenhouse gas emission reduction) targets and then afterwards try to figure out, with the help of consultants, if they are being achieved, and if not, which actions should be taken. Currently we don’t really have tools in place that could advise land use planners to mitigate the climate change.” (Group 2)
“It is still unclear when and how the improvements should be done to truly have an effect.” (Group 1)
“Both urban planners and decision-makers need better knowledge.” (Group 1)
“We need better knowledge to prove things—to justify our suggestions.” (Group 2)
“Decision-makers understand numbers. As long as we lean on qualitative reasoning, economic considerations dominate the environmental ones.” (Group 3)
“One must be like a horn to bring those (environmental) issues forth—to create an atmosphere that this is important.” (Group 3)
”If our solutions fit the definitions of policy, the chances are better that they will be accepted.” (Group 3)
“It can be a self-reinforcing process. Increased understanding and obvious results make it easier and it can affect the strategy. The new strategy can then facilitate further improvements.” (Group 3)
“A good example of obvious results in one city helps the progress in the others.” (Group 3)

3.3. The Role of Urban Planning and Urban Planners in Environmental Sustainability

“We must remember that a land use planner can ordain just anything. Land use planning truly has the means to make a difference.” (Group 2)
“Basically we create the options but do not make the decision between them. The decision-makers very rarely add anything to the plans but they may well not let something through.” (Group 3)
“Land use planners do not make all the decisions. We arrange the traffic but do not choose the fuel for the combined heat and power production.” (Group 1)
“We can impact urban structure but not of how private companies and municipal decision-making support our solutions. The planned bus routes may not materialise and the schools may be disbanded.” (Group 2)
“Even decision-making does not always lead to operation. We wait for something to happen but everything happens so very slowly.” (Group 3)
“The route selection of bus companies cannot be affected in any way, nor can the network of schools and kindergartens. Reservations can be put into the land use plans, but different logic applies to how they are closed down.” ”I think it is true, but the need to travel and the means of transportation, that we do have power on. I would not be as pessimistic considering the routes of public transport either—cities and municipalities do have the possibility to get involved in developing those services.” “Yes, if they want to.” “And the locations of markets and schools and kindergartens are defined in particular by land use planning.” ”But we cannot affect the thing that they may be closed down.” (Group 2)
“Could you name something important that you would like to affect through land use planning?” “People’s lifestyles, but it is not an easy thing.” ”Yeah, people’s behaviour cannot be affected in any way.” (Group 2)
“We cannot affect people’s lifestyles.” (Group 3)
“People’s leisure time is an impossible field—something we cannot affect.” (Group 2)
“Then I started to think about electric cars. Their batteries work better if the cars are not left outdoors in freezing temperatures. Should we include in land use plans orders to build heated garages underneath the apartment houses or something similar—it would be a way to affect.” (Group 2)
“If travelling is bad, how about a community that we would build huge pentagons everywhere, where shopping malls, apartments and working places would be located all inside the same walls and there would be a public recreational area in the centre of the building? Blocks like that.” “You are not allowed to leave.” “You need a special permission to leave.” “In some eastern countries there are those huge houses.” “A closed ecosystem.” “Effectively limits travelling.” (Group 2)

3.4. Urban Density

“These questions of higher urban density are surely topical in every city, in one way and another.” (Group 1)
“The important thing is the land use efficiency: the difference between higher density through complementary construction and sprawl through new housing areas. Land use planning has an important stand there.” (Group 2)
“The basis for higher urban density is the same everywhere: to grow inwards, if it is the right thing to do.” (Group 3)
“We have a problem in that if we compress the city structure it almost always means that some green areas that are important for some people will be touched. It is inevitable. We are accused all the time of stealing green areas under the guise of climate change mitigation. To defend our proposals we should be able to measure total environmental sustainability, I think. We might for example have a low-carbon solution that is not disastrous for the local eco-system services either.” (Group 1)
“Because cities grow anyway, if we plan denser urban structure the environmental benefit is the prevention of urban sprawl. We assume it to be extremely effective climate change mitigation. ” (Group 1)
“ I believe that there are multiple reasons why complementary construction is very ecological, perhaps even more ecological than we currently think.” (Group 1)
“Because we have to let people build detached houses, density is very low in new residential areas and respectively the estimate of environmental sustainability is very bad.” (Group 1)
“It is important to bring the message to the decision-making process that complementary construction is far more environmentally sustainable because it might be an alternative to a new residential area. We show that because density is low in new residential areas they cannot be environmentally sustainable.” ”Exactly, that urban density is a key issue.” (Group 1)
“The question is, how to make people willing to live densely, close to each other.” (Group 2)
“ The more rural the municipality, the more difficult it is for the land use planners to reason higher density. We need to be able to show people that it is important environmentally.” (Group 3)
“Even if higher urban density is a priority it is not being realised properly. We need to be able to show the negative environmental impact of urban sprawl. ” (Group 3)
“The old wooden cities are relatively dense and thus environmentally sustainable per se .” (Group 3)
“[…] — if higher urban density really improves environmental sustainability.” (Group 1)
“There are contradictory results concerning whether density is ideal.” (Group 1)
“At which point is urban density taken too far to the point that it deteriorates the local ecosystem services? Could it be that in some cases less radical density might be better environmentally?” (Group 3)
“There should be a comparison of whether it’s better to grow inwards or outwards in each case. In those cities where there is still land available and thus other alternatives to growing inwards, the other alternatives should be considered.” (Group 3)

3.5. Summary

Summary of the main findings.
Research questionData typeMain findings
(1) Why is environmental sustainability assessed in urban planning?ArticulatedIn many Finnish cities urban planning has rather ambitious greenhouse gas reduction targets. However, environmental sustainability is not always assessed.
Environmental sustainability is, or should be, assessed for three main reasons: (1) to increase the environmental knowledge of the people involved in the planning and decision-making process; (2) to prove that certain alternatives are environmentally more sustainable than others; and (3) to enable or to promote or not to prevent environmental sustainability.
(2) How does environmental assessment steer decision-making in urban planning?ArticulatedShort-term economic interests dominate municipal decision-making.
Environmental issues are complex in general and very complex to quantify, which deteriorates their position in decision-making.
The domination of short-term economic interest in decision-making can also be challenged. First, the environmental considerations have to be presented as numbers. Second, the environmental aims should support or to be included in the city strategies and political agendas, not to conflict with them.
(3) What is the role of urban planning and urban planners in environmental sustainability?ArticulatedIn the context of current Finnish urban planning, improved environmental sustainability mainly refers to climate change mitigation, more specifically to the greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions of traffic and housing (the energy use of buildings, in particular).
It was highlighted that land use planning can only enable, not force environmental improvements.
AttributionalThe land use planners from different cities and municipalities share the ambition to design environmentally sustainable urban environments.
On the one hand, urban planners can suggest almost anything. On the other hand, the lack of co-operation and joint environmental aims restrains their mandate.
The power of urban planners to promote environmental issues can also be limited by their own beliefs. The participants did not see a connection between urban structure and lifestyles or consumption choices, apart from housing and daily journeys.
(4) How is urban density considered in terms of environmentally sustainable land use?AttributionalUrban density is a hot topic in land use planning.
High urban density is seen to be a key issue in the environmental sustainability of urban areas.
The dominant belief is that densification has a strong positive impact on environmental sustainability.
Increased environmental knowledge is seen to be useful, for examining the environmental benefits of high urban density and for justifying higher urban density, amongst other things.

4. Discussion

5. conclusions, acknowledgments, author contributions, conflicts of interest.

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Säynäjoki, E.-S.; Heinonen, J.; Junnila, S. The Power of Urban Planning on Environmental Sustainability: A Focus Group Study in Finland. Sustainability 2014 , 6 , 6622-6643.

Säynäjoki E-S, Heinonen J, Junnila S. The Power of Urban Planning on Environmental Sustainability: A Focus Group Study in Finland. Sustainability . 2014; 6(10):6622-6643.

Säynäjoki, Eeva-Sofia, Jukka Heinonen, and Seppo Junnila. 2014. "The Power of Urban Planning on Environmental Sustainability: A Focus Group Study in Finland" Sustainability 6, no. 10: 6622-6643.

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  • AN ACCUMULATION OF CATASTROPHE: A POLITICAL ECONOMY OF WILDFIRE IN THE WESTERN UNITED STATES  Dockstader, Sue ( University of Oregon , 2024-03-25 ) This dissertation is an environmental sociological study of wildland fire in what is now the western United States. It examines wildfire management from roughly the 1900s to the present time employing a Marxist historical ...
  • Managing Life's Future: Species Essentialism and Evolutionary Normativity in Conservation Policy, Practice, and Imaginaries  Maggiulli, Katrina ( University of Oregon , 2024-01-10 ) Folk essentialist and normative understandings of species are not only prevalent in popular layperson communities, but also end up undergirding United States conservation policy and practice due to the simplistic clarity ...
  • Unsettled Ecologies: Alienated Species, Indigenous Restoration, and U.S. Empire in a Time of Climate Chaos  Fink, Lisa ( University of Oregon , 2024-01-10 ) This dissertation traces environmental thinking about invasive species from Western-colonial, diasporic settlers of color, and Indigenous perspectives within U.S. settler colonialism. Considering environmental discourses ...
  • Futuremaking in a Disaster Zone: Everyday Climate Change Adaptation amongst Quechua Women in the Peruvian Cordillera Blanca  Moulton, Holly ( University of Oregon , 2024-01-10 ) Indigenous women in Peru are often labeled “triply vulnerable” to climate change due to race, gender, and economic marginalization. Despite Peru’s focus on gender, Indigeneity, and intersectionality in national adaptation ...
  • Land Acts: Land's Agency in American Literature, Law, and History from the Colonial Period to Removal  Keeler, Kyle ( University of Oregon , 2024-01-10 ) This dissertation examines land’s agency and relationships to land in the places now known as the United States as these relationships appear in literature and law from early colonization to the removal period. Land Acts ...
  • PALEOTEMPERATURE, VEGETATION CHANGE, FIRE HISTORY, AND LAKE PRODUCTIVITY FOR THE LAST 14,500 YEARS AT GOLD LAKE, PACIFIC NORTHWEST, USA  Baig, Jamila ( University of Oregon , 2024-01-09 ) The postglacial history of vegetation, wildfire, and climate in the Cascade Range (Oregon) is only partly understood. This study uses high-resolution analysis from a 13-meter, 14,500-year sediment core from Gold Lake to ...
  • On Western Juniper Climate Relations  Reis, Schyler ( University of Oregon , 2022-10-26 ) Western juniper woodlands are highly sensitive to climate in terms of tree-ring growth, seedling establishment and range distribution. Understanding the dynamics of western juniper woodlands to changes in precipitation, ...
  • Stories We Tell, Stories We Eat: Mexican Foodways, Cultural Identity, and Ideological Struggle in Netflix’s Taco Chronicles  Sanchez, Bela ( University of Oregon , 2022-10-26 ) Food is a biological necessity imbued with numerous social, cultural, and economic implications for identity production and everyday meaning-making. Food television is a unique medium for the meanings of food and foodways ...
  • Soil Nutrient Additions Shift Orthopteran Herbivory and Invertebrate Community Composition  Altmire, Gabriella ( University of Oregon , 2022-10-26 ) Anthropogenic alterations to global pools of nitrogen and phosphorus are driving declines in plant diversity across grasslands. As such, concern over biodiversity loss has precipitated a host of studies investigating how ...
  • Multispecies Memoir: Self, Genre, and Species Justice in Contemporary Culture  Otjen, Nathaniel ( University of Oregon , 2022-10-04 ) Liberal humanism articulates an individual, rational, autonomous, universal, and singularly human subject that possesses various rights and freedoms. Although the imagined subject at the heart of liberal humanist philosophy ...
  • Understanding How Changes in Disturbance Regimes and Long-Term Climate Shape Ecosystem and Landscape Structure and Function  Wright, Jamie ( University of Oregon , 2022-10-04 ) Long-term and anthropic climatic change intersecting with disturbances alters ecosystem structure and function across spatiotemporal scales. Quantifying ecosystem responses can be convoluted, therefore utilizing multiproxy ...
  • Ikpíkyav (To Fix Again): Drawing From Karuk World Renewal To Contest Settler Discourses Of Vulnerability  Vinyeta, Kirsten ( University of Oregon , 2022-10-04 ) The Klamath River Basin of Northern California has historically been replete with fire-adapted ecosystems and Indigenous communities. For the Karuk Tribe, fire has been an indispensable tool for both spiritual practice and ...
  • Grassland Restoration in Heterogeneous, Changing, and Human Dominated Systems  Brambila, Alejandro ( University of Oregon , 2022-10-04 ) Ecological restoration is a powerful tool to promote biodiversity and ecosystem function. Understanding underlying system variability and directional change can help predict outcomes of restoration interventions. Spatial ...
  • Restoring What? And for Whom? Listening to Karuk Ecocultural Revitalization Practitioners and Uncovering Settler Logics in Ecological Restoration.  Worl, Sara ( University of Oregon , 2022-05-10 ) What does it mean to restore a landscape degraded by settler colonialism? How might a well intentionedprocess like ecological restoration end up causing harm from underlying settler colonial logics? This thesis explores ...
  • Instigating Communities of Solidarity: An Exploration of Participatory, Informal, Temporary Urbanisms  Meier, Briana ( University of Oregon , 2021-11-23 ) This dissertationexamines the potential for participatory, informal urbanisms to buildcollaborative relations across ontological, cultural, and political difference. This research contributes to thefield of urban, environmental ...
  • The Holy Oak School of Art and Ecology: A Proposal for Arts-Based Environmental Education Programming  Best, Krysta ( University of Oregon , 2021-11-23 ) The following is a proposal for arts-based environmental education programming in elementary schools, after-school programs, and day-camp programs, entitled the Holy School of Art and Ecology. Ecophenomenological, arts-based ...
  • Settler Colonial Listening and the Silence of Wilderness in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area  Hilgren, Bailey ( University of Oregon , 2021-11-23 ) The Boundary Waters Canoe Area soundscape in northern Minnesota has a long and contested history but is most often characterized today as a pristine and distinctly silent wilderness. This thesis traces the construction and ...
  • Species Dynamics and Restoration in Rare Serpentine Grasslands under Global Change  Hernandez, Eliza ( University of Oregon , 2021-11-23 ) Conserving rare serpentine grasslands is a challenge with ongoing nitrogen deposition. Nutrient-poor patches are fertilized by nitrogen-rich smog and exotic grasses can rapidly spread. Water resources are also being altered ...
  • Place-making and Place-taking: An Analysis of Green Gentrification in Atlanta Georgia  Okotie-Oyekan, Aimée ( University of Oregon , 2021-11-23 ) Despite the benefits of urban greenspace, Atlanta’s Westside Park is causing gentrification and displacement pressures in Grove Park, a low-income African-American community in northwest Atlanta, Georgia. This study used ...
  • Prairie Plant Responses to Climate Change in the Pacific Northwest  Reed, Paul ( University of Oregon , 2021-09-13 ) Understanding how plants respond to climate change is of paramount importance since their responses can affect ecosystem functions and patterns of biodiversity. At the population level, climate change may alter phenology ...

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Home > School, College, or Department > CUPA > USP > Dissertations and Theses

Urban Studies and Planning Dissertations and Theses

Theses/dissertations from 2023 2023.

E Hui me ke Kaiāulu: To Connect with the Community , Heather Kayleen Bartlett (Thesis)

The Affective Discourses of Eviction: Right to Counsel in New York City , Hadley Savana Bates (Thesis)

A Just Futures Framework: Insurgent Roller-Skating in Portland, Oregon , Célia Camile Beauchamp (Thesis)

Factors Affecting Community Rating System Participation in the National Flood Insurance Program: A Case Study of Texas , Ryan David Eddings (Dissertation)

LEED Buildings and Green Gentrification: Portland as a Case Study , Jordan Macintosh (Thesis)

Wasted Space , Ryan Martyn (Thesis)

The Use and Influence of Health Indicators in Municipal Transportation Plans , Kelly Christine Rodgers (Dissertation)

Uncovering the Nuance and Complexity of Gentrification in Asian Immigrant Communities: A Case Study of Koreatown, Los Angeles , Seyoung Sung (Dissertation)

Defining Dementia-Friendly Communities From the Perspective of Those Affected , Iris Alexandra Wernher (Dissertation)

Theses/Dissertations from 2022 2022

Heat, Wildfire and Energy Demand: An Examination of Residential Buildings and Community Equity , Chrissi Argyro Antonopoulos (Dissertation)

The Connections Between Innovation, Culture, and Expertise in Water Infrastructure Organizations , Alice Brawley-Chesworth (Dissertation)

The New Shiny Penny? Regenerative Agriculture Beliefs and Practices Among Portland's Urban Agriculturalists , Melia Ann Chase (Thesis)

Fortunate People in a Fortunate Land: Dwelling and Residential Alienation in Santa Monica's Rent-Controlled Housing , Lauren E.M. Everett (Dissertation)

In Favor of Bringing Game Theory into Urban Studies and Planning Curriculum: Reintroducing an Underused Method for the Next Generation of Urban Scholars , Brian McDonald Gardner (Thesis)

Transportation Mode Choice Behavior in the Era of Autonomous Vehicles: The Application of Discrete Choice Modeling and Machine Learning , Sangwan Lee (Dissertation)

An Analysis of the Strengths and Weaknesses of the Tulsa Remote Program, As an Effective Economic Development Strategy , Kristen J. Padilla (Thesis)

Geographies of Urban Unsafety: Homeless Women, Mental Maps, and Isolation , Jan Radle Roberson (Dissertation)

The Impact of New Light Rail Service on Employment Growth in Portland, Oregon , Lahar Santra (Thesis)

Examining Emergency Citizen Response to the COVID-19 Pandemic: Emergent Groups Addressing Food Insecurity in Portland, Oregon , Aliza Ruth Tuttle (Thesis)

Theses/Dissertations from 2021 2021

Nature-Based Solutions in Environmental Planning: Ecosystem-Based Adaptations, Green Infrastructures, and Ecosystem Services to Promote Diversity in Urban Landscapes , Lorena Alves Carvalho Nascimento (Dissertation)

Gas Stations and the Wealth Divide: Analyzing Spatial Correlations Between Wealth and Fuel Branding , Jean-Carl Ende (Thesis)

'There are No Bathrooms Available!': How Older Adults Experiencing Houselessness Manage their Daily Activities , Ellis Jourdan Hews (Thesis)

The Mode Less Traveled: Exploring Bicyclist Identity in Portland, OR , Christopher Johnson (Thesis)

The Soniferous Experience of Public Space: A Soundscape Approach , Kenya DuBois Williams (Dissertation)

Short-term and Long-term Effects of New Light Rail Transit Service on Transit Ridership and Traffic Congestion at Two Geographical Levels , Huajie Yang (Dissertation)

Theses/Dissertations from 2020 2020

Waste Management in the Global South: an Inquiry on the Patterns of Plastic and Waste Material Flows in Colombo, Sri Lanka , Katie Ann Conlon (Dissertation)

Unpacking the Process and Outcomes of Ethical Markets: a Focus on Certified B Corporations , Renée Bogin Curtis (Dissertation)

The Persistence of Indigenous Markets in Mexico's 'Supermarket Revolution' , Diana Christina Denham (Dissertation)

The Electronic Hardware Music Subculture in Portland, Oregon , James Andrew Hickey (Thesis)

"I Should Have Moved Somewhere Else": the Impacts of Gentrification on Transportation and Social Support for Black Working-Poor Families in Portland, Oregon , Steven Anthony Howland (Dissertation)

The Impacts of the Bicycle Network on Bicycling Activity: a Longitudinal Multi-City Approach , Wei Shi (Dissertation)

Theses/Dissertations from 2019 2019

"Poverty Wages Are Not Fresh, Local, or Sustainable": Building Worker Power by Organizing Around (Re)production in Portland's "Sustainable" Food Industry , Amy Katherine Rose Coplen (Dissertation)

Manufacturing in Place: Industrial Preservation in the US , Jamaal William Green (Dissertation)

Can Churches Change a Neighborhood? A Census Tract, Multilevel Analysis of Churches and Neighborhood Change , David E. Kresta (Dissertation)

An Examination of Non-waged Labor and Local Food Movement Growth in the Southern Appalachians , Amy Kathryn Marion (Thesis)

Making Imaginaries: Identity, Value, and Place in the Maker Movement in Detroit and Portland , Stephen Joseph Marotta (Dissertation)

Recognizing and Addressing Risk Ambiguity in Sea Level Rise Adaptation Planning: a Case Study of Miami-Dade County, Florida , Mary Ann Rozance (Dissertation)

The Impact of Implementing Different Cordon Size Designs on Land Use Patterns in Portland, OR , Asia Spilotros (Dissertation)

Gentrification and Student Achievement: a Quantitative Analysis of Student Performance on Standardized Tests in Portland's Gentrifying Neighborhoods , Justin Joseph Ward (Thesis)

Theses/Dissertations from 2018 2018

Environmental Justice in Natural Disaster Mitigation Policy and Planning: a Case Study of Flood Risk Management in Johnson Creek, Portland, Oregon , Seong Yun Cho (Dissertation)

Our Town: Articulating Place Meanings and Attachments in St. Johns Using Resident-Employed Photography , Lauren Elizabeth Morrow Everett (Thesis)

Millennial Perceptions on Homeownership and Financial Planning Decisions , Margaret Ann Greenfield (Thesis)

Utilitarian Skateboarding: Insight into an Emergent Mode of Mobility , Michael Joseph Harpool (Thesis)

Consciousness Against Commodifcation: the Potential for a Radical Housing Movement in the Cully Neighborhood , Cameron Hart Herrington (Thesis)

News Work: the Impact of Corporate Newsroom Culture on News Workers & Community Reporting , Carey Lynne Higgins-Dobney (Dissertation)

Recent Advances in Activity-Based Travel Demand Models for Greater Flexibility , Kihong Kim (Dissertation)

An Analysis of the BizX Commercial Trade Exchange: the Attitudes and Motivations Behind Its Use , Ján André Montoya (Thesis)

Between a Rock and a Hot Place: Economic Development and Climate Change Adaptation in Vietnam , Khanh Katherine Pham (Thesis)

Neighborhood Economic Impacts of Contemporary Art Centers , Steve Van Eck (Closed Thesis)

Urban Geocomputation: Two Studies on Urban Form and its Role in Altering Climate , Jackson Lee Voelkel (Thesis)

Theses/Dissertations from 2017 2017

Explaining Unequal Transportation Outcomes in a Gentrifying City: the Example of Portland, Oregon , Eugenio Arriaga Cordero (Dissertation)

Identifying Clusters of Non-Farm Activity within Exclusive Farm Use Zones in the Northern Willamette Valley , Nicholas Chun (Thesis)

Drivers' Attitudes and Behaviors Toward Bicyclists: Intermodal Interactions and Implications for Road Safety , Tara Beth Goddard (Dissertation)

Grassroots Resistance in the Sustainable City: Portland Harbor Superfund Site Contamination, Cleanup, and Collective Action , Erin Katherine Goodling (Dissertation)

Responsible Pet Ownership: Dog Parks and Demographic Change in Portland, Oregon , Matthew Harris (Thesis)

The Tension between Technocratic and Social Values in Environmental Decision-making: An'Yang Stream Restoration in South Korea , Chang-Yu Hong (Dissertation)

Regulating Pavement Dwellers: the Politics of the Visibly Poor in Public Space , Lauren Marie Larin (Dissertation)

Making Software, Making Regions: Labor Market Dualization, Segmentation, and Feminization in Austin, Portland and Seattle , Dillon Mahmoudi (Dissertation)

Knowing Nature in the City: Comparative Analysis of Knowledge Systems Challenges Along the 'Eco-Techno' Spectrum of Green Infrastructure in Portland & Baltimore , Annie Marissa Matsler (Dissertation)

Assessing the Impact of Land Use and Travel on Carbon Dioxide Emissions in Portland, Oregon , Zakari Mumuni (Thesis)

Trade-offs: the Production of Sustainability in Households , Kirstin Marie Elizabeth Munro (Dissertation)

Theses/Dissertations from 2016 2016

The Kazaks of Istanbul: A Case of Social Cohesion, Economic Breakdown and the Search for a Moral Economy , Daniel Marc Auger (Thesis)

Citizen-led Urban Agriculture and the Politics of Spatial Reappropriation in Montreal, Quebec , Claire Emmanuelle Bach (Thesis)

Travel Mode Choice Framework Incorporating Realistic Bike and Walk Routes , Joseph Broach (Dissertation)

Cyclist Path Choices Through Shared Space Intersections in England , Allison Boyce Duncan (Dissertation)

Star Academics: Do They Garner Increasing Returns? , James Jeffrey Kline (Dissertation)

Configuring the Urban Smart Grid: Transitions, Experimentation, and Governance , Anthony Michael Levenda (Dissertation)

The Effects of Frequency of Social Interaction, Social Cohesion, Age, and the Built Environment on Walking , Gretchen Allison Luhr (Dissertation)

The Village Market: New Columbia Goes Shopping for Food Justice , Jane Therese Waddell (Dissertation)

Theses/Dissertations from 2015 2015

Developing Key Sustainability Competencies through Real-World Learning Experiences: Evaluating Community Environmental Services , Erin Lorene Anderson (Thesis)

Beyond Fruit: Examining Community in a Community Orchard , Emily Jane Becker (Thesis)

Challenges, Experiences, and Future Directions of Senior Centers Serving the Portland Metropolitan Area , Melissa Lynn Cannon (Dissertation)

Building Social Sustainability from the Ground Up: The Contested Social Dimension of Sustainability in Neighborhood-Scale Urban Regeneration in Portland, Copenhagen, and Nagoya , Jacklyn Nicole Kohon (Dissertation)

The Effects of Urban Containment Policies on Commuting Patterns , Sung Moon Kwon (Dissertation)

Energy Efficiency and Conservation Attitudes: An Exploration of a Landscape of Choices , Mersiha Spahic McClaren (Dissertation)

The Impact of Communication Impairments on the Social Relationships of Older Adults , Andrew Demetrius Palmer (Dissertation)

The Scales and Shapes of Queer Women's Geographies: Mapping Private, Public and Cyber Spaces in Portland, OR , Paola Renata Saldaña (Thesis)

Caring for the Land, Serving People: Creating a Multicultural Forest Service in the Civil Rights Era , Donna Lynn Sinclair (Dissertation)

Theses/Dissertations from 2014 2014

Determinants of Recent Mover Non-work Travel Mode Choice , Arlie Steven Adkins (Dissertation)

Changing the Face of the Earth: The Morrison-­Knudsen Corporation as Partner to the U.S. Federal Government , Christopher S. Blanchard (Dissertation)

Participation, Information, Values, and Community Interests Within Health Impact Assessments , Nicole Iroz-Elardo (Dissertation)

The Objective vs. the Perceived Environment: What Matters for Active Travel , Liang Ma (Dissertation)

Implications of Local and Regional Food Systems: Toward a New Food Economy in Portland, Oregon , Michael Mercer Mertens (Dissertation)

Spirituality and Religion in Women's Leadership for Sustainable Development in Crisis Conditions: The Case of Burma , Phyusin Myo Kyaw Myint (Dissertation)

Street Level Food Networks: Understanding Ethnic Food Cart Supply Chains in Eastern Portland, OR , Alexander G. Novie (Thesis)

Theses/Dissertations from 2013 2013

Diffusion of Energy Efficient Technology in Commercial Buildings: An Analysis of the Commercial Building Partnerships Program , Chrissi Argyro Antonopoulos (Thesis)

Faulty Measurements and Shaky Tools: An Exploration into Hazus and the Seismic Vulnerabilities of Portland, OR , Brittany Ann Brannon (Thesis)

Sustainable, Affordable Housing for Older Adults: A Case Study of Factors that Affect Development in Portland, Oregon , Alan Kenneth DeLaTorre (Dissertation)

The Historical, Political, Social, and Individual Factors That Have Influenced the Development of Aging and Disability Resource Centers and Options Counseling , Sheryl DeJoy Elliott (Thesis)

Neighborhood Identity and Sustainability: A Comparison Study of Two Neighborhoods in Portland, Oregon , Zachary Lawrence Hathaway (Thesis)

Neighborhood Commercial Corridor Change: Portland, Oregon 1990-2010 , Kelly Ann Howsley-Glover (Dissertation)

Public Space and Urban Life: A Spatial Ethnography of a Portland Plaza , Katrina Leigh Johnston (Thesis)

Green Mind Gray Yard: Micro Scale Assessment of Ecosystem Services , Erin Jolene Kirkpatrick (Thesis)

The Impacts of Urban Renewal: The Residents' Experiences in Qianmen, Beijing, China , Yongxia Kou (Dissertation)

The Dynamics of Creating Strong Democracy in Portland, Oregon : 1974 to 2013 , Paul Roland Leistner (Dissertation)

Neighboring in Strip City: A Situational Analysis of Strip Clubs, Land Use Conflict, and Occupational Health in Portland, Oregon , Moriah McSharry McGrath (Dissertation)

Bicycle Traffic Count Factoring: An Examination of National, State and Locally Derived Daily Extrapolation Factors , Josh Frank Roll (Thesis)

Forming a New Art in the Pacific Northwest: Studio Glass in the Puget Sound Region, 1970-2003 , Marianne Ryder (Dissertation)

Peak of the Day or the Daily Grind: Commuting and Subjective Well-Being , Oliver Blair Smith (Dissertation)

The Metropolitan Dimensions of United States Immigration Policy: A Theoretical and Comparative Analysis , Nicole G. Toussaint (Dissertation)

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Environmental Science & Public Policy

  • Thesis Timeline

Writing a Senior thesis in ESPP is a major undertaking that will require careful planning and sustained effort over many months.  The earlier you get started on each step of the process, the more time you will have to engage deeply and meaningfully with your research topic. 

The table below summarizes our suggested timeline for the planning, research, writing and presentation phases of your thesis: 

thesis in environmental planning

Preliminary pitch:  

In February of your Junior Year, you will be asked to pitch your proposed thesis topic to a group of ESPP faculty and students. The pitch will involve a five-minute presentation, to be followed by questions and discussion.  Your presentation should include three slides: 

  • Introduction: background on the main question and idea that you are interested in pursuing. 
  • Methods: a prospective roadmap of how you might pursue this line of research.  
  • Results: describe the best-possible outcomes that you can realistically envision as resulting from this work. You are not going to be held to this standard, but it is useful to choose a project that has some potential of yielding novel and important results. 

Thesis advising contract:  

You should complete a  thesis advising contract  with your advisor and submit it to the ESPP Office ( [email protected] ) by May 1st of your Junior Year. 

  • Concentration Requirements
  • Declaring ESPP as your Concentration
  • Finding a Thesis Advisor
  • Funding Opportunities
  • Past ESPP Theses
  • ESPP Secondary Field
  • Energy & Environment Secondary Field

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Environmental Planning & Design Degree

Jump to section on page.

  • Why Environmental Planning & Design?
  • Job Prospects with a Degree in Environmental Planning
  • Common Divisions / Specialties
  • Degree Overviews and Programs
  • Careers after Graduation

Education Costs

Importance of accreditation.

  • Search For Schools

Why an Environmental Planning and Design Degree?

The main goal of a program in Environmental Planning and Design is to merge environmental concerns with human desires and needs.

Blending efficiency with social desires as well as practicality and environmental feasibility is a true science. There may be different approaches to doing this, and different interpretations of what this means.

  • Is the design to maximize efficiency for utilities, or is it to protect native wildlife?
  • Is historic preservation the goal, or rehabilitation of native ecosystems?

The nuances involved in finding a balance between nature and the needs of mankind are multitudinous. Often economic demands may win out, but one must remember that those economic demands may change over time as well. What this generation considers a nuisance or unsightly may be the next generation's future; for example, a highly polluted lake may be turned into a sight-seeing development area with well-planned restoration efforts.

Environmental Planning and Landscape Architecture

Unlike other Environmental Science programs , Environmental Planning and Design is often housed either in, or in conjunction with, a school of architecture. Due to the nature of the profession, there are established routes to licensure in most schools. There is a good deal of variability among the schools highlighted, researching individual professors may factor into a student's selected university as well. When choosing this major, students may believe they are going into a program with one goal and come out with another after learning some of the fundamentals.

Typical coursework should include:

  • Basics of design
  • Landscape planning
  • Rural and urban development

Fundamental environmental classes should cover basics of ecology and hydrologic systems and water movement. Specialty classes may be in anthropologic areas, sociology, interior design, historic design, preservation, restoration, and land management, to name a few. International programs may be available.

Job Prospects with a Degree in Environmental Planning and Design

Career options upon graduation are plentiful. You could go into city or municipality planning, restoration and rehabilitation work, international development work with a group such as the Peace Corps, landscape architecture, historic preservation, interior design, just to name a few. You could work for The National Park Service, US Forestry Service, Department of Commerce, the Environmental Protection Agency, and many others. Many architects, designers, and environmental consultants also work for themselves, setting their own schedules and accepting jobs in their specific field of expertise.

With this type of major it is important to look at where you think you want to be working after your schooling is complete. Schools highlighted in this article range from the arid conditions of New Mexico to the snowy streets of Boston. These universities may be in urban environments or in more rural college communities. Though the program curricula may be dually global and local, in theory, fieldwork and inspiration will draw from the culture around the school. Some programs may encourage international studies, while others have well established local internships and working opportunity histories. It may be of great benefit to plan to earn an undergraduate degree in one setting and a graduate degree (or 2!) in another in order to draw from the variety and expertise available around the country.

Common Divisions/Specialties within Environmental Planning and Design

  • Environmental Ethics
  • Historic Preservation
  • Landscape Design
  • Urban Design
  • Interior Design

Degree Overviews & Programs

Bachelor of environmental planning & design programs.

As mentioned above, this undergraduate degree may or may not be on the fast track to architecture licensing. Be sure you know the requirements of your state and the accreditation of the school. If you are simply interested in the field but not sure you want to be an architect, you may want to minor or take classes in this major. Many architecture classes are high in credit number due to their intense nature, and not doing well in one can really affect your GPA.


Most schools require a letter of intent, SAT scores, letters of recommendation, a small application fee, and high school transcripts.

Along with taking 30-60 credits within the Environmental Design and Planning purview, students need to complete core undergraduate college courses as well. Most programs have well planned methods for allowing a student to graduate with a reasonable workload in 4 years, but some advanced B.S. degrees may take 5 years to complete with all the intensive architecture work.

You could go into regional or community planning with this degree as a junior position, or perhaps as a planner in smaller communities. If your concentration was in something like interior design, you may decide this was enough schooling for you and open your own business or train under someone. You could begin work in any number of the listed fields but in order to specialize or become licensed, you would need more schooling.

Bachelor's School Spotlight Auburn University Auburn University Environmental Design program embraces the comingling of nature and construction through sustainable systems. The School of Architecture, Planning and Landscape Architecture offers flexibility in their degree program so that students may get what they desire from their experience in school by choosing multiple minors in the degree. Students already planning to pursue higher level degrees afterwards may benefit from an accelerated program into the graduate school. They also offer a 15 credit Environmental Design minor to students in other areas of the school, and a post- Baccalaureate degree for students wanting to enter a professional Master's program without a degree in Design. They believe in looking at both local and global design issues. University of New Mexico University of New Mexico offers a Bachelor's of Arts in Environmental Planning and Design (BAEPD) through the School of Architecture and Planning. Courses which may be required include subjects such as Watershed Planning, Urban Design Theory, Indigenous Planning, Planning on Native American Lands, and Community Economics for Planners. Students in other disciplines may minor in Environmental Planning and Design as well. Graduates of the program may be looking for careers locally with the National Park Service, environmental advocacy groups, the Department of Transportation, etc.

Master of Environmental Planning & Design Programs

Many Environmental Design and Planning students have chosen to become architects upon graduation. A Master's degree is generally the minimum college degree necessary to do this. Due to the specialties involved in this degree, individual faculty may go a long way in shaping a particular degree, so it is good to become familiar with the faculty at your chosen school. Your advisor could strongly shape your future.

Most schools require a letter of intent, GRE scores, letters of recommendation, a small application fee, and high school transcripts. If a student had another major outside of design, they may be required to complete some core undergraduate courses before full acceptance.

Generally Master's Degrees in Environmental Planning and Design are a combination of class work and practical work. Core courses will be broad based and taught by a variety of faculty, while specialty courses may be taught by the student's own advisor or other members of the department with similar interests. Practical work will be in the design room, in the field, and as the school sees fit.

For many in the fields of architecture and planning this is the penultimate degree. With this they can go on to an apprenticeship to earn their own license. Government employees going back to school may be seeking advancement or the ability to supervise larger projects by earning a Master's Degree.

Master's School Spotlight Harvard University Harvard University Master of Urban Planning (MUP), Environmental Planning is a concentration in the Urban Planning and Design Major at the Graduate School of Design. Students work with planning projects which meet the economic, social, ecological, and sustainable criteria that come into play in major design situations. For a quick glance at some of the offerings of the program, you can look at their Facebook page . Students are able to take classes at the Harvard Kennedy School, the Law School, and Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). Based on past statistics, graduates can expect to gain employment in their chosen field. University of Georgia University of Georgia - The College of Environmental Design (CED) offers a Master's Degree in Environmental Planning and Design (MEPD). It is a studio based program with using ecological and environmental principles in planning. A number of local organizations involved in land management and gifting, low-income housing, and historic preservation work with the program for students to gain real-world experience while in school. Faculty have experience worldwide in places ranging from Venezuela to Dubai. Coursework in geography, anthropology, sociology, ecology, and real estate is available to enhance the required curriculum. Certificates in Environmental Ethics, Historic Preservation, and Historic Landscape Studies are also available.

Ph.D. in Environmental Planning & Design Programs

PhDs may be for those who wish to enhance their realm of expertise or change their working concentration. They may have earned a Master's degree in another subject, such as Ecology, and want to take a practical approach to applying it.

Most PhD programs require a Master's Degree before entrance . They may also require the usual items for an application; three letters of recommendation, small fee to apply, GREs, transcripts, and a well written letter of intent. Some may require a faculty member to agree to be your advisor before entrance as well.

Due to the nature of graduate degrees, most of the coursework would have been completed while earning a Master's degree, but each school has core requirements it expects it's own students to complete. Hence, much of a PhD program is practical work. Schools may have well established partnerships in the community or worldwide which make returning to school very attractive. A thesis or dissertative work is generally required, as well as testing by department members.

PhDs in Environmental Planning and Design have the ability to be supervisors, or leaders in their firms. They may go on to teach in university settings, or gain promotions within their own agencies. They may be even more competitive as independent contractors.

Ph.D. School Spotlight Clemson University Clemson University Offers a PhD degree in Planning, Design, and the Built Environment. It is designed to take 3 years to complete, once you have a Master's Degree. In order to graduate equipped to handle large and small scale issues of human population development, the PhD program draws from a variety of disciplines; architecture, landscape architecture, city and regional planning, real estate development and construction science. There are four main areas of concentration, including Build Environment and Health, Restoration, Sustainability, and Land Ecology, Regional/Community Design and Development, and lastly, Technology, Materials, and Construction Processes. Graduate Assistantships may be available. The application process is fairly standard to PhD programs, and more information can be found on their page. Kansas State University Kansas State A PhD in Environmental Design and Planning from Kansas State offers four different concentrations; Design, Planning, Sustainability, or Place Making. Students in all concentrations have a few first year classes which are the same. Faculty from the Department of Architecture, Landscape Architecture, Interior Architecture and Product Design, and Regional and Community Planning bring their skill sets into play in offering this degree. Along with the traditional entrance requirements, students must have a faculty member willing to serve as their advisor before admittance to the PhD program. Sixty credits beyond a Master's Degree are required for graduation, with a minimum of 30 of those being in dissertation research.

Online Degree in Environmental Planning & Design

The best solution for some students may be to pursue additional education from their own homes through online education. Be aware that some states have specific requirements for completing online education. It will be of benefit to familiarize yourself with the degree program to make sure it meets your own requirements for improved knowledge and possibly job advancement.

Online schools generally have the same requirements as other schools; a small application fee, transcripts, GREs, a letter of intent, and sometimes certain GPAs.

Some schools may require a couple of classes in person but most of the work will be completed online. A few schools are much further ahead of other schools in online degree program development, so it helps to try to research the history of the school, the graduation rates, and job successes afterwards.

Environmental Planning & Design Online Degree Spotlight Johns Hopkins University Though not all aspects of Environmental Planning and Design degrees are available online, Johns Hopkins offers a Master's of Science in Environmental Planning and Management, as well as a graduate certificate, and a post-master's certificate. Students have a variety of online classes in Environmental subjects to choose to take, and the ability to earn a dual degree in Management.

Your Career after Graduation in Environmental Design and Planning

As with other degrees, your level of responsibility and specialization in a career after graduation may be dependent on the degree you earn. Undergraduate degrees can lead to careers as local and federal environmental planners through work with municipalities, the Environmental Protection Agency, the National Park Service, or the Peace Corps. Graduate degrees could be on the track to obtaining independent licensing or advanced work in Environmental Planning. You may choose to be an environmental consultant or to open your own landscaping company.

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Urban and Regional Planners earn a median salary of approximately $75,950/yr, Landscape Architects approximately $70,630/yr, Interior Designers approximately $57,060/yr, and Architects approximately $82,230/yr. Also according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Environmental Planners are mainly employed by government agencies.

Whatever your chosen profession is, you can be sure a degree in Environmental Design and Planning will be well utilized. Due to the nature of the program, and its broad reaching applications, it can only serve to enhance a student's experience in understanding Environmental issues and their real-world applications. As communities continue to develop, they will need employees with great educations in Environmental Design and Planning.

Read more about the various environmental planning and design careers available.

2020 US Bureau of Labor Statistics salary figures and job growth projections for Urban and Regional Planners, Landscape Architects, Interior Designers, and Architects reflect national data not school-specific information. Conditions in your area may vary. Data accessed September 2021.

School costs can vary by state and region, and residency. For example, Kansas State University ranges from approximately $7,000 per year for state residents to $21,000 per year for out of state residents. Students in Architecture classes often pay more than students in other departments due to the special software and equipment required. Scholarships may be available for all degree programs, and research assistantships may be available in upper level programs. In general, Bachelor's will take 4-5 years, Master's will take 2-3, and PhDs will take 2-3. Be sure to look closely at the costs of your chosen school. It may be worth establishing residency before enrolling in order to lower your costs.

Because many of these degrees are associated with schools of architecture, accreditation and future licensing may be of concern. Undergraduate degrees that can be completed in four years (Bachelor's of Arts) or less generally are not on track for professional licensing. However, many Master's programs accept undergraduate degrees in an alternate subject and then offer a licensing degree program. Transferring into many of these programs is possible, but due to the specific nature of the coursework, may take extra time to graduate than a student that had begun at that school.

Becoming a licensed independent architect generally requires 8-10 years; 5-7 of school, and 3 years of professional internship. State and regional license requirements vary, so it is imperative to make sure you have chosen an established program if that is your desire. You may choose to attend a school with a program in Environmental Planning and Design and simply take advantage of the courses available or earn a minor or certificate if you do not have time to earn the full degree.

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Exploring recent trends in integrating urban planning and ecology

  • Published: 18 June 2023

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thesis in environmental planning

  • Garima Toor   ORCID: 1 ,
  • Neha Goyal Tater   ORCID: 1 &
  • Tarush Chandra   ORCID: 1  

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Urbanization has rapidly transformed the global landscape, and its impact on ecology and biodiversity has a critical concern for sustainable development. Integrating urban planning and ecology can help to address these impacts by promoting sustainable urban development and protecting the ecosystem. In this research, a systematic literature review is conducted to explore the integration of urban planning and ecology. The research identified key terms and their associated networks between ecosystems and urban growth. This paper aims to explore the connection between urbanization and ecology through a bibliometric and scientometric review of research trends. Bibliometric and scientometric analyses are conducted to identify the key research areas, influential keywords, and research trends. The results revealed that the research on urbanization and protected areas has increased exponentially since the 2000s, with a focus on identifying the impacts of urbanization on ecology. The paper highlighted the need for more research in developing countries to address the unique challenges of urbanization in and around protected areas. The research also identified the need for interdisciplinary research to develop sustainable urbanization strategies that account for ecological restoration and conservation. The findings of this research provide insights to policymakers and urban planners in growing cities to promote balanced economic development while protecting biodiversity.

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Alerts in effect, tomales point area plan environmental assessment public review and comment period.

that will update management of the area of Point Reyes National Seashore. The TPAP will replace the and revise the (GMP) for Tomales Point. The 2,900 acre planning area includes all lands north of and including the tule elk enclosure fence. More than 85% of the planning area is within the . This plan is separate from the recent , which addresses all NPS lands leased for ranching and the management of on those lands.

The TPAP will update guidance for this area with a focus on preservation of park resources, type and intensity of allowed development, guidance for visitor use and capacities, in addition to the management of tule elk at Tomales Point. The NPS is collaborating with to incorporate Tribal views and traditional ecological knowledge into the management of this area. The NPS preferred alternative includes removal of the tule elk fence and all temporary water systems installed during the most recent drought, potential opportunities to improve recreational uses and visitor experience at the historic , approaches to preserve and maintain of the Philip Burton Wilderness in the planning area, and methods to better protect natural and cultural resources.

Public and stakeholder engagement have been important to the development and refinement of this plan and the preferred alternative.

The NPS hosted a virtual public meeting on Wednesday, May 22, 2024, at 5 pm Pacific Time. See below for more details.

The preferred method for commenting was online through the NPS Planning, Environment and Public Comment website .

Comments could also be submitted by mail or hand delivery to:

Tomales Point Area Plan
c/o Superintendent
Point Reyes National Seashore
1 Bear Valley Road
Point Reyes Station, CA 94956

Please note that comments were not accepted by fax, email, USB drive, or any other way other than those specified above. Bulk comments submitted on behalf of others in any form were not accepted.

The NPS hosted two other public comment periods with and . Public comment analysis reports and the text of all public comments are available for review.

A final decision on the is expected in the summer 2024.

A virtual public meeting for the Point Reyes National Seashore Tomales Point Area Plan and Environmental Assessment took place on Wednesday, May 22, 2024, at 5 pm Pacific Time. Attendees were invited to join by computer or by phone.

(7,192 KB PDF).


(3,959 KB PDF)

, , and . , which you can find within your confirmation email. Then press the # key. followed by the # key. , phone-only participants will receive an individualized Participant ID, so just press the # key. followed by the # key. -->

Last updated: June 6, 2024

Park footer

Contact info, mailing address:.

1 Bear Valley Road Point Reyes Station, CA 94956

415-464-5100 This number will initially be answered by an automated attendant, from which one can opt to access a name directory, listen to recorded information about the park (e.g., directions to the park; visitor center hours of operation; fire danger information; wildlife updates; ranger-led programs; seasonal events; etc.), or speak with a ranger. Please note that if you are calling between 4:30 pm and 10 am, park staff may not be available to answer your call.

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Research on power grid overall planning based on branch bound algorithm

  • Yunling, Sun

As an important infrastructure of modern society, the power system is crucial to the reliability and efficiency of energy supply. The overall planning of power network is one of the key links to ensure the long-term sustainable operation of power system. The purpose of this thesis is to study a branch-bound algorithm based grid planning method to optimize the performance and reliability of power systems. First, we conduct a comprehensive survey and analysis of the current state of the power system, including key parameters such as power distribution, load demand, transmission lines and substations. Then, we propose an overall grid planning model based on branch-bound algorithm, which takes into account a variety of constraints, such as power system scalability, environmental impact and economic costs. Branch-bound algorithms are applied to power grid planning problems to efficiently search for optimal decision paths. The algorithm achieves efficient solution by continuously dividing the problem space and evaluating the upper and lower bounds of each subproblem. The effectiveness of the proposed method is verified by numerical experiments and simulations.


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