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Shaping the Future of the Bay Area (CEE 118X, CEE 218X, ESS 118X, ESS 218X, GEOLSCI 118X, GEOLSCI 218X, GEOPHYS 118X, GEOPHYS 218X, PUBLPOL 118X)


The complex urban problems affecting quality of life in the Bay Area, from housing affordability and transportation congestion to economic vitality and social justice, are already perceived by many to be intractable, and will likely be exacerbated by climate change and other emerging environmental and technological forces. Changing urban systems to improve the equity, resilience and sustainability of communities will require new collaborative methods of assessment, goal setting, and problem solving across governments, markets, and communities. It will also require academic institutions to develop new models of co-production of knowledge across research, education, and practice. This XYZ course series is designed to immerse students in co-production for social change. The course sequence covers scientific research and ethical reasoning, skillsets in data-driven and qualitative analysis, and practical experience working with local partners on urban challenges that can empower students to drive responsible systems change in their future careers. The Autumn (X) course is specifically focused on concepts and skills, and completion is a prerequisite for participation in the Winter (Y) and/or Spring (Z) practicum quarters, which engage teams in real-world projects with Bay Area local governments or community groups. X is composed of four modules: (A) participation in two weekly classes which prominently feature experts in research and practice related to urban systems; (B) reading and writing assignments designed to deepen thinking on class topics; (C) fundamental data analysis skills, particularly focused on Excel and ArcGIS, taught in lab sessions through basic exercises; (D) advanced data analysis skills, particularly focused on geocomputation in R, taught through longer and more intensive assignments. X can be taken for 3 units (ABC), 4 units (ACD), or 5 units (ABCD). Open to undergraduate and graduate students in any major. For more information, visit

Course ID: 
212 827
Letter (ABCD/NP)