University of Oregon

Planning, Public Policy and Management

Areas of Expertise

The Department of Planning, Public Policy and Management (PPPM) is concerned with the ways governments, nonprofit organizations, and other institutions address some of the most important problems facing society today. In particular, the PPPM department is known for the following areas of expertise:

Land Use & the Built Environment
A concentration in land use and the built environment focuses on the interaction between land use and the design of human settlements at the local scale. Teaching students how to think about the intersection of sustainability, quality of life, the relevant policy environment, and individual behavior and decision making are fundamental to the study of land use and the built environment.

Environmental Planning & Policy
A concentration in environmental planning and policy focuses on the intersection of the built and natural environments, issues of environmental quality, open space preservation, and the implementation tools and policies to achieve positive environmental outcomes. A focus in this area can prepare students for a wide range of careers in the public, private and nonprofit sectors.

Social & Health Policy
A concentration in social and health policy prepares students to work on a broad range of issues relating to human welfare, including poverty, health, housing, food security, equality, education, and job training. Recent alumni with concentrations in social and health policy are working as analysts and program staff in government and nonprofits tackling issues of health care reform, higher education quality, and public employment relations, among other topics.

Community Development
Community development is concerned with advancing the ecological, economic, and social health of human settlements – from rural regions and small towns to cities and their neighborhoods to suburbs. Community developers work on a wide variety of issues, and alumni work in public, private, and nonprofit organizations in positions such as: management analysts, technical planners, community organizers, program managers, policy makers, and grants managers.

Nonprofit Management & Philanthropy
Strong growth in assets and activities of the nonprofit sector in recent decades has resulted in sharply expanding career opportunities in the many areas of nonprofit and philanthropic enterprise. These organizations include cultural and arts, education, health and human services, foundations, environmental, international development, and advocacy organizations. Nonprofit enterprise has broadened with developing sources of funding, and the complexities of its management require professional skills specific to the sector.

Sustainable Cities
Sustainable cities includes a range of disciplines exploring the design and governance of cities and urban regions. It may be accomplished through a self-designed concentration or a program such as the Ecological Design Graduate Certificate. Graduates with this concentration have worked in a range of positions, including urban planner and sustainability coordinator.


This page updated August 18, 2014