Regional/Urban Planning Education

A few years ago I designed a NetLogo-based unit on Regional Development in collaboration with Prof. Marvin Cohen (retired). The unit focuses on using computer simulations and data to get students to think about what a “good city” is, and what kinds of data we would want to use to substantiate claims about the “goodness” of a city.

My long-term hope with these studies is to combine studying ‘reasoning about social issues’ with ‘thinking with computer models’ and ‘thinking with and about data.

Two different student-designed cities, visualizing income disparities.

Since then I have run the unit in both high school and college classrooms. Below you can find my publications based on the unit.

Publications

  • Hjorth, A. & Krist, S. (2016). Unpacking Social Factors in Mechanistic Reasoning (Or, Why a Wealthy Person is Not Exactly Like a Grey Squirrel). Short paper presented at the International Conference of the Learning Sciences 2016, Singapore.
  • Hjorth, A & Wilensky, U. (2014). Redesigning Your City – A Constructionist Environment for Urban Planning Education. Proceedings of Constructionism 2014, Vienna, Aug 19-23. (Selected as one of the best papers at the conference, and later published in a journal – see below).
  • Hjorth, A., & Wilensky, U. (2014). Redesigning Your City – A Constructionist Environment for Urban Planning Education. Informatics in Education-An International Journal, (Vol13_2), 197-208.
  • Hjorth, A. & Wilensky, U. (2014). Re-grow Your City – a NetLogo curriculum unit on Regional Development. In J. L. Polman, E. A. Kyza, D. K. O’Neill, I. Tabak, W. R. Penuel, A. S. Jurow, K. O’Connor, T. Lee & L. D’Amico (Eds.), Proceedings of “Learning and Becoming in Practice,” the 11th International Conference of the Learning Sciences (ICLS) 2014 (Vol. 3, pp. 1553-1555). Boulder, CO: International Society of the Learning Sciences.