All the challenges of contemporary societies intersect in the city: growing inequality, economic development, conflict, cultural hybridisation, relations between government and the governed, democracy and collective choices, accumulation of data and technologies, pollution, police, mobility, financialisation, etc.
But the very places that concentrate the world's problems also concentrate the solutions. Modes of urban governance change the lives of their inhabitants.
Start with the city, transform the world
These solutions are dispersed, precarious and constantly changing. Understanding and anticipating them calls for actors and professions that do not yet exist. That is the mission of the Sciences Po Urban School – a resolutely political project to educate those who will transform the world through the city, using a structured, professionally-focused, critical and comparative approach.
The urban and regional policy-makers who graduate from the School go on to work in the public, private and non-profit sectors, on both a local and international scale.
New professions to govern, plan and reinvent the city
Reinventing the city does not mean inventing it; cities go back a long way, and so do their challenges. By studying the social sciences, students at the Urban School learn to discern and analyse the complexity of urban issues. By comparing urban models from Europe and throughout the world, they learn to develop and implement solutions.
To achieve a positive impact on "world cities", these future professionals must learn their trade in an international, multicultural environment. The Urban School fosters dialogue between all cultures and approaches, thanks to a diverse educational community that embraces a vast range of countries and professions.
Today's urban practitioners must speak the language of all the city's stakeholders. The School makes extensive use of engagement in the field, through group work on real commissions, to teach students about negotiation, respect for constraints, decision-making and citizens' needs. At the same time, guided by professors and researchers, students learn to reason, to lose their fear of numbers, to understand collective action and to challenge and rethink their methods and attitudes.