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Welcome to Northeastern University’s School of Public Policy and Urban Affairs (SPPUA), a community committed to advancing social justice through interdisciplinary policy analysis and community engagement.

Message from the Director

During these disruptive times, we are continuously adapting our approach to prepare our students to address complex problems, serve communities and build a more just, sustainable and resilience world. 

Our faculty, staff and students are engaging at local, state, national, and international levels on the interconnected issues of housing and transportation, food and energy, education and workforce training, as well as community and economic development, racial justice, social services, environmental justice, and sustainability.

In the midst of a global pandemic, the world as we know it is in flux and our society’s vulnerabilities are being revealed. In addition to health concerns, the precarious livelihoods of so many in our society are forcing us to reconsider what has been prioritized in public policy and how investments for the public good have been made.

Here at SPPUA, we anticipate a very different future that we are involved in shaping. Building on our long-standing commitment to advancing the public good and public health, training leaders in public service and public policy, and strengthening economic and racial justice, our community is adapting and innovating to enhance our future impact. As massive new public investments are being made, our role in shaping a more just, sustainable and equitable future is more important than ever.

By educating students in both theory and practice, we prepare leaders to become effective contributors to social, economic, and environmental change, in careers spanning the public, private, and nonprofit sectors, as well as academic research.

Our degree, certificate and international exchange programs, and cutting-edge research centers are advancing the intellectual and institutional infrastructure required to reprioritize and restructure systems to advance social, economic, racial and environmental justice.

I welcome you to visit with us, work with us, learn with us, and change the world with us.

Jennie C. Stephens
PhD, California Institute of Technology