Programs > Brochure
FLP: Brazil: Brazilian Urbanism: Past, Present and Future
Ouro Preto, Brazil; Rio de Janeiro, Brazil (Outgoing Program)
Winter Round 1,
Winter Round 2
|Dates / Deadlines:|
|Program Type:||FLP (Faculty-Led Program)||Class Eligibility:||Graduate, Sophomore, Junior, Senior|
|Language of Instruction:||English||Language Requirement:||None|
|Housing Options:||Hotels||GPA Requirement:||2.8|
Brazil is a rapidly developing nation with more than 200 million people. This course will introduce students to a variety of topics related to urbanism in Brazil. We will explore Ouro Preto, a UNESCO World Heritage Center filled with colonial-era buildings and plazas, which is struggling to balance tourism management and historic preservation objectives. Next, we will visit Rio de Janeiro, recent host of the 2016 Summer Olympic Games. There are many lessons to be learned from the city's experience in planning for mass visitation.
Students will start their exploration of Brazilian urbanism in the city of Ouro Preto, first settled by Portuguese colonists in the 1600s who exploited the region's gold reserves. Students will explore colonial-era architecture, meet with federal university architects and urban planners, and take part in a service learning project in Veloso, a favela north of the city. Next, students will travel to Rio de Janeiro where they will meet with the city's planners to learn about urban issues facing this megacity. Topics will include planning for the 2016 Olympic games, adaptive reuse of Olympics venues, infrastructure improvements to support mass tourism, and explorations of Rio's favelas, botanical gardens, and the city's huge tropical forest park.
- Working alongside Brazilian faculty & students on a service learning project to improve environmental conditions in Veloso, a favela in Ouro Preto.
- Meetings with local city planners to discuss urban transportation networks and land use management.
- Seeing where the 2016 Olympics had occurred and learning what happens after the Olympics.
- In Rio, visits to a botanical garden, one of the world's largest urban forest parks, and Christ the Redeemer Statue.
URBP 280 Planning Research Topics (3 units)
This course will introduce students to a variety of topics related to urbanism in Brazil. Prior to visiting Brazil, students will complete two class meetings to learn about Brazilian culture and history, the context for urban planning in Ouro Preto and Rio de Janeiro, cultural norms in Brazil, and related topics. In January 2018 students will start their exploration of Brazilian urbanism in the city of Ouro Preto, first settled by Portuguese colonists in the 1600s who exploited the region's gold reserves. Students will explore colonial-era architecture, meet with federal university architects and urban planners, and take part in a service learning project in Veloso, a favela north of the city. Next, students will travel to Rio de Janeiro where they will meet with the city's planners to learn about urban issues facing this megacity. Topics will include planning for the 2016 Olympic games, adaptive reuse of Olympics venues, infrastructure improvements to support mass tourism, and explorations of Rio's favelas, botanical gardens, and the huge city forest park.
The course will be designed so that students develop a nuanced understanding of the urban planning and design challenges Ouro Preto faces, as well as the successes and failures of related policies that have been implemented in recent years in Rio de Janeiro. The class will reflect on how lessons learned in these cities can be applied in other large cities around the world, including those in the United States.
Course material will center on striking a balance between the preservation of vital historical/cultural resources and intensive tourism growth and visitation. Students will investigate this by focusing on one or two prominent public plazas in Ouro Preto, as well as the Veloso favela. In addition to this observational analysis, students will be guided to hold informal conversations and semi-structured interviews with local residents and business owners to better understand their concerns and aspirations for their communities. This will help the students develop skills in the collection, analysis and presentation of qualitative data.
Students will compile their final observations in (1) a journal that is kept during the in-country trips, (2) written reflections in a formal report, and (3) a final presentation the class at our final class meeting in late January 2018.
Upon successful completion of the course, students will be able to:
- Describe key aspects of urban planning problems and solutions in Brazil.
- Compare urban planning approaches in Brazil to those used in the United States.
- Compare aspects of Brazilian culture and communication styles to those used in the United States
- Synthesize findings from independent research and readings, in-country experiences, and lecture topics into a journal, formal written report, and final presentation that encapsulates the student's reflections on urbanism in Brazil.
Program Leader: Richard Kos
Rick Kos has been teaching at San Jose State University since 2008 and is a faculty member in the Masters of Urban & Regional Planning program. His undergraduate education is in environmental planning and design (Rutgers) and his graduate studies focused on alternatives to low-density suburban sprawl (Univ. of North Carolina at Chapel Hill). At SJSU Rick teaches a number of service-learning courses in Geographic Information Systems, community engagement, and neighborhood assets assessment.
We live on an urban planet – over half of the word's population now lives in cities, and this is expected to increase to 75 percent by the year 2050. Rick feels that it is vital for 21st-century global citizens to develop a deeper understanding of world cities since they will be unrivaled centers of creativity, innovation, and social advancement. Rick is a true "city guy" – he loves the dynamism, energy, and complexity of urban systems and devotes his time to learning about urban history, transportation systems, and urban growth management policies. He is very excited to explore Ouro Preto and Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, with a group of SJSU students who share his interest in cities. In his spare time, Rick enjoys hiking the Bay Area's hills, cooking intricate breakfasts, and nature photography.
It is important to note that each program's total cost will vary depending on the location and the package it offers.
$750 SJSU Special Session Tuition ($250 per unit)
$200 Administration Fee
$1,605 Program fees, lodging, class materials and class related tours approximately*
$2,555 Total Program Cost
* Airfare is not included.