The economic development area of concentration focuses on building strong and economically resilient communities and organizations. It prepares students for positions with city planning and development departments, regional planning and development agencies, state economic development agencies, neighborhood economic development groups, and other non-profit or public/private economic development organizations.

Students study regional economic growth processes, the changing structure of employment, the relationship between local industrial sectors and national and international economic trends, and strategies for poverty alleviation and economic resilience. Courses also focus on forecasting the economic impact of business location decisions, alternatives for financing development, state and local development strategies and policies, innovative institutional arrangements such as public/private partnerships, and other issues such as plant closings, job training, poverty reduction, tax incentives, and federal small business programs. The following Economic Development courses are usually offered at the University of Iowa:

SPPA Courses

  • Economic Development Policy
  • Growth Management
  • Transportation, Urban Form, and Sustainability
  • Community Development Through Creative Placemaking
  • Strategic Management of Public and Nonprofit Organizations

Business Courses

  • Real Estate Process
  • Real Estate Finance and Investment

Economics Course

  • Industry Analysis

Entrepreneurship Courses

  • Entrepreneurship: Business Consulting
  • Managing the Growth Business