Summer [IN]STITUTE in Environmental Design


Program Description

[IN]CITY is a comprehensive six week introduction to the study and practice of urban planning through the lens of sustainability. By attending daily lectures and engaging in studio work, participants acquire the skills necessary to inform planning proposals. [IN]CITY assignments are real projects with actual clients who represent a diverse group of stakeholder organizations in the San Francisco Bay Area. These organizations actively aim to influence sustainable planning policy at the local, county and regional levels.

[IN]CITY students develop in-depth recommendations, analyses and proposals for these client projects, which run the gamut of planning practice: housing and design, bike mobility and transportation, public health and environmental justice, community development and gentrification, urban design, climate action and art in public spaces. In doing so, participants have an opportunity to influence planning in the Bay Area by exploring institutional, political, social, economic and environmental policy challenges. 

[IN]CITY is geared towards post-baccalaureate students who are considering graduate study in city and regional planning. No previous planning or design experience is necessary for eligibility.

"[IN]CITY was a fun and challenging experience! I learned valuable skills and information that enhanced my ability to change career paths from green building to community and economic development planning in a surprisingly short amount of time."

Nicole Jesslyn Agbayani, [IN]CITY Alumna


What Does Virtual [IN]CITY Look Like?

Daily Seminar

The daily seminar offers an overview of sustainability issues related to several different areas in sustainable urbanism including community development, housing, land use, transportation, urban design and water. Internationally-renowned faculty from CED’s Department of City and Regional Planning provide engaging lectures and discussions around these topics. 

Planning Studio Instruction

[IN]CITY's Planning Studio is designed to provide practical experience. Past clients include the City of Berkeley, City of Oakland, Kala Institute, and the Metropolitan Transportation Commission, among others. Instructors with many years of experience in sustainability planning teach the studio. The studio products are designed for students to explore key policy challenges (institutional, political, social, economic, environmental, among others) and to develop tangible design and planning strategies.

To develop these strategies, students conduct data analysis related to demographics, land use, and transportation; learn city and street design and drawing techniques; and critically evaluate complex and sometimes contentious real-world policy and planning options. A key aspect of [IN]CITY is the practice of oral presentation skills through ongoing pin-ups, reviews, desk crits and presentations. These skills are crucial for a successful career in planning, where much time is spent communicating with non-technical audiences and working in multi-disciplinary teams.

Summer Institute

[IN]CITY definitely helped me clarify my understanding of what planners do. It also solidifed my interest in the field, because it gave me a preview of the type of people that I will meet in grad school!

2018 [IN]CITY survey respondent


[IN]CITY 2020 Academic Lead

Michael Larice


  • PhD, City & Regional Planning, University of California, Berkeley

  • MArch in Architecture, University of California, Berkeley

  • BA in Design, University of California, Los Angeles


Urban design, comparative urban studies, architecture, urban theory and form, planning theory and history, livability theory and practice, quality of life, urban studies and design methods, research design, housing design and typology, slum housing and upgrading, international development, social sustainability, street and streetcar system design.



Michael Larice is a designer and educator who teaches urban design and urbanism, applied theory, design methods, street and transit design, and progressive housing.  Although he is an architect, city planner, and urban designer, he is primarily an urbanist. He takes a comparative, pluralist, and collaborative approach in teaching, research and practice to help students, professionals, and clients better transform their cities – how they can overcome struggle, how they can sustain themselves, and how they can thrive.

Most of his urban design studios are partnered with clients trying to solve very real public realm, community, and development problems. Among these clients have been the cities of Abu Dhabi, Seattle, Oranjestad, Philadelphia, Vancouver, Park City, and Salt Lake City. This pragmatic design approach helps students build skills, construct competitive portfolios, operationalize theory, write more effectively, and address the challenges they will face in their professional careers. Over his career, Professor Larice has helped educate and place hundreds of forward-thinking planners and urban designers with firms and public agencies across the country.

Professor Larice’s professional and academic work focuses largely on the transformative urban design of livable places – and increasingly on how to manifest socially sustainable places. Previous research looked at dense urban neighborhoods, development approvals, slum upgrading, streetcar impacts on quality of life, urban arterial livability, and, the history and theory of livability thought. He continues working toward the professionalization of the urban design field, the democratization of planning, and the transformation of urban places.

Professor Larice is a son of California, who holds a PhD in City Planning from UC Berkeley, where his dissertation focused on the form and livability of high-density neighborhoods in North America. He has taught at the University of Pennsylvania, the University of British Columbia, the University of Utah, and the University of California, Berkeley. Most recently he directed the Graduate Certificate in Urban Design and the PhD Program in Metropolitan Planning, Policy and Design at the University of Utah. After serving in the US Peace Corps in Swaziland (Eswatini) from 1992-1995 in the Ministry of Housing and Urban Development coordinating the nation’s largest slum upgrading project, he worked as a licensed architect for several years in California. 

In 2009, Professor Larice was awarded the G. Holmes Perkins Award for Distinguished Teaching at the University of Pennsylvania. In 2012, he was named Professor of the Year at the University of Utah’s College of Architecture + Planning.  He and his urban design studios have won a number of competitive design awards and made lasting impacts on local municipalities and the public realm. For several years Professor Larice served as the Urban Design Track Chair for the American Collegiate Schools of Planning annual conference. In September 2019, he and Molly O’Neill Robinson signed a contract to author/edit The Routledge Handbook of Urban Design Practice, forthcoming Fall 2021. In his free time, he is an avid soccer fan.