Elliott Sclar, Director

Elliott Sclar is the director of CSUD and Professor of Urban Planning at Columbia University’s Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation. He is a member of the senior faculty of the Earth Institute at Columbia University.

A professional economist, Professor Sclar has written extensively about the strengths and limitations of markets as mechanisms for effective public policy implementation. Sclar’s book You Don’t Always Get What You Pay For: The Economics of Privatization (2000), a critique of overreliance on market mechanisms, has won two major academic prizes: the Louis Brownlow Award for the Best Book of 2000 from the National Academy of Public Administration and the 2001 Charles Levine Prize from the International Political Science Association for a major contribution to public policy literature. An earlier book, Access for All: Transportation and Urban Growth, co-authored with K.H. Schaeffer is considered seminal in transforming the discussion of urban transport from a discussion about mobility to one about access.

Sclar is an international expert on urban development. He was co-coordinator of the Taskforce on Improving the Lives of Slum Dwellers, one of the ten taskforces set up by the UN Millennium Project to help guide the implementation of the United Nation’s Millennium Development Goals. The Taskforce Report, A Home in the City (2005, Earthscan), of which he was one of the three lead authors, is now a standard reference on the challenge of transforming the informal urban settlements of the rapidly urbanizing world into healthy and vibrant homes. In November 2007 he received the Humanitarian of the Year Award from the International Society for Urban Health in recognition of his taskforce work. Dr. Sclar was a member of the Advisory Board of the Global Research Network on Human Settlements (HS-NET), UN-HABITAT and of the World Economic Forum’s Global Agenda Council on Urban Management.

In recent years Sclar has been a leading figure in a scholarly movement to reconnect the work of population health experts and urban planners in creating healthier cities. One of the main challenges he sees is the need to begin to develop more precise measurements of built environment impacts on population health.

Sclar is presently drafting the chapter on the economics of sustainable urban transport for UN-Habitat’s 2013 Global Report on Human Settlements which is dedicated to the challenge of sustainable urban transport. He is one of the three co-authors of the forthcoming World Bank study Making Connections: Putting Social Policy at the Heart of Infrastructure Development.


Jacqueline Klopp, Associate Research Scholar

Prior to joining CSUD Jacqueline Klopp was an Assistant Professor of International and Public Affairs at the School of International and Public Affairs (SIPA), Columbia University where she taught the politics of development. She holds a BA from Harvard University where she received a Michael Rockefeller grant to live and work in Western Kenya for two years. This sparked her fascination and love for Kenya and she subsequently finished a PhD in Political Science from McGIll University focusing on land, violence and corruption in multiparty Kenya. Her research continues to focus on the intersection of development, democratization, governance, violence and corruption in Kenya and the Great Lakes region. Klopp is the author of articles in Africa Today, African Studies Review, African Studies, Canadian Journal of African Studies, Comparative Politics, Forced Migration Review, World Policy Journal and the International Peace Academy among others. Her work at CSUD focuses on strategies for improved land-use through deepening local knowledge production through university reform, improved urban governance and policy-networking.


Anna Rubbo, Adjunct Senior Scholar

Anna Rubbo,  B.Arch (Melbourne), D. Arch (Michigan)  joined CSUD in 2012. Prior to this she was Associate Professor in the Faculty of Architecture, Design and Planning at the University of Sydney.  A member of the UN Millennium Project Task Force on Improving the Lives of Slum Dwellers (2002-04) she went on to lead the Global Studio, an action research project to assist urban professionals to work effectively with the urban poor. Working with academic partners, local government and NGOs, since 2005 the program has attracted over 600 students, academics and professionals from 66 universities, over 30 countries and 10 disciplines to its conferences and programs in Istanbul (2005), Vancouver (2006), Johannesburg (2007-09), and Bhopal (2012).


Global Studio was included in the 2009 International Architecture Biennale in Rotterdam, and the 2011 Cooper Hewitt exhibition ‘Design with the other 90%’ at the UN. With CSUD and Global Studio colleagues she developed the traveling exhibition ‘People Building Better Cities: Participation and Inclusive Urbanization’ (link to , available in six languages . Shown in 16 cities and 9 countries since February 2013, PBBC has encouraged dialogue and debate on inclusive urbanization in communities, universities, professional organizations and NGOs. In 2014 she partnered with UIA Durban on ‘ Addressing Poverty and Informality through Design Education and Practice, to which she invited township residents to dialogue with professionals. Global Studio is an associate partner in UN Habitat’s World Urban Campaign and participated at the 2014 World Urban Forum in Medellin, Colombia, on Equity in Urban Development.

A co-founder and editor (1996-2010) of the journal Architectural Theory Review, Rubbo has published widely on US architect Marion Mahony Griffin, on design education and development challenges, women and development in Colombia, and housing . She is co-author of Esclavitud y Libertad en el Valle del Rio Cauca (UniAndes 2011).

Recognition includes the 2014 UIA Vassilis Sgoutas Prize mention for humanitarian work in education, the Australian national Neville Quarry Education Award (2011), the 2009 Skandalaris Award for Entrepreneurship in Design at the University of Washington and the RAIA Marion Mahony Griffin award (2006). She was made a Life Fellow of the AIA in 2010.