The City University Urban Consortium was created by and based at the Newman Institute, under the direction of Ellen Posner. The Consortium brought together scholars in a wide range of disciplines throughout the City University of New York, as well as their colleagues from other universities, for continuing interdisciplinary dialogue about urban issues--which resulted in public programs and publications sponsored by the Newman Institute.
Consortium members were drawn from disciplines including economics, architecture, urban design, planning, transportation/urban systems, anthropology, sociology, government, logistics and criminal justice. They worked together to consider urban issues in ways that were particularly complex and revealing--acknowledging that the issues involved do cross disciplines.
The core group worked with colleagues from Yale, Harvard, Princeton, Rutgers, the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, the University of Chicago and UCLA, as well as with planners from Paris, London, Beijing and Shanghai.
Notable public programs included: “Between Expedience and Deliberation: Planning in New York after 9/11” and “The Future of New York: An International Perspective--both of which were full-day symposia that resulted in issues of the Institute’s journal, Properties. The Consortium also collaborated to create seminars addressing, for example, the massive new physical interventions of bollards and concrete barriers on New York City streets (“Designing for Security”) and the controversy involved in zoning regulations that would eliminate or preserve manufacturing uses in the city (“Nuts & Bolts: Manufacturing in New York City’s Future”). In addition, in conjunction with the Institute for Urban Design, there were breakfast meetings including "Campus and Community", "Commercial Buildings and Business Districts: New 21st Century Initiatives", and "New York City Rental Housing".
Consortium members in environmental psychology and anthropology, and urban affairs and planning, provided academic papers to supplement the Newman Institute’s affordable housing study.
An ancillary goal of the Consortium was audience development so that real estate developers, officials of government agencies, architects and scholars would be brought together to consider the same issues.