Kurt Paulsen

Position title: Professor

Email: kpaulsen@wisc.edu

Phone: (608) 262.8990

202 Music Hall


Kurt Paulsen is a professor of urban planning in the Department of Planning and Landscape Architecture at the University of Wisconsin – Madison. His teaching and research focuses on housing, affordable housing finance and policy, land use, and municipal finance. In addition to his published academic research, he has authored two Dane County housing needs assessments, has chaired the City of Middleton Workforce Housing Committee, and does economic impact analysis research for WHEDA (Wisconsin Housing and Economic Development Authority). He is most recently the author of “Falling Behind: Addressing Wisconsin’s workforce housing shortage to strengthen families, communities and our economy,” published by the Wisconsin Realtors Association. Professor Paulsen is a member of the American Institute of Certified Planners (AICP).


Academic Publications:

Paulsen, K. (2017). “The Goldilocks Dilemma of Moderate Income Housing Subsidies: Finding the “Just Right” Amount for the Missing Middle.”  Forthcoming in Citiscape: A Journal of Policy Development and Research

Jin, J. and Paulsen, K. (2017). “Does Accessibility Matter? Understanding the Effect of Job Accessibility on Labor Market Outcomes.” Forthcoming in Urban Studies.

Paulsen, K. (2015). “Great Neighborhoods” for Whom? Comment on Talen et al., “What is a ‘Great Neighborhood’?” Journal of the American Planning Association, forthcoming. DOI: 10.1080/01944363.2015.1077088. View Publication.

Schneider, A., Chang, C., and Paulsen, K. (2015).  The Changing Spatial Form of Cities in Western China.  Landscape and Urban Planning135: 40-61. View Publication.

Paulsen, K. (2014).  Geography, Policy, or Market?  New Evidence on the Measurement and Causes of Sprawl (and Infill) in U.S. Metropolitan Regions. Urban Studies51(12), 2629-2645. View Publication. Data Appendix. 

Paulsen, K. (2014).  The Effects of Land Development on Municipal Finance.  Journal of Planning Literature29(1), 20-40. View Publication.

Paulsen, K. 2013. The Effects of Growth Management on the Spatial Extent of Urban Development, Revisited.  Land Economics, 89(2):193-210. View Publication. 

Paulsen, K. (2012). The Evolution of Suburban Relative Housing-Unit Diversity.  Housing Policy Debate 22(3): 407-433. View Publication.

Paulsen, K. (2012). Yet Even More Evidence on the Spatial Size of Cities: Urban Spatial Expansion in the US, 1980-2000. Regional Science and Urban Economics. 42(4):561-568. View Publication.

Dyckman, C. and Paulsen, K (2012). Not in My Watershed! Will Increased Federal Supervision Really Bring Better Coordination Between Land Use and Water Planning? Journal of Planning Education and Research. 32:91-106. View Publication.

Mandarano, L. and Paulsen, K. (2011). Governance Capacity in Collaborative Watershed Partnerships: Evidence from the Philadelphia Region. Journal of Environmental Planning and Management 54:10, 1293-1313. View Publication.

Schmidt, S. and Paulsen, K. (2009). Is Open-Space Preservation a Form of Exclusionary Zoning? The Evolution of Municipal Open-Space Policies in New Jersey. Urban Affairs Review, 45:1, pp.92-118.  View Publication.

Jacobs, H.M. and Paulsen, K. (2009). Property Rights: The Neglected Theme of 20th-Century American Planning. Journal of the American Planning Association, 75:2, pp. 134-143. View Publication.

Mandarano, L., Featherstone, J. and Paulsen, K. (2008). Institutions for Interstate Water Resources Management. Journal of the American Water Resources Association, 44:1, pp. 136-147.  View Publication.

Paulsen, K., Featherstone, J. and Greene, S. (2007). Conservation Induced Wastewater Flow Reductions Improve Nitrogen Removal Efficiency: Evidence from New York City. Journal of the American Water Resources Association, 43:6, pp. 1570-1582.  View Publication.

Paulsen, K. (2006). Sprawl, Residential Density, and Exclusionary Zoning. Probate and Property (ABA Real Property Section), 20:3 (May/June 2006), pp. 22-27.

Krueckeberg, D. and Paulsen, K. (2002). Evaluating the Experience of Brazilian, South African and Indian Urban Tenure Programmes. Chapter 16 in Holding Their Ground: Secure Land Tenure for the Urban Poor, Durand-Lasserve, A. and Royston, L. eds. London: Earthscan Publication Ltd. pp. 233-244.

Research for Public Agencies:

Paulsen, K. 2015. Housing Needs Assessment: Dane County and Municipalities.  For Dane County Planning and Development Department and Dane County Department of Human Services.  Available here. Public Presentation here.

Paulsen, K. 2012.  Evaluation of CARPC’s Policies on Housing Prices in Dane County. [Commissioned and approved by Capital Area Regional Planning Commission, Madison, WI.]  Link

Paulsen, K. 2011. Evaluation of CARPC’s Land Demand Forecasting Methodology to Determine Urban Service Area Boundaries.  [Commissioned and approved by Capital Area Regional Planning Commission, Madison, WI.]

Paulsen, K. and Wilson, E. 2008. Plan Regionally, Implement Locally: An Evaluation of Multi-Municipal Planning and Implementation in Pennsylvania.  [Commissioned, approved and distributed by 10,000 Friends of Pennsylvania.  Funded in part and submitted to Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development.] Link


463 Evolution of American Planning
The nature and cultural significance of contemporary methods for the systematic formulation of public policies for community, metropolitan, and state development through comprehensive planning. Historic roots, recent trends, and new directions in American planning concepts, institutions, planning effectiveness, professional specialization, including emerging environmental issues.

751 Introduction to Financial Planning
An introduction to the theory and practice of state and local financial planning with emphasis on the functional importance of expenditures; special problems in financing city and metropolitan governments; intergovernmental fiscal relations and the use of various budgetary techniques as integral parts of the planning process.

781 Planning Thought and Practice
An intensive examination of contemporary urban and regional planning thought, including major conceptual dilemmas in professional practice.

844 Housing and Public Policy
An overview of the major federal, state, and local policies affecting housing, including discussions of public, private, and non-profit housing delivery sectors. Includes discussions of residential land development trends, affordable housing production, housing demographics, mortgage markets, housing finance, and fair housing. Course also includes content on housing planning and housing elements in local government comprehensive plans, housing needs assessments, integration of housing and transportation accessibility, and a discussion of exclusionary zoning and restrictive land use controls. Course will include field trips to affordable housing developments and guest speakers from housing agencies.

969 Comprehensive Planning
A comprehensive overview of  the process, methods and techniques involved in preparation of local government plans for the physical and social development of cities and regions. Emphasis is on the tools, techniques, and methods involved in preparing land use plans, including land suitability analysis and public participation.  Includes discussion of economic development, transportation, infrastructure and housing plans, plan implementation, and intergovernmental coordination, as well as plans for protection of open-space, environmental, agricultural and historic resources.

912 Planning Workshop
Study of selected problems in planning to emphasize the interdisciplinary character of planning practice and to give opportunity to apply socioeconomic analysis, physical planning, and implementation techniques.