Minjee Kim


I study the relationship between real estate development and urban planning. I got drawn to this research area through my experience as a practicing planner. I worked for the City of Cambridge’s Community Development Department and the Boston Planning and Development Agency in Massachusetts. While working at these agencies I witnessed first-hand the contentious debates around real estate development and growth at the local level. However, most practicing planners were not equipped with knowledge and skillset to steward real estate developments in a way that would complement planning goals. In academia, on the other hand, for-profit real estate development was seen as inherently antithetical to progressive planning and thus, little attention was given to real estate development. In response, my work aims to connect the two worlds. I strive to identify how planners and policymakers can harness the forces of real estate development to further progressive planning values and encourage equitable development outcomes.


Bachelor of Architecture: Yonsei University. 2011. Architectural Design
Masters: Massachusetts Institute of Technology. 2013. Master in Urban Planning
PhD: Massachusetts Institute of Technology. 2019. Urban and Regional Planning

Research Activities

Large-scale developments
Land value capture
Land use and zoning
Real estate development
Equitable development

Selected Publications

Kim, M. (2023). The Case for Mass Upzoning. Housing Policy Debate. https://doi.org/10.1080/10511482.2023.2234890

Kim, M. (2023). Infrastructure Investments and Land Value Capture: Variations and uncertainties at the frontiers of urban expansion. Town Planning Reviewhttps://doi.org/10.3828/tpr.2022.23

Kim, M. (2023). Creating Diverse and Inclusive Communities: Lessons learned from successful master planned communities. ULI Terwilliger Center for Housing, Washington, D.C.

Kim, M. (2022). Taking Stock of What We Know About Large-scale Urban Development Projects: A review of existing theoretical frameworks and case studies. Journal of Planning Literature. https://doi.org/10.1177/08854122221097976

Kim, M., & Chapin, T. (2022). Who benefits from Enterprise Zones? Equity implications gleaned from policy design and implementation regulations. Cities. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cities.2022.103878

Kim, M., & Zhou, T. (2021). Does Restricting the Entry of Formula Businesses Help Mom-and-pop Stores? The Case of American Towns with Unique Community Character. Economic Development Quarterly. https://doi.org/10.1177/08912424211002913

Kim, M. (2021). How do tax-based revitalization policies affect urban property development? Evidence from Bronzeville, Chicago. Urban Studies. https://doi.org/10.1177/0042098021995148

Kim, M. (2020). Negotiation or schedule-based? Examining the strengths and weaknesses of the public benefit exaction strategies of Boston and Seattle. Journal of the American Planning Association. https://doi.org/10.1080/01944363.2019.1691040

Kim, M., Malizia, E., Nelson, M., Wolf-Powers, L., Ganning, J., & Schrock, G. (2020). Real Estate Development and Economic Development Planning Education: Pragmatic Turn or Trojan Horse? Journal of Planning Education and Research. https://doi.org/10.1177/0739456X20963568

Kim, M. (2020). Upzoning and Value Capture: How U.S. local governments use land use regulation power to create and capture value from real estate developments. Land Use Policy. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.landusepol.2020.104624

Kim, M. (2019). “Adventures in the Land of OZ.” Planning Magazine, American Planning Association, June 2019. https://www.planning.org/planning/2019/jun/adventuresinoz/

Minjee Kim

Assistant Professor

BEL 336


Curriculum Vitae