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University of Chicago launches urban innovation institute

(Rudy Balasko/

The University of Chicago has announced plans for a new institute dedicated to urban scholarship and research. The Mansueto Institute for Urban Innovation aspires to educate the next generation of urban scholars and practitioners, the university said in its March announcement.

Alumni Joe and Rika Mansueto have pledged $35 million to create the institute, dedicated to tackling urban challenges around the world. Joe Mansueto is the billionaire founder and CEO of Morningstar, an investment research firm. The academic center plans to develop analytic tools to synthesize urban data and create an online library devoted to this niche. Health care, violence, housing and the well-being of urban youth are among the issues to be studied.

The institute would take a multidisciplinary approach to urban studies, complementing the university’s existing work in this field. It also would forge collaborations with a range of partners to apply academic concepts to real-world problems. “We want to support the application of academic findings into public policy to have an enduring impact for people around the globe,” Joe Mansueto said, according to the announcement. 

University of Chicago

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