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Spring 2021: Rethinking Human Settlements from a Resilience Perspective after COVID-19: Introduction (TFRG80)

In the context of urbanization and globalization, people and cities are highly connected and dependent from each other socially, spatially and economically. Poorly managed human settlements with high population density, inadequate housing conditions, overcrowded modes of public transport and lack of open urban space, among other factors, have been related to the vulnerability of cities to coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), which causes coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).

The global COVID-19 pandemic has affected the most vulnerable such as the elderly, the sick, migrants and the urban poor. Most humans spend more than 90% of their daily lives in different types of built environment and many even commuting between cities, whereas mandatory stay-at-home regulations have shifted the importance towards the own dwelling space, the neighbourhood and the virtual space.

People’s appropriation and adaptation of housing space for self-care, work and study have been among coping responses during the pandemic. The latter has made explicit that we should rethink our practices of inhabiting, sharing and being involved in our communities and human settlements to be able to face future crisis.

How should future human settlements be planned, built and managed to prevent similar future situations – such as other pandemics or crisis?

About the course

The course “Rethinking Human Settlements from a Resilience Perspective after COVID-19, part 1: Introduction” introduces the relationship between people and the built environment from a health and urban resilience perspective.

The course aims to give participants knowledge regarding housing and neighbourhood qualities building on the experience during the COVID-19 pandemic, stressing the importance of open urban space, equality and urban resilience when improving or planning future human settlements. Moreover, it seeks to provide an understanding of coping responses to the pandemic in people's everyday life regarding the use of the built environment in different types of contexts.

The course further aims to support participants understanding of mixed-methods and empirical applications in planning and designing of post-pandemic human settlements. The course consists of two modules:

  • People’s living conditions, pandemics and international frameworks
  • The Built Environment, COVID-19 and coping responses

Course assessment

For a passing grade, active study of lectures, and participation in seminars, tutorials and final reviews is required, together with submission of exercises and an approved final essay.

After completing this introductory course participants will be qualified for doing the continuation course Rethinking Human Settlements from a Resilience Perspective after COVID-19, part 2 (7.5 hec) that will be offered in the Autumn 2021.


The course is 100 percent e-learning, which means that participants and teachers interact asynchronously through a web-based tool (Canvas) where course material and lectures will be made available to participants on a weekly basis.

Online lectures are scheduled on Thursdays from 16.00–17.30 UTC +1 (weeks 9 to 18) for participants that can join and will be recorded and uploaded afterwards to Canvas.

On weeks 19 and 20, online lectures are scheduled on Mondays 8.00–9.30 and Thursdays from 16.00–17.30.

Participants would require dedicating around 14.5 hours per week for lectures, self-study and assignments.

Compulsory synchronous digital meetings where participants and teachers meet digitally are scheduled four times during the 14 weeks: at the beginning of the course (1 March, 8.00-9.30), two individual 20 minutes tutorials (15 April and 13 May) and a final half-day seminar to present your final assignment (31 May).

Voluntary question time and discussion will be offered on Mondays from 8.00–9.00. The course includes mostly individual work but also group work to stimulate exchange of experience from different contexts.

Admission requirements

Bachelor degree in:

  • Architecture
  • Landscape Architecture
  • Spatial Planning
  • Urban Design
  • Urban Management
  • Land Surveying
  • Disaster Management
  • Humanitarian Aid and Development
  • Community Building

...or equivalent.

English level: IELTS 6.5 (no section less than 5.5) or TOEFL 90.

Swedish participants: “Engelska 6” or equivalent.

Application process

Applications should be done through the following link:

  1. If you do not have a Swedish personal number, create an account using your email.
  2. Select “Termin: Våren 2021” and write the course code under “Utbildningar: TFRG80”, then click ”Sök utbildningar”
  3. The system will direct you to the course information in Swedish ”Omvärdera utformning av bostadsområden efter COVID-19 utifrån förbättrad motståndskraft, del 1 introduktion”. Select ”Lägg till”
  4. Go to ”Mina val” and select ”påbörja anmälan”. Under “My chosen educations”, select “Start registration”. You can use Google translator to follow these instructions in English.
  5. Upload copy of your passport, certification of English skills (IELTS or TOEFL) and academic degree to prove that you are eligible for the course.

Non-Swedish speakers, who are in need of assistance while applying to the course, are welcome to contact: Ivette Arroyo
WhatsApp: +46739927678

For other questions about the course, please contact

Laura Liuke

You can find more information about Housing Development and Management at

Practical Information

Course Code



7.5 hec


distance course (online) during 14 weeks.


14.5 hours per week

Closing date for application

21 February 2021

Course start

1 March 2021

Course end

4 June 2021

Tuition Fees

Free for EU/EEA citizens
Non-EU/EEA citizens: Application fee: SEK 900. Course fee: SEK 18 125 (equivalent to circa €1 800) paid in full before the course start

Course coordinators

Laura Like

Ivette Arroyo