SISE 2018

Join us in Chicago for our 8th annual program, (re)new, from August 9-22. There is no program fee, everyone that participates receives lodging on campus free of charge, and there are travel scholarships available for many traveling to Chicago.


About (re)new

What makes a neighborhood a community, or a house vibrant, engaging and productive? Is it the people that reside there, physical places like buildings and streets and parks, or the experiences that are made there? If you have ever responded viscerally to the vitality of a place, you may agree that it’s all of the above. How can we enhance the distinct flavor of neighborhoods and cities, preserve spaces that hold significant value, and revitalize an area to seize economic and cultural opportunities while continuing to serve the community that resides there?

How do we p(re)serve historic buildings and the "flavor" of an area while modernizing and serving the people of the community?

How do we (re)vitalize neighborhoods? (HINT: It takes more than some fresh paint, solar panels, and a cat and unicorn dabbing out on the sidewalk.)


(re)new presses us to answer these and similar questions in the context of cities and neighborhoods. It asks that we (re)think what it means to be vital and sustainable and how we (re)envision our communities to move boldly into the future.

Historic architecture needs to be (re)cognized. Older buildings need (re)pair and (re)trofits. Traffic flow and mobility need to be (re)freshed. (re)newable energy needs to be deployed. The vision of communities needs to be (re)generated to preserve their place in our shared story. Vacant lots wait to be (re)claimed and (re)made into public spaces, urban gardens, or commercial enterprises.

Neighborhoods that have seen population decline and business move away slowly over decades seek to (re)store their place in the community and (re)brand themselves as welcoming and exciting places.

Imagine how this space could benefit the community...

Imagine how this space could benefit the community...

At re(new), SISE will engage community organizers, business leaders, and technology innovators to share their perspectives, tackle questions of planning, policy, and livability, and work with neighborhoods to develop solutions that take them into the future with purpose, vigor, and aspiration. 


What to Expect

Long days, hard work, meaningful experiences, and lots of laughs. SISE Fellows (or SISE'ers) network with brilliant and inspiring professionals from diverse fields, explore fascinating sites and take "behind the scenes" tours, work with communities to tackle obstacles in a meaningful way and explore one of North America's largest cities with a fun crowd of bright and diverse future leaders. 

For pictures, videos, and more info on what you might expect check out these recaps from some of our previous programs.



Every year, we're fortunate to have some of Chicago's top professionals and academics join us to present talks and work with participants as mentors. Check out our stellar faculty below and come back for updates as we bring on more faculty.

Please note: We don't have cats in fancy ties and hats on faculty - those are just placeholders. :)