Howard and Irene Levine Program in Housing and Social Responsibility


Howard and Irene Levine Program in Housing and Social Responsibility

Housing is fundamental to our quality of life, not just in Los Angeles, but around the world. UCLA possesses the academic expertise and core public education and service mission to play a leadership role in this area. The Howard and Irene Levine Program in Housing and Social Responsibility addresses timely and critical issues related to urban and rural housing markets; and affordable housing policy, provision and sustainability; particularly the housing needs and outcomes of low-income and workforce households.

The Levine Program, comprised of a multifaceted set of enterprises, challenges and inspires UCLA students to think about broader societal issues in the context of their professional and personal pursuits, empowers UCLA faculty and doctoral students to undertake cutting edge research in the field, and enables the Ziman Center to serve the community by promoting public dialogue and education, all for the betterment of society.

Program Details


The Howard and Irene Levine Program in Housing and Social Responsibility is made possible by a generous gift from Howard and Irene Levine. Mr. Levine is a member of the Founding Board of the UCLA Ziman Center for Real Estate and is a distinguished alumnus of the UCLA Anderson School of Management. In 2011 UCLA Anderson celebrated its 75th anniversary and identified Howard Levine among its 100 Inspirational Alumni.

Graduate Course in Affordable Housing Development

The Levine Program's Affordable Housing Development & Finance MBA course elective (MGMT298D) is designed to provide students with a foundational understanding of affordable and workforce housing development. The course will begin by familiarizing students with the site selection and acquisition process, and will then explore the complexities associated with land use, entitlements, and the political landscape. Next, the course will evaluate the various financing tools available to affordable housing developers, including low-income housing tax credits, tax-exempt bond financing, and various federal, state and local funding sources. Classroom activity consists of lectures, case studies, guest speakers, and a final project.

UCLA Distinguished Speaker Series in Affordable Housing

The UCLA Distinguished Speaker Sereis in Affordable Housing brings leading industry experts, scholars and policy makers to UCLA to engage students on the critical issues and current trends in affordable housing development and preservation in Southern California. Lecture topics include: affordable housing finance and development in California in the wake of the dissolution of redevelopment agencies, community economic development, transit-oriented development, homelessness and permanent supportive housing, green building and approaches to creating more sustainable neighborhoods in Los Angeles.

Learn More

MBA Real Estate Field Study

One of the key components of the Ziman Center’s Levine Program is an MBA Real Estate Field Study, which is implemented through UCLA Anderson School of Management’s Applied Management Research (AMR) and Strategic Management Research (SMR) MBA programs. Each year, the Ziman Center collaborates with a for-profit, non-profit, or public sector housing provider or agency, and matches that company/organization with a team of MBA candidates. The students work under the guidance of a faculty advisor in a directed, six-month consulting engagement with the client to develop a Strategic Business or Consulting Plan that delivers solutions to critical challenges through top-notch analysis. Given the current social unrest in the U.S. and around the world, and our renewed focus on systemic racism broadly speaking, special priority will be placed on projects that address this issue, although not to the exclusion of other meaningful projects.

The Ziman Center’s Levine Program sponsors the $7,500 - $10,000 program fees for one organization, which includes a research budget for the team to conduct primary research. Our MBA students provide more than 1,500 hours of work over a 20-week period to produce a rigorously tested, professional-grade consulting report based on extensive primary and secondary research.

Previous Levine MBA Real Estate Field Study partnering organizations include:  Step Up on Second (2013),  Mercy Housing (2014),  Many Mansions (2015),  City of Pasadena Department of Housing and Career Services (2016), UCLA Institute for Transportation Studies (ITS) (2017),  Japanese Institute of Sawtelle (2018),  A Community of Friends (2019), Daylight Community Development BCO (2019), and Sacramento Area Council of Governments (2020).

Annual Housing Summit

Under the auspices of the UCLA Ziman Center for Real Estate, the Levine Program supports an annual summit focused on issues of affordable housing, housing markets, finance and policy.

(Download the report (pdf) from the 2014 UCLA Levine Summit: Toward Building an Affordable Housing Agenda.)

Fellowships in Housing and Sustainability

The Levine Distinguished Fellows Program augments the training of the most gifted and ambitious students pursuing real estate education at UCLA in the areas of low-income and/or workforce housing affordability, related policy, housing and health, sustainability and redevelopment. The Center selects an exclusive group of students each year to serve one-year terms as Levine Distinguished Fellows. Fellows are chosen for their passion for real estate and social responsibility, academic accomplishments, leadership, and service to the real estate program at UCLA.

The program is open to any UCLA Anderson MBA/EMBA/FEMBA student, UCLA Law student, UCLA Luskin School of Public Affairs  Urban Planning or  Public Policy student, or UCLA Fielding School of Public Health student who is entering the last year of his/her respective UCLA Anderson/Law/SPA/Fielding graduate studies program. Program highlights include honorific designation as a Levine Distinguished Fellow; assigned mentorship with a relevant high-level Ziman Center industry affiliate; social entrepreneurial real estate leadership training, select internship opportunities, and targeted career planning and placement; and complimentary admission to all UCLA Ziman Center events, including the invitation-only Ziman Center summits, policy briefings, and industry events.

Housing and Sustainability Research

The Levine Program annually awards research stipends to UCLA faculty, post-doctoral scholars, and visiting scholars to undertake cutting-edge research in the field of housing affordability and sustainability, real estate finance, urban economics and associated topics such as capital markets, housing and mortgage and related securitization markets, macroeconomics and the regional economy, land use, environmental sustainability, urban transportation, municipal finance, housing and health-related outcomes, and the regulatory environment. Academic research papers funded by the Levine Program are disseminated via the UCLA Ziman Center Working Paper Series, monthly UCLA Economic Letter and UCLA Affordable Housing Policy Brief.