UMass Boston

view of boston skyline from boston harbor islands.
Urban Harbors Institute

Advancing Ocean and Coastal Management

The Urban Harbors Institute is an applied research institute in the School for the Environment at UMass Boston. Since 1989, UHI has been investigating and addressing the economic, social, and natural complexities found in coastal areas.  

UHI's mission is to promote thriving ocean and coastal communities and sustainable natural resources through research, planning, engagement, and education. 

Most of UHI’s work is done in partnership with or on behalf of entities such as municipal and state governments, regional planning agencies, non-profits, and research organizations. 

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About Us

Who We Are 

UHI works closely with governments, marine industry representatives, non-governmental organizations, and members of the public to understand and address a wide variety of ocean and coastal topics. 

What We Do 

Provide research, technical assistance, and advisory services 

UHI offers assistance in fields such as: 

  • Coastal and harbor planning  
  • Natural resource management 
  • Climate change
  • Working waterfronts
  • Coastal laws and regulations
  • Environmental justice 
  • Community engagement and education
  • Water transportation
  • Geographical information systems  

Advance research and knowledge sharing 

UHI collaborates with partners to build networks dedicated to advancing thriving coastal communities and healthy ecosystems in Massachusetts and beyond. As a facilitator, manager, and convener of networks, webinars, and events, UHI aims to create space for productive conversations, information sharing, and capacity building.  

Educate the next generation of ocean and coastal professionals 

UHI provides UMass Boston’s diverse student body with hands-on experiences, preparing them for jobs after graduation. As employees, interns, volunteers, and program participants, students work on solving real-world problems while gaining important skills such as critical thinking, project management, and networking. 


Giving to UMass Boston

Support scientific planning and management expertise to assist governments and communities to address issues associated with harbors and coastal areas. 

Give Now 

Contact Us

Urban Harbors Institute
Phone: 617-287-5570
100 Morrissey Boulevard
Boston, MA 02125