CPT781 - Development and Urbanisation Processes

SchoolCardiff School of Planning and Geography
Department CodeCPLAN0
Module CodeCPT781
External Subject CodeK400
Number of Credits20
Language of DeliveryEnglish
Module Leader Dr Georgina Santos
SemesterAutumn Semester
Academic Year2015/6

Outline Description of Module

The module focuses on poverty, development and urbanisation. It pays particular attention to potential policies to alleviate poverty and enhance development. Some of the questions that will be discussed include: What is economic development? What is human development? How do poor public health and education affect development and what can be done about these issues? Why are there fewer women than men in some countries and how can improving their status help development? Is there a role for microfinance? What are the impacts of rural-urban migration? What are the problems of the informal sector in cities? What are the impacts of inequality on urban spaces? How did cities originate and how are they changing?

On completion of the module a student should be able to

Students will gain knowledge and understanding of: (1) the differences between the concepts of poverty, inequality, economic development and human development and the measures and indicators that have been proposed; (2) the challenges of education, health and gender inequality in developing countries; (3) the obstacles poor groups in developing countries face in order to access credit and insurance and the solutions that have been proposed; (4) the impacts of rural-urban migration in developing countries; (5) the problems of the co-existence of formal and informal sectors in urban areas in poor countries; (6) the origin of cities and their changing urban forms.

Students will also improve a number of skills they hopefully already have, and: (a) be able to orally present group work on a specific topic; (b) be able to write an individual report with reference to an urban centre, assessing the main impacts of urbanisation and developing proposals to address the urban problems; (c) be able to debate issues related to development and poverty on the basis of knowledge acquired through readings and at lectures; (d) be able to answer specific questions related to the different module topics in writing in a clear and concise manner.


How the module will be delivered

The module consists of lectures, group and class discussions, group presentations, and the occasional use of a relevant video. The group and class discussions promote skills in communication, as does the group presentation, thus helping achieve the skills described under learning outcomes. Most topics throughout the module are illustrated with at least one case-study, which helps put the concepts together.

Skills that will be practised and developed

During the course of the module there will be plenty of opportunities to practise and master a number of skills. Students will be expected to:

1.    write clear and concise answers in the form of short essays, analysing a topic in a logical manner and backing arguments up with academic references.

2.    be able to work in a group to prepare a presentation

3.    debate a topic in class, justifying arguments in a reasoned way.

4.    read the latest research on a topic new to the student and be able to grasp the main points, regardless of the student’s background.

How the module will be assessed

There will be 2 summative assessments supported by formative assessments. The formative assessments will consist of one group presentation, to take place in a session half-way through the term and linked to learning outcome (5) and learning outcomes/skills (a) and class and group debates and discussions, to take place virtually every week, and linked to learning outcomes/skills (c).

Essay 70%
Report 30%

Most of these assignments can be undertaken by students with almost any disability. However, individual cases will be catered for if a student were unable to complete any of the assignments described above due to a disability.


The potential for reassessment in this module


Students are permitted to be reassessed (usually once) in a module which they have failed, in line with course regulations. The reassessment will usually take place during the summer.

A student failing the module will typically re-sit Assignment 1 (set of questions in writing to be submitted via Learning Central over the summer re-sit period). The student will be required to answer a similar set of questions, which will relate to the same topics but will not necessarily be the same questions set in the original assignment. In some instances, the student may be also asked to complete Assignment 2 again, also during the summer re-sit period.




Assessment Breakdown

Type % Qualifying Mark Title Duration(hrs) Period Week
Written Assessment 70 N/A
N/A 1 N/A
Report 30 N/A
Individual Report
N/A 1 N/A

Syllabus content

Poverty, Economic Growth, Economic Development and Human Development. Measures (Gross National Income and Human Development Index). Millennium Development Goals. Inequality. Education. Financial markets, microfinance and insurance. Rural-Urban Migration (allowing different groups of students to concentrate on different aspects or case studies).Gender. International aid. Health. The Urban Economy and Employment. Inequality in the city. History of Urban development.

Essential Reading and Resource List

Bridge, G. and Watson, S. (2000). A companion to the city. Oxford: Blackwell [particularly Chapters 21 and 23].

Bryceson, D. F. and Gough, K. V. and Rigg, J. and Agergaard, J. (2009) Critical commentary. The World Development Report 2009, Urban Studies, 46 (4), pp. 723-738.

Cole, D., Lee-Smith, D. And G. Nasinyama (2008) Healthy City Harvests: Generating Evidence to Guide Policy on Urban Agriculture. Lima: CIP/Urban Harvest and Makerere University Press. Chapters: 1, 2, 4, 5 and 13. Others as interest might take you.

Currie-Alder, B., Kanbur, R., Malone, D.M. and M. Rohinton (Eds.) (2014) International Development: Ideas, Experience and Prospects, Oxford: Oxford University Press. Pre-print available on http://www.developmentideas.info/download/

Duncan, O. (1961) From social system to ecosystem. Sociological Inquiry 31, pp. 140-149.

Escobar, A. (1995) Encountering Development: The Making and Unmaking of the Third World, Princeton, Princeton University Press. Chapter 3: Economies and the Space of Development, pp. 55-102.

Kiely, R. (1999) The last refuge of the noble savage? A critical assessment of post development theory’, The European Journal of Development Research 11(1), pp. 30-55. (Read Escobar first and then this for a critique of the critique!).

Lyons, M. and Snoxell, S. (2005) Sustainable Urban Livelihoods and Marketplace Social Capital: Crisis and Strategy in Petty Trade Urban Studies 42, pp. 1301-1320.

Moser C. (1998) The Asset Vulnerability Framework: Reassessing Urban Poverty Reduction Strategies World Development 26 (1), pp. 1-19.

Mougeot, L. J. A. (2006) Growing Better Cities: Urban Agriculture for Sustainable Development. Ottawa: International Development Research Centre.

Pieterse, E. (2009) African Cities: Grasping the Unknowable. African Centre for Cities, University of Cape Town.

Portes, A. and Schauffler, R. 1993. Competing perspectives on the Latin American informal sector Population and Development Review 19(3), pp. 33-60.

Rakodi , C. E.d. (2002) Urban livelihoods: A people-centred approach to reducing poverty London : Earthscan. Particularly chapters 1, 7 & 13. 

Ray, D. 1998. Development Economics.Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press [chapters 14 and 15].

Reardon, T., Timmer, C. P., Barrett, C. B. and Berdegue, J. (2003) ‘The rise of supermarkets in Africa, Asia, and Latin America’, American Journal of Agricultural Economics 85(5), pp. 1140-6.

Satterthwaite, D., McGranahan, G., and Tacoli, C. (2010) Urbanization and its implications for food and farming. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences 365, pp. 2809-2820. 

Sen, A. 1992. Missing women. British Medical Journal, 304 (7 March), pp. 587-588.

Sen, A. 2003. Missing women – revisited. British Medical Journal, 327 (6 December), pp. 1297-1298.

Sonnino, R. (2009) Feeding the City: Towards a New Research and Planning Agenda. International Planning Studies, 14 (4), pp. 425-436.

Sustainable Food City: Cardiff Steering Group (2012) Cardiff Food Charter
Available at: http://www.cardiff.ac.uk/research/sustainableplaces/news/sustainable-food-city.html. (Read website and follow link to the actual charter).

Todaro, M. and Smith, S. 2009. Economic Development. 10th ed. Harlow: Addison-Wesley [chapters 1, 2, 5, 7 and 8].

United Nations Development Programme. Human Development Reports 1990-2011. New York.

Background Reading and Resource List

Argenti, O. and Marocchino, C. (2005) Urban Food Supply and Distribution in Developing Countries and Countries in Transition: A Guide for Planners. AGSF Occasional Paper 3. Rome: Food and Agriculture Organisation.

Boadi, K., Kuitunen, M., Raheem, K., and Hanninen, K. (2005), Urbanisation Without Development: Environmental and Health Implications in African Cities, Environment, Development and Sustainability 7, pp. 465–500.

Brown, A., M., B., Lyons, M., & Dankoco, I. (2010) Street traders and the emerging spaces for urban voice and citizenship in African cities. Urban Studies 47 (3), pp. 666-683.

Brown, A., M., B. (2006) Contested Space: Street trading, public space and livelihoods in developing cities. Rugby: ITDG.

Castillo, G., E. (2003) Livelihoods and the City: An overview of the emergence of agriculture in urban spaces, Progress in Development Studies 3, pp. 339-344. (Also good for the next session).

Cheng, L., & Gereffi, G. (1994) The Informal Economy in East Asian Development International Journal of Urban and Regional Research 18 (2), pp. 194-219.

Coudouel, A, Hentschel, J. S., and Wodon, Q. T. 2001. Poverty measurement and analysis. In World Bank, Poverty Reduction Strategy Papers (PRSP) Sourcebook, Washington D.C. Available at: 

Cull, R., Demirguc-Kunt, A. and Morduch, J. 2009. Microfinance meets the Market. Journal of Economic Perspectives 23(1), pp. 167-192.

Deneulin, S. and Shahani, L. (eds). An Introduction to the Human Development and Capability Approach. London – Sterling.VA: Earthscan. Chapters by:
-Alkire, S. and Deneulin, S. 2009. The Human Development and Capability Approach, pp. 22-48. 
-Spence, R. 2009. Economic Growth, pp. 73-100.
-Alkire, S. and Santos, M.E. 2009. Poverty and Inequality Measurement, pp. 121-161.
-Unterhalter, E. 2009. Education, pp. 207-227.
-Johnson S. 2009. Institutions, Markets and Economic Development, pp. 162-184.
This book is freely available at: http://www.idrc.ca/en/ev-143029-201-1-DO_TOPIC.html

Duflo, E., Rema, H. and Ryan, S. 2005. Monitoring Works: Getting Teachers to Come to School. NBER Working Paper No 11880.  NBER Working Paper Series. Available at: http://www.nber.org/papers/w11880

FAO (2011) Food, Agriculture and Cities: Challenges of Food and Nutrition Security, Agriculture and Ecoysystem Management in an Urbanizing World. FAO Food for the Cities Multi-disciplinary initiative position paper. Rome, Food and Agriculture Organisation.

FAO (2012) Growing Greener Cities in Africa, Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations, Rome.

Glewwe, P. and Kremer, M. 2006. Schools, Teachers, and Education Outcomes in Developing Countries. In Hanushek, E. and Welch, F. eds. Handbook of the Economics of Education. Elsevier, pp. 945-1017. [Available on LearningCentral]

Hall, S. (1994) ‘The West and the Rest: Discourse and Power’, in Stewart Hall & Bram Gieben, eds., Formations of Modernity, Polity Press, Cambridge. (Excellent for background understanding of ‘discourse’ deployed by Escobar).

Hoselitz, B. F. (1953), The Role of Cities in the Economic Growth of Underdeveloped Countries, Journal of Political Economy 61 (3), pp. 195-208. (Read as example of historical discourse on the subject). 

Hovorka, A., de Zeeuw, H. and M. Njenga, eds. (2009) Women Feeding Cities: Mainstreaming Gender in Urban Agriculture and Food Security. Rugby, UK: Practical Action Publishing.

Kabir, M., Rahman, A., Salway, S. & Pryer, J. (2000) Sickness among the urban poor: a barrier to livelihood security, Journal of International Development 12 (5), pp. 707-722.

Kremer, M.; Chaudhury, N.; Halsey, F.; Muralidharan, K. and Hammer J. 2005. Teacher Absence in India: A Snapshot. Journal of European Economic Association 3(2-3), pp. 658-667. 

Kremer, M., Edward M. and Thornton, R. 2004. Incentives to Learn. NBER Working Paper No 10971. NBER Working Paper Series. Available at: http://www.nber.org/papers/w10971

Ladd, H. 2002. School vouchers: a critical view. The Journal of Economic Perspectives 16(4), pp. 3-24. 

Morduch, J. 1999. The Microfinance Promise. Journal of Economic Literature 37 (4), pp. 1569-1614. 

Pacione, M. (2009) Urban Geography: A Global Perspective. London: Routledge.

Perkins, D., Radelet, S., Snodgrass, D., Gillis, M. and Roemer, M. 2001. Economics of Development. 5th ed. New York – London: W. W. Norton & Company.
Chapter 1: Introduction, pp.3-26.
Chapter 9: Education, pp. 319-344.
Chapter 13: Financial Policy, pp. 476-522.

Ray, D. 1998. Development Economics. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press. 
Chapter 2: Economic Development: Overview,  pp. 7-46.
Chapter 6: Economic Inequality, pp. 169-196.
Chapter 7: Inequality and Development: Interconnections, pp. 197-248.

Rocha, C., & Lessa, I. (2009) Urban governance for food security: The alternative food system in Belo Horizonte, Brazil.  International Planning Studies. 14(4), pp. 389-400.

The Economist. 2010. Economics focus: A wealth of data - A useful new way to capture the many aspects of poverty. Jul 29th 2010. Available at: http://www.economist.com/node/16693283

United Nations Development Programme. 1990. Human Development Report 1990: Concept and Measurement of human development, New York. 
Chapter 1: Defining and Measuring Human Development, pp. 85-103. http://hdr.undp.org/en/media/hdr_1990_en_chap1.pdf
Technical Notes: Technical Notes, pp. 104-113. http://hdr.undp.org/en/media/hdr_1990_en_technote.pdf
Chapter 5: Urbanisation and Human Development, pp. 85-103.

United Nations Development Programme. 2003. Human Development Report 2003:
Millennium Development Goals: a Compact among Nations to end Human Poverty, New York.  http://hdr.undp.org/en/media/hdr03_complete.pdf

United Nations Development Programme. 2009. Human Development Report 2009:
Overcoming barriers: Human mobility and development, New York.  http://hdr.undp.org/en/media/hdr03_complete.pdf

United Nations Development Programme. 2010. Human Development Report 2010 - 20th Anniversary Edition: The Real Wealth of Nations: Pathways to Human Development, New 
York.  http://hdr.undp.org/en/reports/global/hdr2010/
Overview, pp. 1-9.
Chapter 1: Reaffirming Human Development, pp. 11-24.

Watson, V. (2009), ‘The planned city sweeps the poor away. . .’: Urban planning and 21st century urbanisation, Progress in Planning 72 (2009), pp. 151–193.

World Bank (2009) World Development Report. Chapter 4: Scale Economies and Agglomeration. (Interesting to compare to Hoselitz’s account).


© Cardiff University