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TCP8921 : Globalisation and Social Justice

  • Offered for Year: 2022/23
  • Module Leader(s):
  • Owning School: Architecture, Planning & Landscape
  • Teaching Location: Newcastle City Campus
Semester 1 Credit Value: 10
ECTS Credits: 5.0


The first aim is to develop the students’ critical understanding of the two broad phenomena globalisation and social justice. Planning literatures usually focus on a particular country or region of the world when interrogating poverty, human rights infringements, inequalities or other social justice related issues. This course arranges various conceptualisations and examples related to globalisation thematically, demonstrating how such discussions cut across the world in different ways and play in various locations in relation to particular settings and conditions. It also reveals how differences related to social justice issues are linked not only to questions of policy and development but also include social and cultural dimensions.

Second, the course approaches the study of globalisation and social justice through an interdisciplinary approach, particularly through various social science disciplines including Sociology, Geography, Politics, Economics, Environmental Studies and Anthropology.

Third, the course links theoretical debates on globalisation and social justice to current affairs. Students will be expected to use tools they learn in class to respond to news and other current events that they will be debated I the workshop/discussion sessions. Discussions are an important aspect of this class to hone skills in critical thinking and analysis.

Outline Of Syllabus

The world is on track of becoming increasingly an urban, globalised society but poverty and inequality still prevail. In many cities and communities, regardless of terms such as ‘the developed world’, ‘the West’, ‘the Global South etc. This module explores globalisation and resulting issues of change affecting cities generally and particularly in the Global South. Its aim is to help you understand and critically evaluate change from a social justice perspective.
•       Our world today: globalisation and the connected society. Urbanisation & rising demographics.
•       Social Justice & Right to the city
•       Urbanisation and physical change 1: Formal planning and design
•       Urbanisation and physical change 2: The Informal City
•       Economic change: the rise of neoliberalism, the mantra of growth and the politics of Austerity. Plutocratic cities
•       Political change: power, people and planning
•       Environmental Change: planning in the age of climate emergency. Tactical urbanism, bio architecture and greening the future
•       Technological change – AVs, smart cities and accelerated digitalisation. Post Covid19 Urban Futures?
•       Summary: The world today -from local to global. ‘Glocalisation’?

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion155:4555:45Reading and research specifically focussed on assessment preparation and completion
Structured Guided LearningLecture materials102:0020:00PIP: standard lecture material delivered in classroom
Guided Independent StudyDirected research and reading112:0022:00students undertake reading before class for better understanding the lecture material
Guided Independent StudyDirected research and reading10:150:15Welcome video: Setting out programme content, background reading, delivery methods, assessment arran
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesWorkshops12:002:00PIP: The workshop/discussion sessions will focus on discussing the assignment
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

The Structured Guided Learning Activities provide a detailed explanation of the key issues and an examination of important literature in relation to the two large themes tackled: globalisation and social justice. The Scheduled Learning and Teaching Activities provide support for discussions about the application of the theoretical concepts presented in the lecture material to current urban and global issues. The Guided Independent Study will enable students to both achieve the intended knowledge and skills outcomes identified for the module, as well as enabling to help them prepare for the creation of their assessment submission.

In case of lockdowns, the lectures and the workshop will move to online Zoom face2face sessions.

Assessment Methods

The format of resits will be determined by the Board of Examiners

Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Research paper1M100Write a critical essay of no more than 2500 words (excluding bibliography, tables and illustrations).
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

Students are encouraged to explore an issue of globalisation (& social justice) that interests them and they want to know more about and think critically on how global flows affect that particular location (in terms of capital/people/ideas etc…). Students are asked to use the critical skills and the knowledge they gathered during the Module referring to different key current phenomena related to globalisation and write a high quality, critical essay/research paper. This then helps meet the Learning outcomes set for this Module. within these broad subjects. The students are guided in the assignment by being presented with a series of possible topics they can choose from, such as:
•       theories of globalisation or social justice, old and new – so you might want to write a theoretical, critical essay on What is Globalisation? Or What is Social Justice?
•       the economics of globalisation: neoliberalism, capital flows and transnational companies;;
•       inequality, poverty and labour migration;
•       the rise of informal cities & slums;
•       the consequences of globalisation on industrial and agrarian labour and gender relations;
•       globalisation & sustainable development – what ways ahead towards more sustainable futures?
•       governance and political freedoms; including movements and resistances to globalisation and/or neoliberalism;
•       Technological fears & dreams: automation & work; increased surveillance

Marking Criteria
The essay will be assessed as follows:
45% of the marks for critical analysis
45% of the marks for engagement with literature
10% of the marks for presentation, including grammar, spelling and punctuation and the use of images, graphics etc

Reading Lists