TCP2028 : Understanding Cities

Semester 2 Credit Value: 20
ECTS Credits: 10.0


• To build critical, social-scientific understanding of contemporary cities and processes of urban change.
• To give students an understanding of the key debates in contemporary urban theory.
• To link theoretical debates, processes of urban change, and urban policy and planning debates using specific case studies and examples.

This module uses a range of teaching styles – lectures, videos and discussions – to present a cutting-edge and critical introduction to the understanding of contemporary cities. The course addresses a wide range of types of cities; ’global’ cities such as London; postindustrial cities such as Newcastle; and Global South mega-cities such as Mumbai. Using the latest insights from a wide range of social-scientific research on urban change to address this wide range of examples, the module will allow students to gain insights into contemporary urban theory. It will use these to build an understanding of how contemporary cities are changing and how these changes raise major challenges for urban planning and policy making.

Outline Of Syllabus

1. Introduction: An urban planet
2. Postindustrial city
3. Polarised city
4. Ecological city Mobile city
5. Secure city
6. Ageing city
7. Resilient city
8. Informal city
9. Mobile city
10.Global city
11.Cultural city
12.Cosmopolitan city

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture122:0024:00N/A
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion155:0055:00N/A
Guided Independent StudyDirected research and reading155:0055:00N/A
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesSmall group teaching111:0011:00Seminar
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesDrop-in/surgery11:001:00N/A
Guided Independent StudyIndependent study154:0054:00N/A
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

• The lectures will provide inputs of the theoretical and case study material.
• Seminars will provide exemplification of the case studies, video case studies and opportunities for students to discuss linkages between the theoretical, empirical and policy-centred elements of the course.

Assessment Methods

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

Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Essay2M1003,000 words
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

The assessed essay will be designed to assess student’s ability to connect theoretical, empirical and policy-relevant material.

Reading Lists