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Challenges for Planning in the Global South

This course examines the historical foundations and a range of contemporary critical challenges and associated strategies for sustainable urban and regional planning in the Global South.

The course is offered freestanding and is also part of Human Geography II – course package Globalization and Cities, 30 HECs, and elective in the second semester within the Bachelor's Programme in Human Geography – Society, Environment and Global Processes, 180 HECs, and within, among others, the Bachelor's Programme in Urban and Regional Planning, 180 HECs, the Bachelor's Programme in Geography, 180 HECs, and the Bachelor's Programme in Global Development, 180 HECs.

  • Course structure

    Urban-rural dynamics and the rapid and ongoing urbanization in most countries in the Global South places substantial pressure on urban planning for a sustainable development; socially, culturally, environmentally and economically.

    Many people live in informal settlements and work within the informal economy leading to challenges for the everyday lives of urban residents and for the official planning systems. Many people live neither discretely urban nor rural lives but move between urban and rural spheres in order to improve their livelihoods.

    This course will raise, highlight and discuss theoretical perspectives and challenges for sustainable planning in Southern contexts. We will discuss how urban and regional planning in the global South are influenced by development theories such as the largescale modernistic ideas as well as alternative post modernization approaches that, for example, focus on alternative framings of central challenges and solutions including an emphasis on the micro-scale, uneven development, and local practices and forms of knowledge.

    Teaching format

    Instruction is conducted in the form of introduction, lectures and seminars.

    Detailed information, including grading criteria, is provided at the course introduction and via the learning platform Athena.

    Teaching language: English

    Learning objectives

    After completing the course, the student is expected to be able to:

    • describe historical and contemporary challenges in urban areas in the Global South.
    • describe how different development and planning theories explain historical and contemporary challenges for social development.
    • analyse consequences of urban and regional planning strategies.
    • discuss future challenges and possible solutions for urban and regional planning in the Global South.


    Examination takes place via assignments.


    Several teachers assess and grade within the course.

    Examiner: Lowe Börjeson, Department of Human Geography

  • Course reports

  • Contact

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