• Offered by Crawford School of Public Policy
  • ANU College ANU College of Asia and the Pacific
  • Course subject Policy and Governance
  • Academic career PGRD
  • Mode of delivery Online or In Person

It is estimated by the UN that by 2050, 2.5 billion people will be added to the world’s urban population. Governments, communities and residents in developing countries are experiencing serious challenges caused by the massive increase in urban population in a short time. On the one hand, we see lots of negative outcomes: the destinations of migration struggle to cope with the pressure hosting an influx of people from poorer backgrounds, and the home of migrants suffer from loss of talent and often become trapped in poverty and societal disruption. On the other hand, we also see the enormous opportunities urbanisation can bring to migrants, businesses and the society as a whole.

This course is designed to develop a deeper understanding of the concept, patterns, causes, processes and impact of urbanisation in developing countries, and examine how cities in the world have responded to the challenges. 

In this course, the course examines the role of urbanisation in the broader process of economic and social development. We try to establish how urbanisation has challenged the established policies and governance in the cities and communities affected. We examine the role of different stakeholders, such as low-income families, communities, markets, the state and others in terms of shaping the process of urbanisation, coping with the pressure for housing, social protection, land supply, and overcoming geographical and environmental constraints.


Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:


After taking the course, the students are expected to get familiar with the cutting edge and innovative research that are taking place in this field. In this field, be familiar with the key issues and be able to write research papers based on the case studies to address the following questions:

·         What are the problems and difficulties urbanisation has caused?

·         Who decide these problems to be “problems of the society”?

·         Who are responsible for solving these “problems”?

·         Where does the money come from?

·         How to get multiple stakeholders to work together to solve a set of such complex issues that are so entangled with each other?

·         How to deal with the issues of urbanisation when a society also faces other challenges such as environmental constraints, population aging or economic growth/recession?

Learning Outcomes: 

On completion of the course, students can develop a better understanding of the driving forces behind and characteristics of urbanisation in developing countries, its impact on broader development processes, the challenges of urbanisation to different social groups and the coping strategies. 

Through interactive teaching and case presentations, the students should be able to make use of the relevant theories to develop an argument and write an analytical research paper based on real life cases. 

Indicative Assessment

1. Presentation and tutorial performance (10%)

2. Short Essay (30%)

3. Long essay (60% - redeemable)

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The course will involve 1 hour lecture, and 1.5 hour case studies with student presentations and discussions.  The course is highly interactive, and students will be expected to contribute to the course actively


Tuition fees are for the academic year indicated at the top of the page.  

If you are a domestic graduate coursework or international student you will be required to pay tuition fees. Tuition fees are indexed annually. Further information for domestic and international students about tuition and other fees can be found at Fees.

Student Contribution Band:
Unit value:
6 units

If you are an undergraduate student and have been offered a Commonwealth supported place, your fees are set by the Australian Government for each course. At ANU 1 EFTSL is 48 units (normally 8 x 6-unit courses). You can find your student contribution amount for each course at Fees.  Where there is a unit range displayed for this course, not all unit options below may be available.

6.00 0.12500
Domestic fee paying students
Year Fee
2018 $3660
International fee paying students
Year Fee
2018 $5160
Note: Please note that fee information is for current year only.

Offerings, Dates and Class Summary Links

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There are no current offerings for this course.

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