At a time when three-quarters of the world’s urban population, ninety per cent of urban population growth, and poverty and social exclusion are increasingly concentrated in towns and cities in developing regions it is vital we understand the theoretical and empirical relationships between urbanism and development. The programme reviews urbanism from colonial to the contemporary period, emphasising demographic, social, economic, cultural and political processes. The programme pays particular attention to the aims and achievements of contemporary policy with reference to housing and land markets, finance, gender, governance, the role of global development institutions and non-governmental organisations.
Aims and objectives of the programme
The programme attempts to provide a conceptual and empirical basis from which to understand urban ‘problems’ and critically evaluate the prescribed ‘solutions’. Students will develop an understanding of how urban and development theory have changed over time, and how these theories combine and conflict in their application to real world situations. Students will be encouraged to appreciate how a wide range of policy intentions and outcomes can be evaluated from economic, social, political and cultural perspectives, from international to local scales, and in ways sensitive to concerns for gender, ethnicity, social justice and democratic deepening.
View programme structure with links to course content and preliminary reading. Note that not all courses are offered every year.
This programme is intended for graduates with a good first degree in either geography, development, sociology, planning, anthropology or any discipline with a substantive urban or development studies component. The Department encourages applications from mature candidates with work experience, and can be taken full-time (one year) or part-time (two years). The programme is expected to be attractive to students seeking future employment in academic institutions, programme and policy positions in international agencies (World Bank, UN), bi-laterals (DfID), and NGOs and private consultancies, and governments in developing countries.
How to apply
To apply to the LSE, you can either:
Application instructions are available from the graduate school.
You can contact the graduate admissions office using their contact details
Initial enquiries can also be made to either: