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Unformatted text preview: ECON 4411A, Fall 2011 Development Economics Summary Notes: Week Six, Lesson 1 Urbanization and its key driver -Rural to Urban Migration Quote of the day: Creativity requires the courage to let go of certainties. ERICH FROM Introduction Urban populations have been on the rise in developing countries over the last 50 years. There is a positive relationship between GDP per capita and % of urbanization. However, a country could have increased urbanization without an increase in GDP per capita. This is the common trend in many LDCs. According to the UN estimates, urban populations were up to 3 billion by 2003 with well over 2/3 living in developing countries. Urban population growth in some of the largest cities in the world range from about 1% for some cities in developed countries like Tokyo to over 6% in Nairobi, Lagos and Accra. Among the top 15 largest cities in the world, 11 are located in LDCs and 4 in DCs. The top ten largest cities in the world in 1995 were Tokyo, Sao Paulo, New York, Mexico City, Mumbai, Shanghai, Los Angeles, Beijing, Calcutta, Seoul. However among the top 15 cities in population size, Lagos (presently ranks 15th in population size) has the highest growth rate in population of over 5.68% and would rank among the top three largest cities by 2020. Cities with over 10 million people are generally called mega cities most of which are in the developing countries. In 1975 there were only 5 mega cities but by 2000, there were 19 such metropolises. Interestingly, all both two of these mega cities(New York and Tokyo) are located in the developing world. It is interesting to know that for the first time, the world’s urban population is now as large as its rural population. The big question is how would this LDCs cope economically, environmentally, and politically with these high population concentrations? Questions like these are topics for research among economist involved in urban economics and development. Some Definitions 1. Urban bias: Refers to the general government bias in development strate- gies towards urban areas. 2. Agglomeration economies : is the cost advantage to consumers and producers provided by a large concentration of people in a city or urban area. There are two kinds of agglomeration. Urbanization Economies: which is associated with the general growth of a concentrated geographic region and...
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- Fall '11