Option 7: Urban Environments
This optional theme considers cities as places of intense social interaction and focal points of production, wealth generation and consumption. They exhibit diversity in patterns of wealth and deprivation, which can result in conflict. Transport improvements have led to rapid growth and shifts in population and economic activities producing stresses and challenges for planners.
It also considers issues of sustainability where the city is regarded as a system whose inputs and outputs need to be managed in order to minimize environmental impacts.
This theme recognizes that cities and towns may share common characteristics and processes irrespective of the national level of economic development.
For all sections of this optional theme (unless stated otherwise), two case studies of cities/large urban areas must be studied in two countries at contrasting levels of development.