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Urban Politics Lecture Notes.docx

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Political Science
Rachael Gibson

Wednesday July 4 2012Tindal and TindalChapters 1 and 3John Peter 2009 Why Study Urban Politics In Theories of Urban Politics second editioneds Jonathan S Davies and David L Imboscio pp 1723 Los Angeles Sage Lecture 1 Why should we study urban politics and local governmentTable of Contents Key DefinitionsWhat to Local governments actually doThe Changing Context and Growing Importance of Urban MunicipalitiesUrban Politics and Local Government as an area of Scholarly Research DefinitionsLocal govtin the text the type of govt subnational scaletowns villages citiesa process by which policies are made within a designated geographical area Municipal vs local government o Often used interchangeably o Textbook distinguishes between the two o Municipal govt the type o Local govtthe process Basic Features of Municipalitiesincorporated entities eg Village town cityempowered to deal with a wide range of local issuesdefined by distinct geographic boundariesgoverned by elected councilsgranting tax power Government and Governancegovt refers to particular kinds of public institutions vested with formal authority to make decisions on behalf of the entire local communityCollaborative relationships and decisionmaking take place between officials in these local institutionsGovernance refers to the myriad of other institutions and organizations beyond govt which collaborate to make decisions that affect the local communityIt includes collective decisions made in the pubic sector Multilevel Government and GovernanceGovernment refers to the arrangements bn municipal and provincial govt officials municipal and federal government officials or all levels of govt GasTax Fund Agreement Federal Municipal Governance Describes a situation in which municipal govt and one f the other levels of govtWhat do Municipal govts do Provide services o Subordinate to and often viewed as less important than other levels of government o Deal Mainly with boring issueseg Roads parks garbage disposal o But this is no longer the case especially in large cities o Increasing array of functions and responsibilitiesOwn telecommunications systems airports water treatment plants operate community welfare systems hostels shelters after school programs galleries museums engage in economic development environmental cleanups host world fairs OlympicsSee full list of examples pp 1011 of Tindal et al o But municipal and fiscal and revenue sources do not correspond to this increase oVehicles for Local Democracy the level of government that is closest to the peopleOpportunities for citizen engagement and input in local government policydecision making processestraining ground for elected representatives and local citizens JS MillFundamental to liberty and selfgovernment de Toqueville DurhamMain Purpose of Local GovernmentMunicipalities are in a unique position to provide services specifically tailored to the needs and preferences of the local communityTo effectively do so they must engage citizens in democratic governance processes rather than simply focus on delivering the services delegated to them by the provinceGlobalization and Senior Government Offloading create challenges as well as create challenges as well as opportunities for the realization of this purposeThe Changing Municipal Context Demographic shifts and increasing Urbanization Processes of Globalization and Changes in the International Economic ContextChanges in the Ideological Principles Underlying Governance PracticesChanging Demographics and Increasing Urbanization baby boomers reaching retirement age puts strain on social welfare system healthcare pensions housingLocal govts at forefront of many service delivery challenges public transit housing accommodation recreational facilitiesprogramsLow birth rate means immigration is key to population replacementstabilityVast majority of immigrants settle in urban centersThere are opportunities and challenges faced with thisTests the inclusiveness of municipal policiesoperationsUrbanizationIncrease in Population and in population density Trends towards Urbanization in Canadaover 13 lives in largest urban areasToronto Montreal and Vancouvergrowth is tracked in CMAs 1 or more adjacent municipalities33 in 200668 live in CMAs Municipalities vs CMAs the Toronto CMA includes Vaughn Ajax Aurora Brampton Caledon King Markham Milton Canadian Cities Basic TypesUrban Area1000 or more residents and 400 ppl per sq kmCensus Agglomerationa place with 1 or more adjacent municipalies situatied around an urban core with a pop of at least 10000Census Metropolitan Area a place with 1 or more adjacent municipalitiessituated around an urban core with a pop of at least 100000CityRegionUrbanization Economic Benfits
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