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GEOG 2UI3 Study Guide - Final Guide: Urban Planning, Managerialism, Fordism

Course Code
Robert Wilton
Study Guide

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WEEK 1-12
Week 1-2:
Where did our discipline come from?
Thinking critically
Propose new concepts that shed light on processes, relationships, and how they
Developing research that is socially relevant and politically engaged;
Taking seriously the experiences, lives, practices, and words of ordinary urban
residents and marginalized groups.
Chicago School to the rent gap: perspectives on inner city change
Rent Gap” = Continued capital depreciation + Continued outward urban
expansion and development
Urban slums or ‘transition zone’ → sees that poor, dirty, etc. areas are
happening within the inside (rather than outside)
E.g. urban homelessness
Cities as socio-spatial processes
Socio-spatial process” = mutually consecutive relationship between society and
Context for cities → social and spatial in the sense that cities are always tied up
with interests (you can dictate the power of a city just by what you can visually
Urban planning of cities is a socio spatial process bc planning is future-oriented --
actors engage to govern how development takes place

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The city as a 3-part socio-spatial process
Urbanization and development
Neoliberalism” = first instance a theory of political-economic practices that
proposes that human well-being can best be advanced by liberating individual
entrepreneurial freedoms and skills within an institutional framework
characterized by strong private property rights, free markets, and free trade
David Harvey
Elements of Neoliberalism → POLICY or IDEOLOGY
E.g. policy → defunding, privatization, expanding free trade,
E.g. ideology → “active citizen” in labour force, personal
responsibility, etc.
In the neoliberal era….
Cities are for profit and growth -- this is for the creative class and massive
corporations who benefit the most from this. Corporations are attracted to
bigger cities, which in turn attracts the creative class, which results in
gentrification and suburban growth
Week 3-4:
Urbanization and capitalism: best buddies
Includes → money, private property/ownership, division of labour, etc.
Capital undergoes… “restless formation and re-formation of geographical
landscapes” - David Harvey
How Capitalism Produces Urbanization…
Producing surplus value (aka profit)
E.g. raw materials extraction
“I can just buy stuff and not grow it myself”
Enhancement through agglomeration
Centres of innovation + government/management
Coping with recession

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Restlessness of capitalism and changing urban forms
Capital undergoes the “restless formation and re-formation of geographical
landscapes" in which configurations of capitalist territorial organization are
constantly created, destroyed, and reconstituted […]” (Brenner 1999, about
Harvey’s work)
Capital is always moving, looking ways to depress cost
Cities end up created and destroyed in the process
Ex. Early capitalist economies that took advantage of ex. Near waterfalls
for water mills….. Once water mills became obsolete, capital moves to
different area for the next commodity (leads to ghost towns)
Urban form and urban economies
“Urban form” = type and distribution of the infrastructure in the city
Key factor for influencing environmental state of a city
Trend → transportation and buildings all use energy and influences the
quality in cities
Fordism, post-Fordism
Fordist → small houses, local parks, etc.
Post-Fordist → Residential neighbourhoods, large parking lots
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