Not available in 2013/14
SO452      Half Unit
Urban Environment

This information is for the 2013/14 session.


This course is available on the MSc in City Design and Social Science, MSc in Environmental Policy and Regulation, MSc in Gender, MSc in Gender, Development and Globalisation, MSc in Gender, Policy and Inequalities, MSc in Regional And Urban Planning Studies and MSc in Urban Policy (LSE and Sciences Po). This course is available with permission as an outside option to students on other programmes where regulations permit.

Course content

To develop a critical understanding of the conditions and the politics of sustainability that shape the urban environment. This is an interdisciplinary course that introduces students to a critical understanding of the conditions that shape urban environments. It makes connections between the social, physical, and environmental aspects of cities through a broad range of topics. The course is structured around four key themes: Conceptualisations of urban environments, Environmental and spatial justice, Politics of infrastructure, and approaches to sustainable urban environments. The aim of the course is to introduce the students to the range of scales and social actors who imagine different kinds of urban environments, and the issues at stake for 'sustainability' in these imaginings.


10 hours of lectures and 10 hours of seminars in the LT.

Indicative reading

Key texts include: Harvey, D (1996) Justice, Nature, and the Geography of Difference, Oxford: Blackwell; Heynen, N., Kaika, M., and Swyngedouw, E. (2006) In the Nature of Cities: Urban Political Ecology and the Politics of Urban Metabolism, London: Routledge; R Rogers, (1998) Cities for a Small Planet, London: Faber press.; Barry J, Environment and Social Theory 1999, London: Routledge.


Essay (100%, 5000 words) in the ST.
Attendance at all seminars and submission of all set coursework is required.

Student performance results

(2009/10 - 2011/12 combined)

Classification % of students
Distinction 13.3
Merit 52
Pass 28
Fail 6.7

Key facts

Department: Sociology

Total students 2012/13: Unavailable

Average class size 2012/13: Unavailable

Value: Half Unit

Guidelines for interpreting course guide information