GY448      Half Unit
Social and Political Aspects of Regional and Urban Planning

This information is for the 2018/19 session.

Teacher responsible

Dr Alan Mace STC315a


This course is compulsory on the MSc in Regional And Urban Planning Studies and MSc in Urban Policy (LSE and Sciences Po). This course is available on the MSc in City Design and Social Science and MSc in Human Geography and Urban Studies (Research). This course is available as an outside option to students on other programmes where regulations permit.

The number of students that can be accommodated is limited. If the course is over-subscribed, places will be allocated at the Department’s discretion and a waiting list may be created. For further details, please contact your relevant Programme Coordinator.

Course content

The course will explore the relationship between key social, political and economic processes and urban planning. These relationships will be considered at national, regional and local scales with a focus on planning as a function of governance. Key concepts covered in the course include: claims for and against urban planning; the relationship between planning and markets; the role of neighbourhood and community, and; the effect of institutional structures on the planning system. The topics are supported through engagement with key strands of planning theory and the use of examples from planning practice.


10 hours of lectures and 13 hours and 30 minutes of seminars in the MT.

Formative coursework

Students will submit a 1,500 word essay.

Indicative reading

Friedmann, J., 2011. Insurgencies: Essays in Planning Theory, Routledge. Hall, P., 2014. Cities of Tomorrow, Wiley. Newman, P.; Thornley, A., 2004. Planning World Cities: Globalization and Urban Politics, Palgrave Macmillan.


Essay (100%, 4500 words) in the LT.

Student performance results

(2014/15 - 2016/17 combined)

Classification % of students
Distinction 23.2
Merit 57.1
Pass 17
Fail 2.7

Key facts

Department: Geography & Environment

Total students 2017/18: 35

Average class size 2017/18: 12

Controlled access 2017/18: Yes

Lecture capture used 2017/18: Yes (MT)

Value: Half Unit

Guidelines for interpreting course guide information

Personal development skills

  • Self-management
  • Problem solving
  • Communication

Course survey results

(2014/15 - 2016/17 combined)

1 = "best" score, 5 = "worst" score

The scores below are average responses.

Response rate: 94%



Reading list (Q2.1)


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