GY447      Half Unit
The Economics of Regional and Urban Planning

This information is for the 2019/20 session.

Teacher responsible

Dr Felipe Carozzi S416


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 CEMS Exchange, MBA Exchange, MPhil/PhD in Economic Geography, MSc in Development Management, MSc in Development Studies, MSc in Human Geography and Urban Studies (Research), MSc in Local Economic Development 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.

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


Students should normally have completed an introductory course in economics. Students without this background may wish to attend the micro-economic section of EC100 Economics A together with the Pre-sessional GY447 and GY447.1 workshops.

Course content

The course aims to provide an economic framework in which to analyse the structure of economic activity within the urban and regional context; the impact of this structure on urban form; the role of government at the local level and local economic policy applications. Topics include: The determinants of industrial, commercial and residential location. The interaction between activities within a spatial context. The economics of land markets and of the development process. The determinants of rents and densities. Economic models of urban structure. Sources of market failure in the urban economy. The rationale of government intervention. Techniques of intervention in the urban and environmental context. The role of the public sector: pricing, allocation, production and investment decisions. Urban and regional economic policy issues.


20 hours of lectures, 9 hours of seminars and 5 hours of workshops in the MT. 1 hour of workshops and 2 hours of workshops in the LT. 2 hours of lectures in the ST.

There will also be 5 hours of pre-sessional classes in Week 0 provided mainly for those without a previous economic background.  The MT workshop is also aimed at those without a previous economic background.

Formative coursework

Students will be expected to produce 1 piece of coursework in the LT.

Indicative reading

1) A O'Sullivan Urban Economics;

2) J F McDonald and Daniel P. McMillen, Urban Economics and Real Estate;

3) J Stiglitz, Economics of the Public Sector;

4) Pindyck & Rubinfeld Microeconomics, Suslow & Hamilton Study Guide.

5) J Brueckner, Lectures in Urban Economics

5) D DiPasquale & W C Wheaton, Urban Economics and Real Estate Markets;

6) R W Vickerman, Urban Economics;

8) H Dunkerley (Ed), Urban Land Policy: Issues and Opportunities;

More detailed readings will be provided during the course.


Exam (100%, duration: 2 hours) in the summer exam period.

Student performance results

(2015/16 - 2017/18 combined)

Classification % of students
Distinction 6.8
Merit 46.6
Pass 39.8
Fail 6.8

Key facts

Department: Geography & Environment

Total students 2018/19: 33

Average class size 2018/19: 18

Controlled access 2018/19: No

Value: Half Unit

Guidelines for interpreting course guide information

Personal development skills

  • Problem solving