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Cities of Today, Cities of Tomorrow

Unit 6: City Solutions:
A Healthy Urban Future

Objectives Summary Text Activities

Solutions to Urbanization,
Urbanization as Solution

Women in the City The rapid growth of cities presents serious problems for city managers in terms of unemployment, pollution, crime, homelessness, racism, corruption, and health. Yet each of these can also be seen as an opportunity if turned on its head. Job creation can generate wealth, anti-pollution measures can improve health, the building of homes can create self-help opportunities and increase the self-esteem of the homeless - problems, in short, can be opportunities.

"Massive urbanization is the only way the world can survive the massive population increase," claims one expert on urban issues.

The City Summit, convened in June of 1996, had two main goals. On the one hand, the conference was aiming to raise awareness about the problems of our living environment. On the other, it saw this as an occasion to also focus on the potential of towns and cities as catalysts of social progress and economic growth. In preparation for the conference and in its aftermath, a number of positive cases came to light. Many of these are outlined in the "Doing Good" section. A few are highlighted here.

What most of these examples show is that:
  1. no one actor can improve the urban environment alone - responsibility must be shared between governments, non-governmental and community organizations and citizens;
  2. when the community is made a real partner in a project, the project is generally more successful.

Objectives Summary Text Activities
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