An Urbanized and Unequal Planet

In this piece from <em>Metropolis</em>, Joel Kotkin argues that as the world urbanizes, cities are becoming increasingly unequal and do not provide the opportunities they once did.
February 25, 2011, 11am PST | Nate Berg
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Kotkin argues that cities need to focus more on helping the low- and middle-classes.

"Cities in the developing world are growing, but largely because they're the only alternative to poverty and even starvation in the countryside. These cities are not only failing to provide opportunities for upward mobility; they're producing the class inequalities found in "luxury cities" such as London and New York.

Once rigidly egalitarian, China now has some of the world's highest rates of income inequality. The central cores of Beijing and Shanghai employ legions of well-paid European and American architects and planners, but few concern themselves with the camps inhabited by poor, often temporary workers, who constitute roughly one-fifth of the population and live in conditions more reminiscent of a Brazilian favela than an 'urban glamour zone.'"

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Published on Monday, February 14, 2011 in Metropolis
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