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Solly Angel All Planned Out? - The Worldwide Impact of the British Town and Country Planning System
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1. United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs, Population Division, World Urbanization Prospects - The 2005 Revision, Working Paper ESA/P/WP/200, Fact Sheet 5, table 4, New York, United Nations, 2006, posted here

All Planned Out?
The Worldwide Impact of the British Town and Country Planning System

18 and 19 May 2007

Shlomo Angel

Solly is Adjunct Professor of Urban Planning, New York University, Lecturer in Public and International Affairs at The Woodrow Wilson School, Princeton University, principal investigator and co-author of The Dynamics of Global Urban Expansion (2005) for the Transport and Urban Development Department of The World Bank

Solly and his co-authors examined the dynamics of global urban expansion by defining a new universe of 3,943 cities with population in excess of 100,000, and drawing a stratified global sample of 120 cities from this universe. Data for 90 cities out of the global sample of 120 are presented and analyzed in this report. Ten econometric models that sought to explain the variation in urban extent and expansion in the universe of cities are constructed, and several hypotheses postulated by neoclassical theories of urban spatial structure were tested. The policy implications of the analysis are presented and discussed.

To download The Dynamics of Global Urban Expansion by Shlomo Angel, Stephen C. Sheppard, and Daniel L. Civco, click on the red button below, and this will take you to the version on the World Bank website:

clickThe Dynamics of Global Urban Expansion (September 2005) 13.2MB

Born and raised in Jerusalem, Israel, Solly received his degree in Architecture at the College of Environmental Design, University of California, Berkeley, in 1967. He recieved his PhD in City and Regional Planning at the same college in 1972.

While at Berkeley, he collaborated with Christopher Alexander and others on two widely-read books on architecture, planning and building: A Pattern Language: Towns, Buildings, Construction (1977) and The Oregon Experiment (1975). These were the second and third volumes of a published series which has The Timeless Way of Buiding (1979), written later, presented as the first volume.

In 1973 Angel started a program in Human Settlements Planning and Development at the Asian Institute of Technology in Bangkok, Thailand. As a Professor of Human Settlements Planning, he taught at the Institute from 1973 to 1983, while undertaking research on housing and planning in the burgeoning cities of South and Southeast Asia.

He also organized and managed the Building Together Project. This was a self-help and mutual-aid housing project for Bangkok slum dwellers. At the end of his tenure at the Institute, he edited and published Land for Housing the Poor (1983).

From the mid-1980s to the mid-1990s, he worked as an international consultant on housing and urban development to the UN Centre of Human Settlements (UN Habitat), to the Asian Development Bank, and to the Government of Thailand.

He also co-drafted the UN's Global Strategy for Shelter for the Year 2000 (1988) and the World Bank's housing policy paper, entitled Housing: Enabling Markets to Work (1992).

From the mid-1990s, Angel worked as a consultant to the World Bank and later the Inter-American Development Bank, preparing and conducting numerous housing sector assessments in Latin America. To-date he has completed such assessments in 10 Latin American countries.

Through the Oxford University Press Solly published Housing Policy Matters: A Global Analysis (2000), as a comparative study of housing conditions and housing policies in 53 countries, based on data collected in the Housing Indicators Program.

That was followed with The Tale of the Scale: An Odyssey of Invention (2003), a book focusing on the teaching of design through the telling of a story. He has also published numerous papers and reports on housing and urban indicators. In recent years, Angel has combined his research and consultancy work with teaching urban planning and housing policy.

Solly currently teaches at the Robert F. Wagner Graduate School of Public Service at New York University, and at the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs at Princeton University.



click here for the Cities Alliance

11.30 to 13.00 on Friday 18 May 2007

Making Room: Preparing the Planet for Urban Expansion


The urban population in developing countries is poised to double between 2000 and 2030, from 2 to 4 billion. (1) Given the persistent decline in population densities the built-up areas of cities are expected to triple during this period.

Humanity has been given a second chance: we now need to build urban areas that are at least equivalent in size to the cities that we have already built. We need to do it better, and we need to do it in a very short time.

In his presentation Solly Angel will review the key attributes of global sprawl. He will explain why it is ubiquitous, why some cities expand more rapidly than others, and why expansion takes different forms. He will also discuss the persistent failure of governments to stem the flow of rural-urban migration, to keep people on the farm, or to redirect population to smaller cities or to lagging regions.

The central conclusion of Angel's analysis is that the best policy for confronting urbanization is to actively prepare for it rather than to hope that it will not occur, to argue why it should not occur, or to try to constrain it.

In concluding his talk, he will discuss effective strategies for preparing the planet for accommodating urban growth, one city at a time.

Making Room: Preparing the Planet for Urban Expansion

You may also like to download the following as background reading:

clickAn Arterial Grid of Dirt Roads: An Activist Urban Expansion Strategy for Developing Countries (March 2007) 2.72MB

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