Cities and Development

Half of the world’s population will soon live in cities, and the major factor behind this statistic is rapid urbanization in developing countries. Productivity in cities is the driving factor behind the recent economic transformation of many countries, including India and China. Rapid urbanization is equally prevalent in countries without the same high levels of economic growth, especially in sub-Saharan Africa. In spite of these facts, the majority of current and historical academic research in development economics is focused on the challenges facing the rural poor, and overlooks the issues facing cities.

To highlight the need to further crystallize an agenda around the study of cities in developing countries, and following the success of the 2nd IGC Cities Conference, the IGC is hosting a series of one-day conferences of academics to take place in Cambridge, MA at Harvard University.

The first event took place on 6 May 2016, the second conference took place on 5 May 2017.

The event report of the second conference can be found below.

The audience consists of a mix of senior academics, junior academics and graduate students who work on urban economics and development economics.

The conference is structured around a series of short papers by junior researchers, early stage research proposals by graduate students, and discussions from senior urban and development economists.

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