5.3.6  Economic and social systems

The process of urbanisation has positive as well as negative economic and social changes. The positive effects include economic development, and education. However, urbanisation places stresses on existing social services and infrastructure. Crime, prostitution, drug abuse and street children are all negative effects of urbanisation. Also there tends to be a lack of social support for children in school and home by their hard-working, usually poor, parents. Inadequate income, overcrowded housing and poor living conditions create a fertile ground for the development of violence. Violent crime is more visible in the cities than in rural areas and it affects people’s everyday life, their movements and the use of public transport. Crime in the city can create a sense of insecurity in its inhabitants. This unsafe feeling in city streets separates residential areas into higher-income and lower-income groups, which reduces the sense of community and forms areas with dissimilar incomes, costs and security levels.

In the next study session we will look at some of the ways in which these problems and challenges can be addressed by considering the future demands for urban living and by taking a planned approach to the development of new urban areas.

Summary of Study Session 5