On Sustainable Cities in the Developing World

The World Bank Sustainable Cities
World Bank Blog Series


This new platform is designed for urban development professionals to exchange ideas, and address two foundational questions: What makes a sustainable city? How do we measure a city's sustainability? This space also serves as a portal to sustainable city news and articles professionals are currently reading.

Global Report on Urban Health: Equitable, Healthier Cities for Sustainable Development
World Health Organization: UN-Habitat for a Better Urban Future

This 2016 WHO report, centering on Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) moves beyond global demographic trends (specifically the projection that half of the anticipated world’s population that will live in cities in 2050), to link urban sustainability with health, economic productivity, social stability and inclusion, climate change and healthy environments, built environment and governance. 

Poverty, Urbanization, and Environmental Degradation: Urban Streams in the Developing World
by Krista A. Capps, Catherine N. Bentsen and Alonso Ramírez

Basic infrastructure to support water supply and wastewater treatment is frequently lacking in lower-income countries, impacting both human health and for ecosystem structure and function.  The authors discuss  relationships between urban watersheds and marginalized human populations in lower-income countries, arguing that that sustainable management of urban watersheds and the provisioning of drinking water and sanitation services require integration of innovative technology and financing schemes into ecosystem-based management.

Sustainable Urban Transport in the Developing World: Beyond Megacities
Dorina Pojani and Dominic Stead

Megacities receive a disproportionate amount of attention over other sizes of cities over smaller and medium-sized cities in conversations bout urban sustainability. In principle, smaller cities allows for flexibility in terms of urban expansion, adoption of “green” travel modes, and environmental protection. At the same time, smaller and medium-sized cities often have fewer resources to implement new transport measures and can be more vulnerable to fluctuations in the world economy.


Cities and Development: 2nd Edition
by Sean Fox Tom Goodfellow

This 2016 Routledge revised and expanded second edition surveys: the historical origins of world urbanization; the role cities play in the process of economic development; the nature of urban poverty and the challenge of promoting sustainable livelihoods; the complexities of managing urban land, housing, infrastructure and urban services; and the spectres of endemic crime, conflict and violence in urban areas. This updated volume also contains two entirely new chapters: one that examines the links between urbanization and environmental change, and a second that focuses on urban governance and politics.