World Cities Part One

Half of world cities

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Key Definitions

Rural-Urban migration - movement from rural to urban areas

Slum - a spontaneous informal urban settlement 

Megacity - an urban area with a population of over 8 million

World city - a city with a major economic and ploitical power

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Rural-urban migration

Most of these who move to cities from the countryside are young, fertile people who therfore cause a high birth rate within cities - migration fuels high internal growth

Internal growth account for 60% of urban population growth, migration for around 30% and reclassification of rural to urban areas of the world have the fastest urban growth rates, and migration tends to dominate internal growth

many rural-urban migrants are well informed about the city to which they are migrating, they may be aware that life in cities is not good, but may consider the long term prospects to be better than in urban areas.

Push factors - poverty, conflict, natural disasters, crop failure, land subdivision

Pull factors - jobs, healthcare, education, safety, housing, bright lights  

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Contrasting Megacities

rapidly growing cities and megacities are diverse...

Level of development - many of Asia's cities are centres of wealth, many of Africa's are desperately poor

Type of migrant - some migrants may be young, skilled and entreprenerial, others may be older, poorer and perhaps forced to migrate

Growth characteristics - some cities may be growing largely because of migration, others because of internal growth

Planning - many Asian cities are beginning to plan their growth, whereas in Africa planning is prevented by poverty and lack of planners

Rate of growing population - this varies from around 2-4% per year for Latin American cities, 4-8% for some African and Asian cities

Processes - Different urban processes are occuring in different cities

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Contrasting megacities

Los Angeles - mature 

Home to 24 million, formal economy, high quality of life for most, counter urbanisation and reurbanisation

Mumbai - consolidating

Home to 21.3 million, 60% in slums manufacturing important, 50% informal economy, most basic needs met, rapid population growth, urbanisation and suburbanisation ( attempts at planning)

Lagos, Nigeria - immature

Home to 10 mollion, 79% in slums, informal economy-60% small scale manufacturing, street trading, urban farming, poor quality of life for many, urbanisation-little planning, uncontrolled sprawl

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Urbanisation processes

Urbanisation - the increase in the percentage of people living in towns and cities 

Suburbanisation - wealthy people move to suburbs to escape poverty, pollution and crime etc.

Counter urbanisation - the movement of people out of cities and towns into rural areas

Re-urbanisation - may follow attempts to regenerate areas of cities that have declined

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