Course Subject
Course Number
Course Credit

Comparative Land Use Planning

Course Description

The course starts with the unique nature of land. How does land, a natural resource, come to be owned? How is ownership and use of land different from other forms of property?

What are the different modes of organizing land ownership? Since land is both a public and private good, who is entitled to the benefits that accrue from land? These readings will engage with key concepts - like externalities, transaction costs, land rent, public interest, rights and obligations, fairness and access to property - which we will keep returning to during the rest of the course. The next section is a comparative analysis of land-use planning. Against some key background readings that will prepare the stage for discussion, each session will interrogate a specific land-use instrument – eminent domain, land readjustment and zoning – through a set of comparative country cases. The course will engage with key planning challenges that arise in the context of rapid urbanization in developing countries. Some of these challenges are unprecedented, such as the rapid expansion of urban growth outside cities boundaries and the new challenges of peri-urban land use planning. Others are older debates that take on new meaning and urgency in the contemporary context, such as the new modes of functioning of informal real estate markets in a global era. We will ask if conventional land use planning tools are adequate to respond to these new urban conditions, and if light of these limits, we will discuss some of the new land-use innovations in dealing with these challenges.


PADM-GP 2201 Recommended