Urban Geographies: Cities, Ecologies, Politics GEOG4095

  • Academic Session: 2019-20
  • School: School of Geographical and Earth Sciences
  • Credits: 20
  • Level: Level 4 (SCQF level 10)
  • Typically Offered: Semester 2 (Alternate Years)
  • Available to Visiting Students: Yes
  • Available to Erasmus Students: Yes

Short Description

This course examines the interrelationship between urbanization and nature, with a particular emphasis on how social power relations produce and change socio-physical conditions. The course starts from the premise that nature and society are not separate, but are mutually intertwined.


2 to 3 hours per week (lectures and seminars) for 10 weeks

Requirements of Entry

Students should have completed Level 2 Geography at minimum of grade D3

Excluded Courses



A 2500-word essay on a topic to be selected from a list circulated at the beginning of the semester and an unseen 90-minute exam.

Main Assessment In: April/May

Are reassessment opportunities available for all summative assessments? No

Reassessments are normally available for all courses, except those which contribute to the Honours classification. For non Honours courses, students are offered reassessment in all or any of the components of assessment if the satisfactory (threshold) grade for the overall course is not achieved at the first attempt. This is normally grade D3 for undergraduate students and grade C3 for postgraduate students. Exceptionally it may not be possible to offer reassessment of some coursework items, in which case the mark achieved at the first attempt will be counted towards the final course grade. Any such exceptions for this course are described below. 


This is an Honours course.

Course Aims

■ To theorize how the urban and the physical world interact;

■ To explore the entanglements of social and physical conditions that shape urbanization;

■ To develop a critical understanding of the socio-ecological dynamics of urbanization;

■ To explore the key factors that shape socio-environmental activities and their spatial configurations and outcomes;

■ To show how urbanization as a socio-environmental process is also political processes;

■ To illustrate these processes by means of concrete historical-geographical examples.

Intended Learning Outcomes of Course

By the end of this course students will be able to:

■ Explain the key concepts and theories that underpin urban political ecology;

■ Be able to critically discuss the relationships between people and their environments;

■ Understand the political significance of the entanglement of urbanization and socio-ecological processes, problems, and conditions;

■ develop critical discussions on diverse urban issues and struggles over urban spaces across the world

■ offer critical analysis on the notions, epistemologies, methodologies and ethics of urban research

Minimum Requirement for Award of Credits

Students must submit at least 75% by weight of the components (including examinations) of the course's summative assessment.