Key Concepts in Urban Studies

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Mark Gottdiener & Leslie Budd

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    The SAGE Key Concepts series provide students with accessible and authoritative knowledge of the essential topics in a variety of disciplines. Cross-referenced throughout, the format encourages critical evaluation through understanding. Written by experienced and respected academics, the books are indispensable study aids and guides to comprehension.

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    Introduction

    When Chris Rojek, of SAGE Publications UK, approved this book, we were impressed with his desire to support a ‘Key Concepts’ series, but we also expected a fairly straightforward experience as authors. This was not to be the case.

    Starting out as a simple guide for undergraduates, this book became much more. As we examined concepts, it was evident that urban studies had been victimized by several decades of sloppy writing and loose thinking. A great confusion and misunderstanding crept into published work on the urban condition at the same time as significant advances were made. Assembling these basic concepts in urban studies and writing about them in a clear and concise manner proved a difficult task.

    In what follows we have tried to identify sources of confusion in the usage of terms as well as discuss in as precise language as possible the advances that have been made by the discipline. In the end, we hope our efforts are of some value in returning key concepts to urban studies in a language free of ambiguity and fuzzy thinking. Our enterprise is a true collaboration between Budd (UK) and Gottdiener (US). Knowing that the field of urban studies depends on comparative knowledge, we have tried to cover UK and US cases, as well as provide information on research pertinent to locations across the globe.

    This book is not meant to be read starting with the first entry, The Chicago School, and proceeding to its last page. It is a reference work that we hope will supplement other books used in courses or projects on urbanism. Consequently, it can be picked up and opened to any topic depending on need. As the authors however, we would like to suggest that the entries below might be used in another way that would lend themselves more directly to teaching courses in urban studies. Wherever appropriate, we have cross-referenced access to similar topics. There is also a cumulative way of assembling separate entries into discussions that might transpire throughout a course in urban studies, geography, planning or sociology. For this latter purpose, we humbly offer the following suggestions which, at the minimum, attest to the flexible way the entries below can be used:

    Urban Sociology and Urban Studies

    The City, Models of Urban Growth, Counties, The Multi-centered Metropolitan Region, The Chicago School, Urbanization and Urbanism, Socio-spatial Approach, Community, Neighborhood, Postmodernism and Modern Urbanism, De- and Re-territorialization, Feminine Space, Masculine Space, Immigration and Migration, Nightlife and Urban Nightscapes, Pedestrian and Automobile, Suburb and Suburbanization, Education and Reproduction of Labor, Environmental Concerns, Ghetto and Racial Segregation, Global Cities, Globalization, Homelessness, Housing, Inequality and Poverty, The Informal Economy, Overurbanization, Real Estate, Slums and Shanty Towns, Sprawl, Uneven Development, Urban Violence and Crime, Planning, Sustainable Urbanization, Urban Politics and Suburban Politics, Urban and Suburban Social Movements.

    Urban Planning

    The City, Models of Urban Growth, Counties, The Multi-centered Metropolitan Region, Urbanization and Urbanism, Socio-spatial Approach, Community, Neighborhood, Postmodernism and Modern Urbanism, De- and Re-territorialization, Feminine Space, Masculine Space, Immigration and Migration, Nightlife and Urban Nightscapes, Pedestrian and Automobile, Suburb and Suburbanization, Ghetto and Racial Segregation, Global Cities, Globalization, Homelessness, Housing, Inequality and Poverty, The Informal Economy, Overurbanization, Slums and Shanty Towns, Uneven Development, Urban Politics and Suburban Politics, Urban and Suburban Social Movements, Sprawl, Environmental Concerns, New Urbanism, Planning, Real Estate, Sustainable Urbanization, Preservation, Gentrification.

    Urban Geography

    The City, Models of Urban Growth, Counties, The Multi-centered Metropolitan Region, The Chicago School, Urbanization and Urbanism, The Socio-spatial Approach, Suburb and Suburbanization, Community, Neighborhood, New Urbanism, Postmodernism and Modern Urbanism, De- and Re-territorialization, Feminine Space, Masculine Space, Ghetto and Racial Segregation, Immigration and Migration, Global Cities, Globalization, Homelessness, Housing, Inequality and Poverty, The Informal Economy, Overurbanization, Real Estate, Slums and Shanty Towns, Sprawl, Uneven Development, Urban Violence and Crime, Environmental Concerns, Planning.

    To be sure, there is no definitive way of locking down the exact number of basic concepts that ‘must’ be included in this type of project, nor how to use this book in various courses across disciplines. We had a difficult time merely making entry choices.

    In this regard, M. Gottdiener was helped greatly by the suggestions of a number of people: ‘My thanks for guidance to Ray Hutchison, Chigon Kim, Joe Feagin, Michael Ryan, Kevin Fox Gotham, Talmadge Wright, John Eade, Jill R. Gottdiener, Richard Mancuso, Sueli Schiffer, Mervi Ilmonen, Heli Vaaranen, Noam Shoval, Gustavo Mesch, José Luis Beraud, Phil Gunn, Paavo Lehtuovari, Massimo Russo, Susana Finquelievitch, Christos Kousidonis, Thomas Maloutas, Jesús Leal, José Candelario, David Diaz, John Altevogt, Andrew Jacobs, Bob Catterall, Paul Chatterton, Virve Sarapik, Trin Ojari, Shira Habot, Dan Webb, Frank Ekhardt, and to several anonymous referees.’

    Leslie Budd wishes to acknowledge a debt of gratitude to the following people: ‘the late Len Stafford, the late Mike Cowan, the late Georgina Budd, and John Parr, who have all been important influences in my development. I would also like to thank Vanessa Davidson for her continuing love, personal and professional support over many years.’

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