Understanding cities is a diverse enterprise. It is a multi-disciplinary endeavour that draws on, or at least needs to be aware, of the contribution of those social sciences which aim to unravel urban processes. Why and how cities develop, how urban life is experienced and managed no more fragments neatly along disciplinary lines than should our understanding of them.
Throughout the world, the study of cities takes place within a wide variety of social sciences as well as in the some humanities disciplines. Furthermore, in the study of cities a major split occurs between those focusing the economic as opposed to the more social questions raised by cities. In the former the focus is on city economies, their change and how policy intervention is able to steer change; in the latter the emphasis is more on social life and change, power and inequalities. As such, the readings in both Urban Studies - Economies and Urban Studies - Society set out to map the multidisciplinary nature of the field.
Urban Studies - Economies:
Volume I - What are Cities?
Volume II - The Urban Economy
Volume III - Urban Economy, Connecting Cities
Volume IV - Managing & Steering Economies
Urban Studies - Society:
Volume I - Cities as social Spaces
Volume II - Experiencing the City
Volume III - Designing & Planning Cities
Volume IV - Cities, Ideas & Ideals
Ronan Paddison is Emeritus Professor of Geography at the University of Glasgow. His research interests focus on the political processes driving urban change and, in particular, under what conditions local participation can contribute to the making of more inclusive and democratic cities. Recent projects have included the role of community participation in the installation of public art, and the limitations to public participation in the post-political city. He is Managing Editor of Urban Studies and of Space and Polity.