BLOG SURF: Asian cities

Asia’s urban population is growing at an unprecedented rate. It took 130 years for London to grow from 1 million to 8 million, but Bangkok did it in 45 years, Dhaka in 37 years, and Seoul in only 25 years.

Asia’s rapid urbanization driven by entrepreneurial and commercial dynamism has been pivotal for its stellar growth, but often to the detriment of urban environments.

Increasingly, the environmental downside of urbanization, rather than its economic upside, is in the public eye. The issues of how cities can continue to be drivers of growth in an environmentally sustainable way is rising on the development agenda.

At a recent event on Cities and Middle-Income Countries in Singapore attended by development and urban practitioners from 18 countries, participants honed in on politics and governance, inclusion of the poor in urban development, quality of open spaces,, and the role of evaluation.

Although there is no single prescription for all Asia’s cities.