Teaching Urban Economics to Planners and the Role of Urban Planning to Economists

Nancy Brooks

in The Oxford Handbook of Urban Economics and Planning

Published in print December 2011 | ISBN: 9780195380620
Published online September 2012 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Handbooks

 Teaching Urban Economics to Planners and the Role of Urban Planning to Economists

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This article attempts to demonstrate that the work of urban planners and economists is built on a common language, and hence should share ideas. Their agendas broadly overlap, but many in either profession do not realize this. Understanding the microeconomic foundations of the array of problems facing urban planners is a key step to gaining insights that can lead to innovative and effective planning policy. This article aims at helping urban economists (and microeconomists in general) to appreciate the complex environment in which the planner operates and the relative importance of equity and sustainability in their work. This includes, for planners, a foundation in microeconomic and urban economics and, for economists, an understanding of the complex environment facing planners. The result thus anticipated is a more thoughtful research that makes the connections from policy to market impacts or from market or individual behavior and outcomes to policy effectiveness.

Keywords: urban planners; economists; microeconomic foundations; planning; market impacts; policy effectiveness

Article.  6271 words. 

Subjects: Economics ; Urban, Rural, and Regional Economics

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