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Issue № 63. August 2017

Urban Concepts Evolution: An Analysis of the Main Trends

Anna A. Voloshinskaya

Senior Researcher, Institute for Applied Economic Research, Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration under the President of the Russian Federation, Moscow, Russian Federation.
E-mail: voloshinskaya-aa@ranepa.ru

The purpose of the article is to study the evolution of the approaches to the development of cities and territories. Over the past decades, urban development concepts have undergone significant changes, reflecting technological and socio-economic changes in society. In the 1980’s urban planning approaches focused on the creation of compact, life-friendly cities with a developed network of public transport, and in the 1990’s — on balanced growth, in the 2000’s the emphasis shifted to social development and environmental protection, as well as building a digital city and a knowledge city. After 2010, the focus is on people, their interests and needs.

The theoretical substantiation of the concepts of urban development is also changing. In the 1980’s and 1990’s, the emphasis was on internalizing and eliminating negative effects; later the focus shifted to creating positive externalities by applying new technologies, innovations and investing in human capital. The reactive approach is replaced by a proactive one: focusing on creating the conditions for development, effective management, and establishing a “creative environment”. At the same time, the concepts become more and more anthropocentric — they are addressed to a wide audience, and the city is increasingly viewed from the position of a person: their emotions, interests, needs and motives.

Keywords

Urban development concepts, sustainable development, municipal governance, sustainable city, theoretical justification.

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