Accueil > Mediterranean and Middle Eastern Metropolis

OGLM 2070 - Mediterranean and Middle Eastern Metropolis

Type d'enseignement : Seminar

Semester : Spring 2017-2018

Number of hours : 24

Language of tuition : English



Course Description

This course focuses on Mediterranean and Middle-Eastern metropolis and the urbanization process in the region. Taking stock of the multiple mobilities between the North and the South of the Mediterranean and the arbitrary meaning of cultural divide regarding cities, the course also takes into consideration the metropolis of the European edge of the sea. Adopting a geographical lens completed by interdisciplinary accounts, the course emphasizes the complex interaction between rapidly changing societies, power relations and urban planning. First analyzing the foundations and specificities of Mediterranean and Middle-Eastern cities, the lectures then focus on the social, economic and political changes linked with a glance at various phases of urban growth. They explore how these changes have redefined urban landscapes and livelihoods. Differences and common trends in the region and the wider international context in terms of housing production are highlighted as well as urban regulation and professional framing. The course offers an opportunity to reflect on planning related issues in large post-industrial metropolis and city-regions as well as newly urbanized areas subject to global conflicts, battles for image and democratic challenges.


VERDEIL, Eric (Professor at Sciences Po)

Pedagogical format

The course combines lectures by the teacher and discussions of weekly assigned readings.

Course validation

An essay (50%) the topic of which is presented in a proposal on class 7 (10%). An oral presentation of a book or on selection of articles related to the class (25%). Involvement in class discussions (15%).


Two academic texts to read every week.

Required reading

  • Ababsa Myriam, Dupret Baudoin, Denis Eric (dir.), 2012, Popular housing and urban land tenure in the Middle East, American University in Cairo
  • El Sheshtawy Yasser, ed., 2008, The evolving Arab city. Tradition, modernity and urban development, Routledge
  • Sharp, Deen, and Claire Panetta, eds. 2016. Beyond the Square: Urbanism and the Arab Uprisings. 1st edition. New York: Terreform.
  • Sims David, Understanding Cairo. The logic of a city out of control, American University in Cairo press, 2011

Additional required reading

  • Petrov A., ed., 2013. New geographies, 5: The Mediterranean Harvard: Harvard University Press.Singerman Diane (dir), 2011, Cairo contested. Governance, urban space and global modernity, American University in Cairo
  • Barthel Pierre-Arnaud, (ed) 2010, Built Environment, special issue "Arab mega projects", juin 2010
  • Bayat Asef, 2009, Life as politics. How ordinary people change the Middle East, Le Caire, The American university in Cairo Press
  • Beckedorf A.-S., 2012, Political Waters: Governmental Water Management and Neoliberal Reforms in Khartoum/Sudan, LIT Verlag Münster
  • Harb, Mona, and Sami Atallah, eds., Local Governments and Public Goods: Assessing Decentralization in the Arab World (Beirut: LCPS and OSI, 2015) online
  • Lorrain Dominique (dir.), 2017, Métropoles méditerranéennes. Gouverner par les rentes, Presses de Sciences Po (online via Cairn)
  • Navez Bouchanine Françoise, 2012 (dir), Effets sociaux des politiques urbaines. L'entre-deux des politiques institutionnelles et des dynamiques sociales, Paris, Karthala
  • Petrov A., ed., 2013. New geographies, 5: The Mediterranean Harvard: Harvard University Press
  • Petrov A., ed., 2013. New geographies, 5: The Mediterranean Harvard: Harvard University Press
  • Wippel S. (éd.), 2014, Under construction: logics of urbanism in the Gulf Region, Routledge