Accueil > The Geography of Urban Infrastracture: Water, Sewage, Waste, Energy & Urbanisation

KGLM 2165 - Geography of urban infrastructure : water, sewage, waste, energy and urbanisation (The)

Type d'enseignement : Seminar

Semester : Autumn 2018-2019

Number of hours : 24

Language of tuition : English



Course Description

Urban infrastructures are key to the social and economic development of large metropolis. They are at the core of local, national and international strategies aiming to widen access to urban services, to improve health and social inclusion, as well as economic performance. Demographic and spatial growth, widespread poverty combined with the rise of upper and middle classes are leading to increasing pressures on supply and the environment. New business models have to coexist with the need for strong public commitment. The goal of the class is to provide the basic elements to understand the technical and policy challenges the management of infrastructure is facing, sector by sector (water, energy, sanitation and waste management) and as a whole. The geographical perspective will articulate an analysis of the governance of urban infrastructure with a wider look at the urban political ecology of the metropolis.


VERDEIL, Eric (Professor at Sciences Po)

Pedagogical format

The class will articulate lectures on the fundamentals of infrastructure's management, sectors' specificities and policy issues, with a weekly collective of cases studies. Three weeks well be dedicated to the collective analysis of a database on infrastructure management

Course validation

Oral presentation on readings ; collective workshop on international data related to the sector's dynamics; final essay on emerging practices in the field of urban infrastructure


Weekly readings (2-3 texts)

Required reading

  • COUTARD, O., RUTHERFORD, J. (ed.), 2016, Beyond the networked city: infrastructure reconfigurations and urban change in the North and South, London etc., Royaume-Uni de Grande-Bretagne et d'Irlande du Nord, Routledge
  • COUTARD, O., 2008, « Placing splintering urbanism: Introduction », Geoforum, vol. 39, n° 6, p. 1815 1820.
  • GRAHAM, S., and S. MARVIN, Splintering urbanism : networked infrastructures, technological mobilities and the urban condition (London: Routledge, 2001)
  • A kind of summary of the book's thesis: GRAHAM, S., 2000, « Constructing premium network spaces: reflections on infrastructure networks and contemporary urban development », International Journal of Urban and Regional Research, vol. 24, n° 1, p. 183 200.
  • GRAHAM, S. (ed.), 2010, Disrupted cities : when infrastructure fails, New York; London, Routledge.

Additional required reading

MCDONALD, D. A., RUITERS, G. (ed.), 2012, Alternatives to Privatization: Public Options for Essential Services in the Global South, Routledge.