Environment & Urbanization

World leading environmental and urban studies journal

Book notes

Engaging our readers in preparing book notes

Our Book Notes section has short descriptions of books, papers and reports that we have prepared on all subjects relevant to urban issues. These are summaries rather than reviews. These go into the Book Notes online database that contains all Book Notes since our 1993 editions. It has facilities for searching by author, title, key word, city or country.

As an experiment, we are opening this to our readers so it can draw on a wider pool of knowledge. So we invite you to send us short summaries of new publications you have read that you found interesting – and relevant to urban issues. Authors may submit summaries too, but not promotional material. We welcome your submission on relevant publications published within the last two years. This includes English-language Book Notes and English summaries of publications in Spanish, French or Portuguese. You will be listed as the author of the summary.

If you would like to submit a Book Note, please search the database on this page to ensure that the publication has not already been covered. Please specify the title, author, publisher, year of publication, number of pages, and ISBN (if applicable). For the description, between one and six paragraphs is sufficient. Book Notes can be sent to Jenny.Peebles@iied.org

(For a searchable database of papers in Environment and Urbanization, go to http://eau.sagepub.com/)

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Against the Commons: A Radical History of Urban Planning by Álvaro Sevilla-Buitrago begins by suggesting that the commons has become not only an e


Architecture is a unique blend of technical, artistic, economic and socio-cultural developments. Spanning both art and science, it is closely linked with urbanism, ecology, microclimate, environment, natural resources, water, energy and public health.


In recent years, the issues of environmental pollution and climate change have been at the forefront of international agendas.


Delhi, a megacity of 20 million, is a symbol of India’s heritage and modernity, old and new. Its multicultural variety makes it a unique and pulsating city.


India’s 7,936 cities and towns with an urban population of 377 million provide 60 per cent of India’s GDP and 70 per cent of its jobs. However, poor infrastructure services, housing and transport do not keep pace with the socio-economic progress and aspirations of the people who live there.


This book by housing and urban development consultant Geoffrey Payne seeks to call more attention to housing issues – especially those in cities in the global South. Part One reviews key issues and how they relate to urban land and housing.


The pandemic has led to rising precarity and has exacerbated several human rights violations in Nairobi’s informal settlements, including unemployment, food insecurity, sexual and gender-based violence, police brutality and other socioeconomic concerns.


How can cities promote resilient, low-carbon and just urbanisation, in a context of increasing climate breakdown and inequality?


This paper describes an action-research study in which experienced community networks in four Southeast Asian countries collectively reflected on, compared and documented the innovative work they were doing on the ground during the COVID-19 crisis.


While much of the focus of the last 18 months has been on how health crises – and particularly pandemics – impact on urban areas, the significance of politics should not be forgotten.