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 christine.ro@iied.org

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

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In a globalized world that is increasingly urban, cities are viewed as being more able to respond to local needs and wants, and better positioned to find local solutions and develop more sustainable futures (page 8). It is within this context that the directly elected mayoral model is promoted.


Writing a history of smell is a novel means of exploring changing notions of urban environmental justice and public health. One potent example from Smell Detectives is the common belief in 19th-century America that foul smells were signs of miasma, or a bad air that caused disease.


Around 1 billion people live in informal settlements across the global South. This demonstrates a need to rethink how urban development is structured, in order to create an investment environment that delivers more inclusive and prosperous cities.


After natural disasters, governments often relocate vulnerable urban communities in the name of humanitarian relief. But urban communities rarely welcome such relocation, since it frequently exacerbates their daily challenges or creates new risks.


Using data generated from 29 focus groups with 186 closed-file and rejected asylum seekers residing in Cairo, as well as interviews with community leaders and service providers, this report explores their livelihood experiences by focusing on their socio-economic conditions and protection challen


Cities around the world vary in form, which greatly affects their performance in economic, social, and environmental terms. In most developed nations, compact urban form is being promoted and density and accessibility are seen to generate urban externalities that align with sustainability goals.


As we face pressing and difficult challenges generated from environmental changes, Risk, Resilience, Inequality and Environmental Law examines the ability of environmental law in the 21st century to manage transnational risks, and its compatibility with major environmental management str


“Almost 3 billion people are deprived of at least one basic human need: lack of access to food, drinking water, shelter, basic health services” and “some 19,000 children will die today of easily preventable causes” (page 2).


While environmental damage has in the past been accepted as an unfortunate but necessary victim of capitalism and urbanization, in Regreening the Built Environment Michael A Richards advocates a paradigm shift.


Though Detroit was once the iconic “Worst City of America”, since 2009 Americans have started to celebrate the possibility of the city’s resurgence.