The Long Term State Level Benefits of Third World Urbanization

Posted: 29 Mar 2010  

Nathan Vasher

affiliation not provided to SSRN


Over the past thirty years urban populations have skyrocketed to historic proportions. Scholars have stated that urbanization leads to daunting challenges to urban housing, sanitation, education, and transportation needs. Furthermore, governments, both local and national, must respond with a plan to provide city dwellers with needed jobs while also protecting them from crime. While many scholars have examined the plight of those who migrate to cities, this paper will focus on the effects of urbanization on the state as a whole. This study focuses on four relatively politically stable countries - Ghana, South Africa, Bolivia, and India. It empirically compares the four countries’ urban population growth from 1975-2005 to various development statistics from the three overarching development categories - Social, Political and Economic - over the same period. It is important not to marginalize the plight of the urban poor throughout the third world; however, this paper concludes that urbanization benefits the country as a whole and that the negative effects of urbanization are merely growing pains that will pass.

Suggested Citation

Vasher, Nathan, The Long Term State Level Benefits of Third World Urbanization. Western Political Science Association 2010 Annual Meeting Paper . Available at SSRN:

Nathan Vasher (Contact Author)

affiliation not provided to SSRN ( email )

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