Saskia Sassen's De-Urbanisation Theory

9 Pages Posted: 21 Jun 2017 Last revised: 27 Nov 2017

Date Written: June 20, 2017


In 2015 Saskia Sassen published an article in ‘The Guardian’ pointing on the direct relationship between the implementation of large – or gigantic – urban regeneration projects and the de-urbanisation of city. This lecture note questions the empirical relevance of discussing the dynamics of cities’ degree of ‘urbanity’ under the caeteris paribus assumption. The local effects of an urban regeneration project may be very strong – and very negative – yet its effects on the neighbourhood or on the entire city may be negligible when compared with the effects of other structural changes taking place in the city in the same span of time. Urbanity is a category that acquires a meaning for a territory that has a ‘functional dimension’.

Keywords: Saskia Sassen, urban regeneration projects, cities, de-urbanisation

JEL Classification: A11, A12, R12

Suggested Citation

Calafati, Antonio, Saskia Sassen's De-Urbanisation Theory (June 20, 2017). Available at SSRN: or

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