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Library Understanding India’s Urban Frontier

Understanding India’s Urban Frontier

Understanding India’s Urban Frontier

Resource information

Date of publication
October 2015
Resource Language
ISBN / Resource ID

According to the latest census of 2011,
the urbanization level in India has increased from 27.8
percent in 2001 to 31.2 percent in 2011, and for the first
time, the absolute increase in urban population exceeded the
increase in rural population. India has different
administrative arrangements for rural and urban areas, which
are based on the 73rd and 74th amendments to the
Constitution of India respectively. Since the census towns
(CTs) continue to be governed by rural administrative
arrangements this situation raises an additional set of
questions, in addition to the nature of economic
transformation, related to the trade-offs-between rural and
urban status. The report shall try and find answers to the
following questions: (a) how does their governance affect
the settlements economically and spatially?; (b) what
underpins the economic dynamics of these settlements?; and
(c) what are the drivers of change in land use and what
relationships, if any, are there between agglomeration of
settlements and economic and social and governance
processes? The report is organized into two main parts. The
first part provides a reading of the existing literature on
small towns along the three main axis of research:
governance, employment, and spatial change. It also provides
a detailed rationale for the choice of sites and expands on
the methodology chosen. The second part constitutes of four
sections: (i) the first considers the CT as a liminal
notion, enabling to unpack ones reading of urbanization;
(ii) the second is concerned with the shift towards non-farm
employment, the reality (or not) of sectoral differentiation
in CTs, and the analysis of the new types of jobs existing
in the towns; (iii) the third is concerned with the existing
debates and practices around the idea that some CTs should
become statutory towns; and (iv) the fourth looks at the
various urban services and attempts to assess which
variations (rural and urban; state) explain differences in services.

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