NIGK13018U Rural-Urban Connections the Global South

Volume 2013/2014
MSc Programme in Geography and Geoinformatics

This course provides advanced understanding of current debates in how urbanization, urban-rural connections and mobility are conceptualized, studied and analyzed, and how this influences on possible and actual policy choices. The course outlines urbanization and counter-urbanization trends in the Global South, discusses small town growth, urban hierarchies and how households livelihood strategies straddle urban and rural spheres. It proceeds by discussing environmental impacts of urbanization and the policy and planning challenge by discussing service delivery and poverty reduction strategies. The course finishes by summarizing the plethora of research methods that can be utilized when collecting primary data and analyzing secondary data. The course will draw on case studies from across the Global South.

Learning Outcome

Students will acquire knowledge about:


  • Current debates about urbanization in the Global South, including urban livelihoods, urban-rural linkages, the urban hierarchy, environmental consequences of urbanization, and urban policy and planning challenges.
  • Empirical aspects of urban livelihoods, including multi-locality, informal economy, poverty and slums.
  • Research methods that can be utilized when collecting primary data and analysing secondary data.


Students will acquire skills to:

  • Identify key processes and challenges in urbanization in the Global South
  • Assess the potential impact of global, national and local policies on urban livelihoods
  • Identify relevant theories and monitoring tools for analyses of urbanization in the Global South
  • Sequence a variety of research methods for the assessment of urban livelihoods, including both quantitative and qualitative tools.
  • Use appropriate statistical techniques to measure urbanization, population change and poverty.
  • Structure, write and defend an 8,000 word essay


Students will acquire competences to:

Analyze, assess and apply results, methods, theory and data in connection with urbanization in the global south

Please see Absalon course page
BSc in Geography and Geoinformatics or equivalent
The form of teaching and work will be class teaching with active participation of students by means of student presentations and group-work.
  • Category
  • Hours
  • Preparation
  • 136
  • Project work
  • 35
  • Theory exercises
  • 35
  • Total
  • 206
7,5 ECTS
Type of assessment
Oral examination, 20 minutes
Written assignment
The written assignment is prepared during the course and must be handed in prior to the exam week. The oral exam uses the written assignment as its point of departure. It includes the titles listed in the officially approved reading list.
All aids allowed
Marking scale
7-point grading scale
Censorship form
No external censorship
Several internal examiners
Criteria for exam assesment
Please see learning outcomes