Intermediary Cities : the Nexus Between the Local and the Global

Brian Roberts, Borja M. Iglesias, Josep Maria Llop

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    This chapter addresses the issues, concerns, and opportunities that affect the development of intermediary cities, as an essential part of national and global systems of cities. Intermediary cities today are home to 20% of the world’s population and one third of the total urban population and play a major role in migration, administrative, economic and logistics processes. They link the population living in rural areas and small towns to the larger networks of primary and metropolitan cities. There are four typologies of intermediary cities: provincial, metropolitan clusters, corridors and networked intermediary cities. The chapter investigates in detail the concept of intermediary cities through analysis of their main facets. This includes: their scale, functions, location and connectivity; the distinctive governance and financial architecture they have developed to preserve their role in national urban systems; the role of urban planning and design to promote and protect their sustainability; the specific role they play in local economic development, with a focus on the rural-urban linkages they help foster; and the potential benefits they can reap from investment in identity, technology, and equality. The chapter examines intermediary cities in the different regional contexts across the world and draws a series of conclusions, recommendations and key messages for intermediary cities, and how they can actively contribute to today’s global development and urban agendas, with a special focus on the UN Habitat New Urban and 2030 SDG agendas.
    Original languageEnglish
    Place of PublicationSpain
    PublisherUnited Cities
    Number of pages91
    Publication statusPublished - Oct 2016


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