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Course Description

More than ever, cities represent the locus of human mobility. The majority of the world’s migrants and forcibly displaced live in urban areas. Migration continues to be a fundamental process to the development and growth of cities. The role of cities in shaping mobility and that of migrants in shaping cities has been increasingly recognized in policy, academic, and media circles. However, understanding this dialectic relationship requires us to look beyond disciplinary silos, challenge past assumptions, revisit theoretical concepts, and provide new evidence from cities the world over.

The purpose of the course is to offer an interdisciplinary lens on the topic of cities, migration, and mobility. By closely examining city and migrant experiences across the world, students will focus on different aspects of migration, urban governance, contentious politics, and migrant city-making. Throughout the course, students will gain theoretical insights, and analytical skills to be applied in different urban and mobility contexts. The course will bring together scholars, practitioners, and activists from across disciplines to share insights, advance conceptual and empirical findings, and discuss actions that can provide a more holistic view of human mobility in cities today.

Learner Outcomes

  • Gain a familiarity with the history of urbanization as a human mobility process
  • Develop an understanding of the role of migration in the growth and development of cities
  • Understand the role of cities as migration gateways
  • Practice reading and interpreting basic statistics as it relates to contemporary migration trends in urban areas
  • Demonstrate an ability to problematize basic assimilation models
  • Develop an appreciation and respect for the culture and diverse life experiences that immigrants bring to cities

Applies Towards the Following Certificates

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