Sustainable Urban Futures (10) URBAN5116

  • Academic Session: 2023-24
  • School: School of Social and Political Sciences
  • Credits: 10
  • Level: Level 5 (SCQF level 11)
  • Typically Offered: Semester 1
  • Available to Visiting Students: Yes

Short Description

This course explores the complex interaction of physical, social, environmental and economic factors within urban systems, and the emerging use of data systems, technology and analytical techniques as ways to provide better understanding and solutions to the challenges faced by cities.


Classes to run in Semester 1 and delivered in 3 hourly blocks, once per week, over 5 consecutive weeks with a tutorial.

Requirements of Entry

Mandatory Entry Requirements:


Excluded Courses






Written essay (maximum of 2,500 words) requiring students to address a contemporary environmental, urban management, transportation, health or quality of living issue and/or examine a major urban strategy or intervention from the perspectives of the themes of the course.

Course Aims

The aim of this courses are to:

■ examine cities as dynamic spaces and look at the social, environmental, economic and physical factors that shape how cities operate and are managed.

■ understand urban change and the challenges faced by cities in different regions of the world;

■ develop an understanding of the policy frameworks and initiatives in place to facilitate the creation of more adaptive, resilient and sustainable cities; and

■ investigate the role of innovation and technology in improving our understand of urban systems and how they are managed.

Intended Learning Outcomes of Course

By the end of this course students will be able to:

■ critically examine cities and their development as dynamic spaces and understand the implications of theories put forward within urban policy, spatial planning and urban management;

■ critical examine the relationships between social, economic and environmental factors (including climate change) within urban and regional planning, property development and urban policy;

■ understand the relevance of the UN's sustainable development goals and critically evaluate the impact of these goals on policy, business, spatial planning and professional practice;

■ critically evaluate environmental sustainability as a concept, with particular relevance to the demands and pressures cities place on the natural environment in different regions; and

■ critically appraisal of the emerging role of big data and urban analytics for urban policy and government.

Minimum Requirement for Award of Credits

Students must submit at least 75% by weight of the components (including examinations) of the course's summative assessment.


Minimum requirement for award of credit for students on MSc City Planning, MSc City Planning & Real estate Development, MSc International Real Estate & Management and MSc Real Estate is D3 or above.


University standard regulations apply to students on other qualifications although attendance is a requirement of students on PG Dip/MSc Housing Studies.