Course Name

Learning by Comparison: First World/Third World Cities


  • General



A building at a university that has trees planted on the roof.

Contemporary low-energy and ecologically-sensitive campus in New Dehli, India. (Image courtesy of Aseem Inam.)


Dr. Aseem Inam

MIT Course Number


As Taught In

Fall 2008



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Course Features

Course Description

The primary purpose of this seminar is to enable students to craft approaches to so-called "First World"/ "Third World" city comparisons that are theoretically sophisticated, methodologically rigorous, contextually grounded, and significantly beneficial. Since there exists very little literature and very few projects which compare "First World" and "Third World" cities in a sophisticated and genuinely useful manner, the seminar is structured around a series of readings, case studies, and discussions to assist students in becoming mindful of the potential and pitfalls of comparative analysis, the types of data, the methods of analysis, and the urban issues or sectors which may benefit the most from such approaches. The course is designed to be interdisciplinary and interactive, and is geared towards masters and doctoral students.


2 sections 6 items