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date: 21 August 2018

Abstract and Keywords

This article examines the basis of the alarmist perspective on urbanization in less developed countries, particularly Asia. It begins by presenting an overview of the methods adopted by the Population Division of the United Nations in projecting urban population figures over the first five decades of this century. It then analyzes the myth of “southward shift” of the epicenter of urbanization and that of urban explosion in Asia. A similar analysis has been undertaken across the countries within the regions of Asia as well. Furthermore, it reviews the growth of urban centers in different size categories, the shift of growth dynamics from large metros to second order cities, and the stagnation of small and medium-sized towns in Asia in the context of their implications for balanced regional development. Finally, it examines policies and programs at the national and regional levels, summarizing the major findings of the study.

Keywords: urbanization, less developed countries, Asia, southward shift, urban explosion, balanced regional development

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