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Monash University

Monash University Handbook 2010 Undergraduate - Unit

6 points, SCA Band 1, 0.125 EFTSL

FacultyFaculty of Arts
OfferedClayton Winter semester 2010 (Flexible)
South Africa Winter semester 2010 (Flexible)
Coordinator(s)Ashley Gunter


Field Studies in Urban Sustainability is a field studies unit that looks at the challenges facing African cities. The unit will explore the complex dynamics found in African cities, and the role of sustainable development in poverty alleviation. This unit analyses African urban development through participation in community development and sustainable practice. It will examine how development practitioners and planners apply their theoretical discourse and international best practice in real world applications, by embarking on daily field excursions in the fastest growing metropolis in Africa: Johannesburg - Pretoria City Region.


Upon successful completion of this unit, students should be able to demonstrate knowledge of and familiarity with the following types of information, academic perspectives and skills:

  1. Knowledge of the varied social and resource dimensions of problems associated with urban sustainability
  2. Ability to, describe, and interpret the concept of urban sustainability in the context of a developing country
  3. Acquisition of practical skills and field-based experience for research and policy formulation for sustainable regional development
  4. Demonstration of an awareness and understanding of the major theoretical approaches in urban geography within academic debate in Africa and internationally
  5. Ability to employ those and evaluate such theoretical approaches in an interpretation of the various urban scenarios in this unit
  6. Intellectual familiarity with the different critical concepts relevant to the unit: displacement, urbanism, apartheid planning, post-modern urban planning, cosmopolitanism, globalization, urban cultures, migration, poverty elevation, authenticity, ethnicity, hybridity, new urbanism and so on
  7. Gain an understanding of practical implications of theoretical discourse in urban planning Develop an understanding of Africa and how it relates to the world or how the world relates to it.


Field studies journal (2000 words): 35%
Long essay (3000 words): 45%
Oral presentation : 20%

Chief examiner(s)

Ashley Gunther

Contact hours

80 Hours over 2 weeks

This unit applies to the following area(s) of study

Geography and environmental science (ARTS)


12 points in GES (Only students who have a minimum of a C (credit) average across all GES units they have taken will be permitted to enroll.)