Private cities: outstanding examples from Developing Countries and their implications for urban policy

Institutional constraints and weak capacity often hamper the ability of local governments in developing countries to steer urbanization. As a result, there are not enough cities to accommodate an unabated rural-urban migration and many of those that exist are messy, sprawling, and disconnected. The flipside is the emergence of entire cities—more than gated communities or industrial parks—led in whole or in part by private actors. To date, little systematic research has been conducted on the conditions that are necessary for such unusual entities to emerge, on the roles played by private actors, or on the consequences for efficiency and equity. Private Cities: Outstanding Examples from Developing Countries and Their Implications for Urban Policy aims to fill this gap. Using an analytical framework that draws on urban economics and political science, it includes inventories of private cities in the Arab Republic of Egypt, India, Indonesia, and Pakistan and provides structured reviews of 14 outstanding examples across all developing regions.