General information

Course type AMUPIE
Module title The Future Of Cities
Language English
Module lecturer Tomasz Kayser M.A., MBA
Lecturer's email
Lecturer position senior lecturer
Faculty Faculty of Law and Administration
Semester 2024/2025 (summer)
Duration 20
USOS code 10-FC-w-erasm


ten lectures - each lecture 90 minutes

Module aim (aims)

The aim of this module is to familiarize students with future city visions, roles, functions and the main opporrtunities and challenges facing cities where over 66 per cent of the world’s population will live by 2050. The students should understand better the possible impacts of various trends/factors such as  globalization, metropolization, internalization, digitalization, climate change, pandemic and aging. They should be able to analyze city functioning and development by combining  the economic, social, environmental, spatial and governance aspects   The course also provides information on current changes in city management aimed at ensuring better effectiveness and citizens engagement. It examines new sources of local economic development and the evolution of urban economy. The course helps to recognize  factors determining quality of life and the use of city space with the ambition to inspire students to contribute to making cities a better place to live.

Pre-requisites in terms of knowledge, skills and social competences (where relevant)



1. Learning content description


Urbanization – present situation and trends

Changing role of cities

Types of contemporary cities



Definitions and meanings of a city

The changing concepts of a city (from garden cities to smart cities)

Interpretations of future cities by different stakeholders



Process of globalization

The benefits and threats of globalization

Stages and strategies of global fluency


The emergence and the role of Functional Urban Areas

Urban sprawl

Integration, cooperation, delimitation and governance in metropolitan area

The role of core city and regional/national government\




Trends and challenges influencing future local governance

Collaborative management and citizens participation

Importance of social capital


Demographic challenges

Social cohesion, integration, aging society


Evolution of an urban economy

Local economic growth determinants

Sources of future cities competitiveness


Sustainable and resilient city development

Climate change

Qualities of resilient systems


Quality of Life concepts, choice of indicators and its impact on policy making


2. Assessment criteria

Academic essay on the subject “The best city to live” – 100%

The essay should be based on the knowledge the students acquire during the lectures combined with individual preferences and include the description of the ideal city of the future the student would feel comfortable to spent his life in (subjective approach)

Deadline – the last day of classes in the semester

 Essential elements required for all essays:

  1. Relevance: it directly answers the question
  2. Understanding of the topic
  3. Evidence of the use of appropriate material (e.g. books, journal articles, etc.)
  4. Organisation of material into a coherent structure: introduction, argument and evidence, conclusion
  5. Clear style, including accurate spelling, clear sentence construction and punctuation
  6. References
  7. Bibliography
  8. Use of own words, except where directly quoting from another source
  9. Language: avoidance of inappropriate slang, racist or sexist language
  10. 8 standard pages (1800 characters per page) excluding references and bibliography

 The following features are deemed to be evidence of quality

  1. Evaluation and analysis of a wide range of material and sources
  2. Broad description of an ideal city including different perspectives (social, economic, spatial, environmental, managerial)
  3. Ability to understand and to discuss critically abstract ideas, theories and concepts
  4. Argument - well formulated, substantiated, and with evidence of critical, independent, and personal thought


Excellent (5,0)  – an Excellent essay will typically demonstrate excellence in the following: accurate integration of a wide range of material and resources, high level of critical analysis and independent judgement, quality of arguments in response to the questions, wide range of sources fully and accurately identified, originality of exposition or treatment in addition to incorporating all of the elements required of all essays (above)

Good (4,5; 4,0) -  there will be good use of some of the features of the Excellent essay, although several elements will be only partially realised. Thus, for example, a typical Good essay will display some independent thought (e.g. through the use of original examples), but may have uneven coverage of relevant issues, with some explored in more detail than others, may lack sustained conceptual analysis, tending to accept uncritically the principal arguments in an area. It will include most of the elements required of all essays, but not all - for example, there may be some confusion in the use of terms, the referencing may be inaccurate or inconsistent, there may be use of inappropriate language

Satisfactory (3,0; 3,5) - there will be a satisfactory use of a limited number of the features outlined for the Excellent essay, but significant elements will be underdeveloped. Thus, for example, a typical Satisfactory essay may display little evidence of independent thought and critical judgement, include a partial and rather superficial coverage of the key issues, lack critical analysis. While some of the elements required of all essays are present, they are not necessarily adequate. The essay may display, for example, a satisfactory grasp of the topic, be relevant to the question, but it may be poorly structured, it may include some waffle (i.e. deploying lots of words without meaning very much), the language may lapse into colloquialism, references may be inadequate and inaccurate.

Unsatisfactory (2,0) - there will be an inadequate use of a significant number of the features outlined for the Excellent essay. A typical Unsatisfactory essay may be characterized by the following: major inaccuracies and omissions, offers unsubstantiated opinion, demonstrates no evidence of critical judgement,  may be badly written, there may be no references, there may be little evidence of reading

Reading list

World Cities Report 2022, Evisaging the Future of Cities, UN HABITAT

summary -


Cities in the World. A New Perspective on Urbanisation. OECD Urban Studies, 2020


OECD Principles on Urban Policy, OECD 2019


The Future of Cities

European Union 2019


Cities of tomorrow. Challenges, visions, ways forward.

European Commission, Directorate General for Regional Policy

European Union 2011


What are future cities? Origins, meanings and uses.

Compiled by The Business of Cities for the Foresight Future of Cities Project and the Future Cities Catapult

Emily Moir, Tim Moonen, Greg Clark June 2014


The New Leipzig Charter, 2020


 World Urbanization Prospects. The latest edition


Urban Agenda for the EU. Pact of Amsterdam.


New Urban Agenda – HABITAT III


current literature – info will be provided by the lecturer during the classes