ENVPL101-21B (HAM)

Future Cities

15 Points

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Division of Arts Law Psychology & Social Sciences
School of Social Sciences
Environmental Planning


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: frances.douch@waikato.ac.nz

Placement/WIL Coordinator(s)


Student Representative(s)

Lab Technician(s)


: melanie.chivers@waikato.ac.nz

You can contact staff by:

  • Calling +64 7 838 4466 select option 1, then enter the extension.
  • Extensions starting with 4, 5, 9 or 3 can also be direct dialled:
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Paper Description

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Urban areas are under increased pressure from population growth, development, natural hazards and climate change. These pressures are set to continue into the future, if not to accentuate, and pose considerable challenges for both planning new urban areas and retrofitting existing ones. This paper focuses on these challenges whilst providing a broad introduction and underpinning knowledge emphasising the scope, complexity and integrated nature of environmental planning in the Aotearoa-New Zealand context and elsewhere. The paper analysis a differing environmental planning problem each week, discusses the reasons for its existence, the pressures it creates, the approaches to addressing it, and the future trends. For example, one week may discuss climate change impacts on cities, a following may discuss cities' colonisation legacies, while another focuses on urban sprawl and food security. These issues are however, interconnected, and by the end of the paper students will better understand the complexity of environmental planning. This broad approach highlights the wide scope of planning influences, that will be designed to complement more focused and deep study of planning issues in later years and foster a more contextual understanding of the integrated nature of future interventions to address critical planning challenges.
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Paper Structure

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The paper will have a hybrid model of taught delivery involving Moodle-based readings, the completion of online lessons, along with on-campus / online lectures, on-campus workshops, and tutorial sessions where you will have the chance to ask questions and get clarification about weekly topics.
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Learning Outcomes

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Students who successfully complete the paper should be able to:

  • 1. Identify and discuss differing perspectives on the pressures on global cities
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  • 2. Identify and explain the ways that urban areas fulfil various functions
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  • 2. Demonstrate understanding of contemporary urban debates
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  • 4. Discuss, in the context of contemporary urban discourse, the contested nature of future cities
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  • 5. Demonstrate awareness of how environmental planning can better manage future cities
    Linked to the following assessments:
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Moodle-based Lessons

Five lessons will be distributed throughout the trimester and must be completed in sequence, with one due for each two learning weeks. They are designed to complement the fortnightly learning and to assist in the completion of workshops. Students will have time allocated within the lecture times timetabled to complete lessons but additional time may be required during workshop weeks. Moodle-based lessons must be submitted electronically through Moodle. They are worth 15% of total marks (3 points per lesson).

Group Workshops

Five workshops will occur throughout the trimester and synchronously completed in groups of up to 4 students. The workshops are designed to cover material covered in lectures and Moodle-based lessons, as well as content contained in the recommended reading list. Workshops will involve the application of a block of learning / topic to a hypothetical greenfield or brownfield development in Kirikiriroa-Hamilton, and provide an introduction to urban design/spatial planning. The workshops will be held during Friday lecture times and handed in at the end of each workshop. The workshops are worth 25% of total marks (5 points per workshop).

Learning Journal

Five learning journal entries must be completed in sequence every two weeks throughout the trimester. This is a reflective individual assessment that documents student's fortnightly learning about each environmental planning problem discussed throughout the paper. Each journal entry should be based on at least one reading from the reading list, relevant to the topic(s) covered over the fortnight. The purpose of the learning journal is to enable students to reflect upon the problems discussed in lectures and reading list material, and to write a concise summary of their learning related to the topics. The word limit is 300 words for each learning journal entry. Material in excess of the 300 word limit per entry will not be marked.

Learning journal entries must be submitted electronically through Moodle. They are worth 15% of total marks (3 points per entry).

City Profile

The City Profile is a group assessment (minimum of 3 and maximum of 5 students per group) that documents how different cities (nationally and internationally) are tackling environmental planning problems discussed throughout the paper. The City Profile is to be presented in the format of an A4 size brochure (or some other appropriate brochure-based display type) containing info-graphics that summarise the group's research. The purpose of the City Profile is to enable students to work together to investigate how different cities are currently dealing with each of the problems discussed each week, and to create a visually-rich presentation of their findings. The word limit is 2000 words. Material in excess of the 2000 word limit will not be marked.

The completed City Profile must be submitted electronically through Moodle. It is worth 15% of total marks.


The test is worth 30% of student's total marks and is held at the conclusion of the course during the exam period. The date of the test will be advised at a later date. The test will consist of a mix of short and long answer questions.

Long answers will be assessed according to how well they:

  • address the question which was asked;
  • involve sound reasoning, and relevant supporting evidence;
  • give examples that are relevant and show student's understand of the question;
  • have a clear and logical structure (e.g. it should progress logically from introduction, to main body, and conclusion, with the linkages between parts of the argument clearly shown);
  • use concepts correctly; and,
  • show legible writing, correct spelling, grammar, & punctuation.

A lecture in the last week of the course will be a revision session to prepare for the final test.

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Assessment Components

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The internal assessment/exam ratio (as stated in the University Calendar) is 70:30. There is no final exam. The final exam makes up 30% of the overall mark.

The internal assessment/exam ratio (as stated in the University Calendar) is 70:30 or 0:0, whichever is more favourable for the student. The final exam makes up either 30% or 0% of the overall mark.

Component DescriptionDue Date TimePercentage of overall markSubmission MethodCompulsory
1. Moodle-based Lessons (x 5)
  • Online: Submit through Moodle
2. Group workshops (x 5)
  • Hand-in: In Lecture
3. Learning Journal entries (x 5)
  • Online: Submit through Moodle
4. City Profile - group project
15 Oct 2021
5:00 PM
  • Online: Submit through Moodle
5. Exam
Assessment Total:     100    
Failing to complete a compulsory assessment component of a paper will result in an IC grade
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Required and Recommended Readings

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Required Readings

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1. Course Readings List on Moodle and on course readings list via Library.
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Recommended Readings

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Further recommended reading will be advised during semester.
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Online Support

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This paper is supported through Moodle http://elearn.waikato.ac.nz/.

Important information about the paper will be provided to students via Moodle. Lecture notes will be posted prior to online lectures. Student's grades will also be accessible through Moodle once work has been assessed.

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The work for this course involves completing Moddle-based readings and lessons and participating in workshops. Expected workload for the paper is an average of about 9-10 hours per week.
Carolyn Hill is the course convenor of the paper and will be available to answer course queries. Students having difficulty with completing their assignments on time or understanding lectures, should seek an appointment with the course convenor.
All lecture material will be available on Moodle.

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