Redefining "Urban"

A New Way to Measure Metropolitan Areas

image of Redefining

This report compares urbanisation trends in OECD countries on the basis of a newly defined OECD methodology which enables cross-country comparison of the socio-econimic and environmental performance of metropolitan areas in OECD countries. The methodology is presented and results from its application to 27 OECD countries are discussed together with policy implication both on national growth and governance of cities. The report also includes three original papers that present the urbanisation dynamics and prospects in China and South Africa and the governance challenges resulting from the new policy agenda on cities in the United Kingdom.



Executive summary

Urbanisation is a dominant trend worldwide, affecting economies, societies, cultures and the environment. More than half the world’s population now lives in cities, and as much as two-thirds is expected to do so by 2050. The coming together of people, business and other activities in cities is a key process in the development and maturing of economies and societies. How urban systems function is crucial to future economic prosperity and a better quality of life for more than three billion people, and counting.


This is a required field
Please enter a valid email address
Approval was a Success
Invalid data
An Error Occurred
Approval was partially successful, following selected items could not be processed due to error