New edition of 'Rethink the City' course to be launched in 2018

Tuesday, 3 April 2018

From May 2018 the Delft Technical University (TU Delft, The Netherlands) will offer a new edition of its free online course, Rethink the City: New Approaches to Global and Local Urban Challenges.

In the course you will learn about today’s urban challenges, focusing on developing countries (referred to as the Global South). Participants will debate the benefits associated with three different themes, going beyond traditional urban strategies and policies:

  1. Spatial justice: Spatial justice is undoubtedly one of the greatest challenges of urban contexts in emerging economies.
  2. Housing Provision and Management: Increasing demand in the Global South calls for alternative approaches in housing provision and management.
  3. Urban Resilience: Understanding resilience not as a mere struggle for survival, but as an opportunity to build better urban environments.

The course will address questions such as:

  • Is the ‘just city’ framework applicable to cities with extreme socio-economic inequality?
  • Can community-led housing initiatives provide effective solutions for households in need?
  • How can resilience support development instead of perpetuating a disadvantaged condition?

In this architecture and urban planning course, academic urban planning expertise from TU Delft will be used to formulate possible answers to these questions, and will be applied in a range of challenging case studies from Ghana, Brazil, Malaysia, Chile, and China, among others. This course offers participants a new perspective to understand and analyze the urban challenges of the Global South.

Through a combination of short theoretical lessons, the presentation of case studies, testimonies from practitioners, and practical assignments, participants will also learn how to develop a critical perspective about their own urban environments, as well as how to translate this knowledge into analytical tools and innovative urban solutions.

Urban Challenges in Africa

In addition, the course will offer a module focused on the specific urban challenges of the African continent. We will apply the three themes to different cases in this region and explore these with professionals working on the ground.


Two learners will be selected to come to Delft to participate in the 2018 Summer School entitled ‘Planning and Design with Water’. This Rethink the City prize will cover the costs of the tuition fee for the summer school, the costs of board and lodging in Delft during the period of the summer school, and the travel costs to/from the Netherlands. The selection criteria for this prize will be communicated once the course starts.

What you will learn

  • Alternative theories in spatial justice, housing provision and management, and urban resilience.
  • Application of analytical tools and innovative solutions to contemporary urban challenges
  • Development of a critical perspective about your own urban environment.
  • New perspectives to understand and analyze the urban challenges of the Global South.

Further information

Access the official webpage of the course, where participants can enrol, here.

The TU Delft webpage for the course is available here.

Watch a short video teaser for the course below:

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