Urban is defined as "that which is characteristic of a city."
Urbanisation can cause problems such as transport congestion, lack of sufficient housing, over-rapid growth and environmental degradation. Many cities display particularly sharp inequalities in housing provision, health and employment.
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Fertility rates. Initially, the societal shift from rural to urban alters rates of natural population increase. There are no recorded examples of where this has not been true.
Families and living arrangements. The evolution to an urban society is also frequently equated with a decline in the status of the family, and with a proliferation of nontraditional family forms and new types of households. By nontraditional we mean those families without two parents and/or without children.
Links to labor markets. This diversity in living arrangements and family composition in urban societies is also closely linked to shifts in the world of work—in the urban economy and in occupations. Not only does urbanization involve obvious changes in employment and working life, it alters the relationships between households (the collective units of consumption) and labor markets (the production sector).
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Cities have existed for thousands of years and can be traced back to the river valley civilizations of Mesopotamia (present-day Iraq), Egypt, India, and China. At first, these settlements depended largely on agriculture and domestic cattle, but as they grew in size they became centers for merchants and traders.
Urban growth, also known as urbanization, accelerated dramatically with the advent of industrialization some 200 years ago.
NATGEO article on Urban
The World Health Organization had chosen the theme of “urbanization and health” for World Health Day, on 7 April 2010.
Health challenges particularly evident in cities relate to water, environment, violence and injury, noncommunicable diseases (cardiovascular diseases, cancers, diabetes and chronic respiratory diseases), unhealthy diets and physical inactivity, harmful use of alcohol as well as the risks associated with disease outbreaks.
From the Health Bulletin of WHO
Whenever and wherever societies have flourished and prospered rather than stagnated and decayed, creative and workable cities have been at the core of the phenomenon; they have pulled their weight and more. It is the same still.
Shenzhen in south-east China between 1988 and 2009