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GEOP2040 – Geographies of Development

2020 – Session 1, Fully online/virtual

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update

Due to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, any references to assessment tasks and on-campus delivery may no longer be up-to-date on this page.

Students should consult iLearn for revised unit information.

Find out more about the Coronavirus (COVID-19) and potential impacts on staff and students

General Information

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Unit convenor and teaching staff Unit convenor and teaching staff
Kate Lloyd
Credit points Credit points
Prerequisites Prerequisites
40cp at 1000 level or above
Corequisites Corequisites
Co-badged status Co-badged status
Unit description Unit description

This unit provides a geographical perspective on development issues facing cities of the global South. A series of case studies are drawn upon, particularly from the Asia Pacific region, to highlight key social, economic, political and environmental issues, how they are being addressed and hopeful ways forward. The unit is structured around five themes, each providing a different viewpoint on cities and development. First, the unit introduces the concept of the global South and key urban development theories. It then explores how shared histories of colonialism and post-colonial development have shaped cities in the global South. Section three explores life in the city, looking at how people make a living, housing challenges, informality, mobility, and inequality. Section four concentrates upon environmental issues, the sustainable development goals, and how cities are entangled in processes of social and ecological change. Finally the unit reviews a range of policy interventions and considers the role of different actors in responding to development challenges and pursuing more just and resilient urban futures. Throughout the unit students will have the opportunity to focus in on a particular city of their choice and develop a deep understanding its past, present and future.

Important Academic Dates

Information about important academic dates including deadlines for withdrawing from units are available at https://students.mq.edu.au/important-dates

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this unit, you will be able to:

  • ULO1: Investigate development issues in cities of the global South by synthesising information from a variety of written sources
  • ULO2: Critically assess the concept of development and the 'global South'
  • ULO3: Identify common social, economic, political and environmental issues facing cities in the global South.
  • ULO4: Describe and explain key initiatives oriented at improving urban life in the global South
  • ULO5: Discuss development issues facing cities in the global South in a variety of spoken and written forms

Assessment Tasks

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update

Assessment details are no longer provided here as a result of changes due to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

Students should consult iLearn for revised unit information.

Find out more about the Coronavirus (COVID-19) and potential impacts on staff and students

General Assessment Information

Assignment requirements and submission

Detailed requirements and marking rubrics for each assessment are available from the iLearn site. All written assignments should be submitted online to Turnitin via the relevant links provided in iLearn. You are not required to submit a hardcopy of any assignments or include a cover sheet.

Assessment extensions and late penalties

Circumstances that affect your ability to complete assignments by the deadline must be discussed with the convenor prior to the due date. Extensions will be granted only in unforeseen or exceptional circumstances according to the University Special Consideration policy. Students must apply online via AskMQ and provide appropriate supporting documentation (e.g. medical certificate).

Unless a Special Consideration request has been submitted and approved, (a) a penalty for lateness will apply – two (2) marks out of 100 will be deducted per day for assignments submitted after the due date – and (b) no assignment will be accepted more than seven (7) days (incl. weekends) after the original submission deadline. 

Assessment feedback

All feedback for assignments will be made available online. The grade will be in the form of a letter as consistent with University policy (HD, D, Cr, P, F) alongside written feedback

Delivery and Resources

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update

Any references to on-campus delivery below may no longer be relevant due to COVID-19.

Please check here for updated delivery information: https://ask.mq.edu.au/account/pub/display/unit_status


Weekly classes involve 2 hours of lectures and a 1 hour tutorial.

  • Lectures: Monday 1-3
  • Tutorials: Monday 3-4, 4-5

In weeks 4, 7 and 10 there will be team based learning assessments run in the lectures. External students will be given an equivalent online task and details will be provided on iLearn.


Required reading (journal articles and chapters) will be listed on iLearn and available via Leganto.

Technology used and required

All enrolled students have access to the GEOP2040 website via iLearn. iLearn will provide access to lectures (powerpoint presentations for download and recordings through the University's Echo360 lecture recording facility) as well as readings, links and forum discussions. Regular access to iLearn is required in order to complete the unit.

Unit Schedule

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update

The unit schedule/topics and any references to on-campus delivery below may no longer be relevant due to COVID-19. Please consult iLearn for latest details, and check here for updated delivery information: https://ask.mq.edu.au/account/pub/display/unit_status


Lecture date








24th Feb

Introduction to Geographies of Development (KL)



2nd March

Imagining the South: Approaches to Development (KL)



9th March

Colonialism and the Changing World Order:  The 'colonial' city (KL)







16th March

Globalisation and cities of the Global South (KL)



23rd March

Social and Cultural Change (KL)



30th March

Ways of Living (KL)



6th April

Inequality in the Global South (KL)







27th April

Climate change, justice and developments (AM)



4th May

Urban environments (AM)



11th May

The Sustainable Development Goals (AM)







18th May

Development challenges and policy interventions (KL)


25th May

Development challenges and the state (KL)



1st June

Development challenges and local interventions (KL)

City Analysis

Teaching staff: KL= Kate Lloyd; AM Andrew McGregor

Policies and Procedures

Macquarie University policies and procedures are accessible from Policy Central (https://staff.mq.edu.au/work/strategy-planning-and-governance/university-policies-and-procedures/policy-central). Students should be aware of the following policies in particular with regard to Learning and Teaching:

Students seeking more policy resources can visit the Student Policy Gateway (https://students.mq.edu.au/support/study/student-policy-gateway). It is your one-stop-shop for the key policies you need to know about throughout your undergraduate student journey.

If you would like to see all the policies relevant to Learning and Teaching visit Policy Central (https://staff.mq.edu.au/work/strategy-planning-and-governance/university-policies-and-procedures/policy-central).

Student Code of Conduct

Macquarie University students have a responsibility to be familiar with the Student Code of Conduct: https://students.mq.edu.au/study/getting-started/student-conduct​


Results published on platform other than eStudent, (eg. iLearn, Coursera etc.) or released directly by your Unit Convenor, are not confirmed as they are subject to final approval by the University. Once approved, final results will be sent to your student email address and will be made available in eStudent. For more information visit ask.mq.edu.au or if you are a Global MBA student contact globalmba.support@mq.edu.au

Student Support

Macquarie University provides a range of support services for students. For details, visit http://students.mq.edu.au/support/

Learning Skills

Learning Skills (mq.edu.au/learningskills) provides academic writing resources and study strategies to help you improve your marks and take control of your study.

The Library provides online and face to face support to help you find and use relevant information resources. 

Student Enquiry Service

For all student enquiries, visit Student Connect at ask.mq.edu.au

If you are a Global MBA student contact globalmba.support@mq.edu.au

Equity Support

Students with a disability are encouraged to contact the Disability Service who can provide appropriate help with any issues that arise during their studies.

IT Help

For help with University computer systems and technology, visit http://www.mq.edu.au/about_us/offices_and_units/information_technology/help/

When using the University's IT, you must adhere to the Acceptable Use of IT Resources Policy. The policy applies to all who connect to the MQ network including students.