FULL Lecture | Coping with Crisis in Developmental Urbanization | Hyung Bang Shin

FULL Lecture

09.07.19, h. 17:30-19:00 @sala Caccia

Discussant: Francesca Governa e Andrea Pollio

Chair: Francesca Frassoldati

FULL is pleased to announce the lecture “: Coping with Crisis in Developmental Urbanization: The Case of Songdo City, South Korea” of prof. Hyun Bang Shin, a geographer at London School of Economics.

The lecture is co-hosted by the doctoral programmes in Urban Regional Development and Architecture, History, and Project, in collaboration with China Room.

09 July 2019

Coping with Crisis in Developmental Urbanization: The Case of Songdo City, South Korea 


Sala della Caccia, Castello del Valentino


This lecture aims to examine the underlying political economy of mega-project promotion in times of post-crisis recovery, looking at the case study of Songdo International City in Incheon, South Korea. This mega-scale urban development project, built on a 5,345-hectare reclaimed land, is widely known as the first foreign-led urban development project in South Korea. However, Songdo needs to be understood as space where various domestic and foreign actors have interplayed to pursue their material goals at different stages of development. In particular, two economic crises, which affected Korea in 1997 and 2008, were acting as significant drivers of development, producing shifting relations between different actors. By investigating the consequences of two crises upon Songdo, this chapter will show (1) how the variegated nature of urbanisation and associated stakeholders have engaged in an urban mega-project, (2) how their dynamics have shifted, and how speculative interests of different scales have become dominant in the development process of Songdo International City.

Short bio of Professor Shin

Prof Hyun Bang Shin is Professor of Geography and Urban Studies in the Department of Geography and Environment at the London School of Economics and Political Science. He is also the Director of LSE Saw Swee Hock Southeast Asia Centre. Prof Shin’s research centres on the critical analysis of the political economy of urbanisation with particular attention to cities in Asian countries such as Vietnam, Singapore, South Korea and China. Prof Shin has published widely in major international journals and contributed to numerous books on the above themes. His most recent books include Planetary Gentrification (Polity Press, 2016), Global Gentrifications: Uneven Development and Displacement (Policy Press, 2015), and Neoliberal Urbanism, Contested Cities and Housing in Asia (Palgrave Macmillan, 2019). Other forthcoming books include The Political Economy of Mega Projects in Asia (Routledge) and Making China Urban (Routledge).