Global Suburbanisms




About the Series:

Urbanization is at the core of the global economy today. Yet, crucially, suburbanization now dominates 21st century urban development. Suburbanization is defined as an increase in non-central city population and economic activity, as well as urban spatial expansion. It includes all manner of peripheral growth: from the wealthy gated communities of Southern California, to the high rise-dominated suburbs of Europe and Canada, the exploding outskirts of Indian and Chinese cities, and the slums and squatter settlements in Africa and Latin America. In the current period, environmental issues are occurring more and more in cities where economic and urban development is taking place in connection with suburbanization processes. The related term Suburbanisms refers to the growing prevalence of qualitatively distinct ‘suburban ways of life’.


Global Suburbanisms is the first major scholarly series to systematically take stock of worldwide developments in suburbanization and suburbanisms today. The series’ objectives are threefold: (1) To document and evaluate the diversity of global suburbanisms in their various contexts; (2) To participate in an ongoing effort by researchers around the world to encourage a truly global sub/urban studies devoid of traditional dichotomies such as world city/ordinary city, North/South or developed/developing; (3) To use our wide-ranging empirical data and analysis on suburbanization and suburbanisms to intervene in urban theory. Drawing on methodological and analytical approaches from political economy, urban political ecology, and social and cultural geography, the series seeks to contribute to better grasping the complex processes of suburbanization as they pose challenges to policymakers, planners, and academics alike. The series will be an outlet for research in foundational, thematic and geographical projects and case studies. The series is linked to a Major Collaborative Research Initiative by the same name ( The MCRI is centred at the City Institute at York University but has 50 co-investigators around the globe. Researchers in the MCRI analyze recent forms of urbanization and emerging forms of (sub)urbanism as well as the dilemmas of aging suburbanity. The initiative broadly focuses on the governance of suburbanization, that is, efforts to guide and regulate its development. It involves state, market and civil society actors and implies democratic deliberation and social conflict. In addition, the categories land, which includes housing, shelter systems, real estate, greenbelts, megaprojects, and infrastructure, including transportation, water and social services, function as the two prime anchors upon which specific empirical research projects are hinged. Examination of Canadian suburbanization and suburbanism serves as the starting point of wide ranging comparative studies of suburbanization in the Americas, Australia, Europe, Africa and Asia.

Brief Description:

This will be the first series of its kind. While there are many series in critical urban studies, none are specifically designed to be a home for suburban research. This series will be of great interest to suburban researchers around the world, an explosively growing field of research. (1) The series seeks manuscripts and proposals from all manner of scholarship on suburbanization. These could be innovative critical PhD theses but also independent work by more senior scholars. (2) The series seeks HAMELKEIL rough2monographs on particular case studies as long as they have a comparative aspect to them. (3) While this is an English language series, the editors are keenly interested in work from other cultural and linguistic backgrounds in order to broaden the intellectual and empirical base of global suburban research. The series will be interested to attracting monographs as well as edited collections. While we are seeking a common and branded format for the series, we will allow for special format requirements if there is a good reason for it. General format requirements for manuscripts can be viewed here: We are looking for manuscripts in the 60,000-80,000 word range, resulting in a published book of 150 -250 pages. Proposals should include the following elements: Working title, project description, research context and origin of work, table of contents (annotated), relation to existing literature, audience, length, illustrations, audience, competition, schedule.

Review Process and Editorial Board:

Each proposal and manuscript will be subject to a rigorous review facilitated by the editorial board of the series. The editorial board is made up of a representative group of senior scholars of suburban studies from a variety of disciplinary backgrounds and geographic provenance. The board will seek outside referees for each review. The final decision on publication lies with UTP. Series Editor: Roger Keil, York University (Political Science/Environmental Studies) Editorial Board Members: Eric Charmes, Lyon University, France (Planning) Shubhra Gururani, York University (Anthropology) Pierre Hamel, Université de Montreal (Sociology) Richard Harris, McMaster University (Geography) Louise Johnson, Deakin University, Australia (Social Sciences) Alan Mabin, University of Pretoria, South Africa (Urbanism) Nicholas A. Phelps, University College London, UK (Geography and Planning) Fulong Wu, University College London, UK (Geography & Planning)


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 global suburbs