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Constraining Urban “Sky-Rise” And “Sprawl” – Good Policy And Good Outcomes?

Assignment Requirements
Real Estate Economics
Constraining urban “sky-rise” and “sprawl” – good policy and good outcomes?
Since the 1950s, urban planners have pursued policies to control the growth of cities, for a range of objectives. What we are interested in here is not the “stated aims/objectives” (almost always laudable) but the intended and unintended consequences (actual outcomes) of policy. In saying that, bear in mind that the counter-factual – what would have happened in the absence of these policies – is hard to construct.
The object here is to look at this debate in a logical, structured way. The key is to discuss it within an economic framework – it should be apparent to your reader that you understand the basic urban economic models. Note that “non-economic considerations” can have an economic value attached to them.
While your opinion is not discounted, the very strong preference is to find sources which make the argument (your lecturer is not a source, i.e. 100% discounted).
At a minimum, you would be expected to read 3-4 articles. The relevant part(s) of the Brueckner textbook are sections 4.5 and 4.6 (in terms of policies), with earlier sections in that chapter discussing motivation for policies. The textbook is not one of your articles. Brueckner refers to some articles so that can be a start.
In the lecture, reference is made to the article by Kulish, Richards and Gillitzer (2011) – copy on website. This article, being relatively recent, contains a fairly up-to-date reference list – Brueckner is a bit dated.
Kulish, M., Richards, A. and Gillitzer, C. “Urban Structure and Housing Prices: Some Evidence from Australian Cities.” Reserve Bank of Australia Research Discussion Paper, RDP 2011-03.
Discussion with your Fellow Students
While plagiarism is strictly forbidden, discussion with fellow students is strongly encouraged.
Word Limit
The word limit is 1200 words. Range would be 1000-1200. DO NOT go over the limit. If 50+ assignments by 800 words was a lot of reading, think about 50% more!!
The word limit also imposes a discipline on you to write succinctly. 2
This assignment is worth 12% of your final grade. The electronic version is due by Thursday 25th September 23.59pm. A paper copy is to be submitted to the Economics Assignment Box on ASB (west lobby) ground floor by 5pm on Tuesday 30th September.
The official time of submission of your assignment is the time at which you upload it to the Turnitin box on course website. Late submissions will be penalised 3 marks for the first day, and an additional 2 marks for each additional day (or part thereof). Thus an assignment that is 1 minute late will be penalised 3 marks, and one which is 24 hours and 1 minute late will be penalised 5 marks. Plan to submit your assignments at least one day ahead of time to avoid last-minute technical complications.
Special consideration does not apply to late submission of assignments. You have a reasonable period to complete the assignment and it is your risk if you leave it for the last few days. Illness for one or two days will not entitle you to special consideration.
Clarifications if required
Questions about the assignment are best addressed in the lecture. (Other students will probably have a similar question.)
As before, the policies are set out in the Part B of the Course Outline. 3
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