Subscribe to our newsletter
Picture of Urban Planning after War, Disaster and Disintegration

Urban Planning after War, Disaster and Disintegration

Case Studies

Author(s): John Yarwood

Book Description

This book concerns the relationship between urban planning (and similar things) on the one hand, and war, natural disaster and societal or political disintegration on the other. The supposition is that one may mitigate the other. The book recounts the author’s professional experience of specific cases of disaster (earthquake and flood) in the Philippines, war in Bosnia, Afghanistan and South Sudan, and disintegration in Albania and Ireland. He identifies the key themes in urban and regional planning which these case studies illustrate.

The themes include (a) the delivery of building land with site preparation, infrastructure and property rights; (b) the size and amount of plots able to match both demographic projections and wealth distribution; (c) the creation of a property market able to deliver affordable land and buildings to match demand, encourage investment and further the development of the economy; (d) the spatial or geographic adjustment of institutional patterns to reflect the components of identity—making for ‘fuzzy’ sovereignty; (e) a form of organisation which leads to effective project management and implementation, and so on. The view is taken that lack of suitable development land supply, a land market unable to deliver affordable property to the people and unable to support economic growth, and a spatial-institutional pattern unable to match key aspects of identity, are all causes of war as well as societal or political decline.

The book contains many drawings prepared by the author, including plans of urban projects described in the text. It will be of interest particularly to architects, town planners, municipal engineers and civil engineers, urban administrators, urban economists, politicians, diplomats, soldiers, and staff of NGOs and international agencies.


ISBN-13: 978-1-4438-2342-5
ISBN-10: 1-4438-2342-2
Date of Publication: 01/10/2010
Pages / Size: 240 / A5
Price: £39.99


John Yarwood graduated in Architecture from the University of Edinburgh and in Urban Planning from the University of Sheffield. His doctoral thesis concerned the history of Islamic urbanism. After an early career in local government, he was for five years Head of the architects’ department of Telford New Town Development Corporation. After two years as Head of Urban Renewal in Bahrain, he worked as a consultant in Turkey, the Philippines, Kuwait, Jamaica, Dubai, Germany, Finland, Britain, Russia, Poland, China, Ireland, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Sudan, Afghanistan and Albania. He has worked for the EU, EC and the World Bank. Subsequently he worked as an academic at University College Dublin. He was awarded an MBE in 1997 after his work in Bosnia. He is a fellow of the Royal Asiatic Society. He used to be a Quaker. He is married to an ex- children’s psychiatric social worker, who is now a counsellor to refugees and torture victims. They have three grown-up children.