The World Class City Concept and its Repercussions on Urban Planning for Cities in the Asia Pacific Region
In a uni-polar world few global institutions – UNO, IMF, World Bank, WTO, etc. – have dominated almost all spheres of global and national development policies. In the market economy thus developed, infrastructure projects are being built by international bidding companies which prove costlier than the earlier arrangements. Deregulation and decentralization of governance has given rise to mafias, who, with ever-increasing prowess, are operating in the real estate business, too. The role of various actors affecting the shape and politics of the cities in this context has been elaborated in this paper. The neo-liberal urban development paradigm, thus gave the concept of world class cities, which, though accepted universally, has shown serious implications be it Delhi, Hochiminh City, Seoul, or Karachi. Elaborating the case of Karachi, the paper suggests alternate to the world class city concept highlighting the need for a humanist and environment-friendly approach.