Economics for Planners

Urban Planning

Fall 2012

Smita Srinivas, instructor

Cities are run by city governments. These governments provide infrastructure, goods and also regulate the provision of goods by private firms. They promote health and welfare through land use and environmental regulation; and they are charged with ensuring that political power and economic resources will be distributed equitably. Yet governments operate in societies where resource allocation is governed primarily by markets. Economics provides tools, frequently controversial to guide decisions about when and how government should be involved in providing or subsidizing services and in shaping market activity.