Metropolitan Area

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Term Info
Metropolitan Area
Category Sustainable Development Terms
Last Edit By FIDIC
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Last Edit Date 2018-07-02

Metropolitan Area means :

SDABC2015.png The ABC for Sustainable Cities - A glossary for policy makers. 1st edition (2015)

Metropolitan regions can be defined as:

(i) region interrelated with a city, networks of cities, and

(ii) conurbated areas or areas with continuous high densities all across the territory, resulting from the process whereby cities become more economically interdependent with their surrounding settlements and hinterlands, creating regions with a single economy and labour market, a community with common interests and benefits of joint actions in various sectors. The defining scope for metropolitan regions are its spatial dimensions based upon the functional relationships of resource cycles, regional economic systems and formal as well as informal settlement structures. The functional linkages of metropolitan regions extend beyond administrative and political boundaries and usually include a number of local governments, peri-urban and rural lands as well as neighbouring cities. The economic links between the core and the periphery may become so close that one part cannot succeed without the other, and thus they are perceived and behave as a single entity. Metropolitan scale governance, at least with regard to some functions or subjects, is key for sustainable development given that fragmentation causes foregone opportunities for service provision efficiencies; spillovers across jurisdictional boundaries do not get addressed effectively, if at all; and regional income and service level inequalities tend to fester, or even grow over time.

Based on GIZ and UN-Habitat 2015, Unpacking Metropolitan Governance for Sustainable Development, retrieved at