chapter  8
63 Pages

Government Policies and Small and Intermediate Urban Centres

ByJorge E. Hardoy, David Satterthwaite

In surveying published literature on government policies or government actions which affect small and intermediate urban centres, it is difficult to know what to exclude. Virtually every government policy, action or item of expenditure has some effect on the spatial distribution of development - and the form this development takes. One of the best documented attempts by a government to stimulate and support urban development in a backward region has been the Brazilian government's efforts in the north-east, a region with more than 30 million inhabitants. The government gave considerable resources to housing and infrastructure investment in the development towns, each of which was planned to accommodate between 15,000 and 60,000 inhabitants. The concept of the growth centre applied to small or intermediate urban centres in the rural and agricultural context may have a much wider relevance to most Third World nations than when applied to changing the spatial distribution of industrial development.