Muzzini, Elisa and Gabriela Aparicio. Urban Growth and Spatial Transition in Nepal: An Initial Assessment. Directions in Development. Washington, DC: World Bank, 2013. http://go.worldbank.org/WJBNHGS090.
From the Foreward:
Nepal is undergoing two momentous transformations—from a rural to an urbanizing economy and from a unitary to a federal state. This book aims at understanding the first of these two transitions: Nepal’s journey toward becoming a predominantly urban economy. Nepal is urbanizing rapidly—the Kathmandu Valley is one of the fastest-growing metropolitan regions in South Asia, and small towns are mushrooming in proximity to highways and on the border with India. At this critical juncture of Nepal’s economic development, managing rapid urbanization is essential to improving the competitiveness of the urban economy, creating jobs, and accelerating economic growth. This growth will ultimately lead to reduced poverty.
The study carries out an initial assessment of Nepal’s transition from a predominantly rural to an urbanizing economy. This assessment aims at strengthening our understanding of the demographic and economic dimensions of the transition, and exploring the links between urbanization and economic growth in the context of Nepal.
This book has five chapters. Chapter 1 presents an overview of the urban and economic transition in Nepal. Chapter 2 discusses the spatial patterns of Nepal’s rapid urbanization and internal migration—a driving force of urban change—from both a demographic and an economic perspective. Chapter 3 presents an initial assessment of the challenges facing Nepal’s cities in urban planning and the delivery of infrastructure and services. And it discusses the spatial distribution of public expenditure for local infrastructure based on the results of a public expenditure survey carried out as part of the study. Chapter 4 presents a scoping assessment of the growth drivers of Nepal’s urban economies and the main constraints to turning these comparative advantages into competitive advantages. And chapter 5 draws the main conclusions and proposes strategic directions and actions to accelerate urban-based economic growth and foster sustainable urban development.