Københavns Universitet
Uafhængig af ledelsen

PhD thesis defense

Ditte R. Brøgger, IGN, defends her thesis about the process of becoming urban in Nepal

PhD thesis defense — Ditte Brøgger defends her PhD thesis at IGN on 10 May


Date & Time:

Auditorium C, Department of Geosciences and Natural Resource Management, Øster Voldgade 10, 1350 Kbh K

Hosted by:
Geography Section


Ditte R. Brøgger defends her thesis,

Becoming urban: critical explorations of the co-production of people and places

Associate Professor Jytte Agergaard

Assessment Committee:
Professor Jonathan Rigg, School fo Geographical Science, University of Bristol – UK
Senior Researcher Tristan Bruslé, The Himalayan Research Centre, CNRS, Paris – France
Associate Professor Anne Gravsholt Busck (chair), IGN

People and places around the world are in a process of becoming urban. In Nepal, this process is resulting in a rapid, diverse and dynamic urban transformation with substantial effects on people’s lives and the place they live in. The aim of this PhD thesis is to explore the continuous co-production of people and places in the process of becoming urban from a Southern perspective. The thesis draws on ethnographic case studies in three urban sites in Nepal, including Ilam, a typically old administrative centre, Birtamode, a new commercial centre, and Balaju, a peri-urban area of the capital, Kathmandu. The empirical, methodological and conceptual engagement with the urban reality in these places in Nepal has led to the formulation of two novel concepts for understanding the process of becoming urban, namely the migration-urbanization nexus and urban diaspora space. These conceptual advancements emphasise that the roles of migrant agency and translocal behaviour provides important insights into understanding urban transformation and the reproduction of rural hierarchies in Nepal’s emerging urban areas. Furthermore, a micro-geopolitical and a rights-based approach presented in the thesis deepens our understanding of the process of becoming urban in Nepal on both a national and local level. This thesis demonstrates how a better understanding of the complexity and diversity of ordinary city life in different types of urban settlements in the global South is crucial for the conceptual advancement of urban theory.

The thesis is available for inspection at the PhD administration office 04.1.413