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Social and Economic Impacts of Development

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Sustainable ArchitectureProf. Avlokita AgrawalDepartment of Architecture and PlanningIndian Institute of Technology, RoorkeeLecture- 08Social and Economic impacts of DevelopmentGood morning, welcome to the online course on Sustainable Architecture; I am yourinstructor Dr. Avlokita Agrawal, Assistant Professor at Department of Architecture andPlanning IIT, Roorkee. In the previous three lectures, we have seen the impacts of builtenvironment and development on the elements of nature; that is water, land and air. Intoday’s lecture, we would see how the changes which have been inflicted upon naturalenvironment or what is the impacts of built environment and the impacts on naturalenvironment have on the social and cultural well being of human beings?(Refer Slide Time: 01:19)If we look at the historic data of population growth and also look at the forecasts asshown on the screen; we see that the overall world population is increasing at a very firstpachase. And it is estimated, it is projected that the population growth of Africa and Asiawill be almost 90 percent of the total population growth in the world and urbanization by2050, which implies it would be putting a much more pressure on natural resources. (Refer Slide Time: 02:07)Out of this overall population growth, if we see the percentage share of urbanpopulationpopulation, we see it to be increasing steeply.The rural population out of the total population would be on a decline in the years tocome and there will be more and more concentration of people in the urban areas. Oururban areas as we have already seen are relying under the pressure of this population,they are not able to cope up, they are not able to manage their resources, theconsumption the way it is going right now and in the time to come; this pressure is goingto increase, as the world is gradually becoming more and more urbanized. (Refer Slide Time: 02:53)If we look at the America, it is already more than 80 percent urbanized; while if we lookat Asia and Africa, it is around 50 percent urbanized.We are looking at greater concentration of population in these two continents and we arealso looking at an increased urbanization in these two continents. We already know thekind of dismal situation that we have in Asia of which we are part. If we are becomingmore and more urbanized towards 2050; we are going to face severe crisis of resourcesas an estimate which has been put by; put up by world agencies only one third of thebuilt stock in India has been constructed as of you now.Around 60 percent of the built stock is yet to come up in the time, which implies thatmore and more buildings will be built; more and more urban areas will be created. Wealready are seeing a shortage of forests per capita ;capita; we are already seeing ashortage of water, clean air, land, cultivable land for feeding this existing population;what would the projected population do to us? Now, that is just an estimate of how theworld is going to be and majority of the socio culturalsocio-cultural problems arebecause of the settlements becoming larger in size and more and more urbanized. (Refer Slide Time: 04:57)If we look at the problems socio cultural problems of urbanization, the first and the mostsevere problem is the gap which is increasing between the rich and the poor. Because offlocking of people of all types of all skill sets of all characteristics in one center urbancenter; this gap is going to increase further.There are people who possessed certain skill set for example, farming, but they come toan urban center in search for a better employment and they do not get paid enough; theybecome poorer. While there is other class which is becoming richer because it hasadapted; the class has adapted or has developed the skill set, this gap is divided betweenthe rich and the poor is evident across the world in urban centers. (Refer Slide Time: 05:51)I am not talking about the developed countries where the large part of the population hascrossed that threshold, but I am talking about largely the developing nations; suchscenarios are quite common. There is a larger population which is deprived of theresources, while the some few select few consume excessively high amount of resourcesfor their survival.(Refer Slide Time: 06:21) Besides this urban and poor divide there is also an aa rural urban divide because moreand more urban areas; there is a greater focus on development of urban areas thanequipping the rural areas with the same facilities.For example, health, education specially in a country like ours we have very poorfacilities for education of children and for health; rural areas are totally deprived of thatthis these two together the gap between the rich poor and this divide between rural andurban leads to many more social problems. For example, an increased rate of crime;crime; there is an increased rate of crime simply because there are few who haveaccumulated a lot of resources, while there are other few who have no access to theseresources.So, the crime rate has been on rise across the world primarily because of this reason.(Refer Slide Time: 07:41)There are many other urban social issues; these issues are because of the way our citiesare growing. One very basic reason being the cities are much larger they are so big notpeople do not associate or connect with other individuals or the people living aroundthem. Now, humans are social animals by their existence.Now, if we do not socialize that is when a lot of social problems begin to arise. Ascompared to that let us look at,; let us compare our bigger urban centers with the ruralsettlements which are small in size and are also more connected where the society is more connected. In a rural area, people were more connected, people knew everybodyknew each other and by virtue of that they took care of each other for their social needs;for their at times their economic needs.While in an urban area we are not bothered about what the other person is going through;that is causing anxiety and depression in majority of the people because we are not ableto socialize, we are not able to express ourselves went our anxieties out and that is why agreater population percentage of population in urban areas is depressed; they bearanxiety and depression. There is bullying because people do not know each other, theydo not sympathize with each other, they do not have the fear of being scolded or caughtby other people for misbehaving; that is why bullying which further leads to anxiety anddepression.Anxiety and depression further leads to addictions; drug addiction amongst teenagers,children, grownups; peoples look towards drug addiction and alcoholism as a way ofescaping the anxiety and depression though it is not, but it is often sought as a way out ofdepression and anxiety. So, there is a greater percentage of population which isbecoming addicted to drugs and alcohol; larger in urban areas and lesser in rural areasbecause there is a check.Because of the disconnect between family members themselves because of nuclearfamilies becoming more promoted, more pronounced in urban areas as children move tourban areas and the elderly parents are left behind in the rural areas or ancestral homes.There are problems of elderly not being properly taken care of and also of an increasingrate of crime against elderly because they are not attended.In our traditional Indian society, the concept of joint families was there, where children,their parents, their grandparents would all stay together and complement the home insome way or the other; while they take care of each other’s need, they take care of thehousehold as such. In today’s times, in urban areas the children are being neglected,there is an increasing rate of crime against children. While in a traditional society, wehad elderly taking care of children and vice versa both were taken care of; there washardly any rate of crime against elderly and children.The society was a small scalesmall-scale society; so everybody knew what who the otherperson is and if anybody would see anything wrong happening against somebody, people were cautious; they would immediately notice and raise an alarm. In today’s times, ithardly happens because I do not know who the other person is and that is why we see agreater rate of crime against elderly and children and also women; all these three beingrelatively soft targets ;targets; they are physically weak relatively.I am not saying that they are weak, but by nature they are more prone to be overpoweredby bullying people. So, we see an increasing rate of crime against women in urban areas;in urban centers. This is simply by virtue of the planning by virtue of the urban design;the design of our cities, the design of our urban areas. We also see a lot of increase in thehealth problems; in cities in urban areas.Besides anxiety and depression, we see more and more of hypertension related problemson the rise in urban areas. Hypertension which includes high blood pressure, diabetes;these are on the rise because of stresses which people undergo on a daily basis; that is asocial problem it to large extent; if you talk to doctors, if you talk; if you look at thereasons which actually cause these it the primary reason is stress.And lot of these stresses can be taken off if the society is a well organized and connectedsociety, if we live if we are more socialsocial, we are likely to be happier and havinglesser of these stresses and then lesser of these health problems which are far morepronounced increased in urban areas.One significant problem that we have in urban areas is of postpartum depression inmothers. When women become mothers, they are already; they undergo a lot ofbiological changes in their bodies. Along with that, they undergo a lot of social change intheir lives because there is a new member to be taken care of and often women wouldundergo depression because they have a lot of increased responsibility, but nobody totalk to nobody to share around them.However, that never happened in traditional societies because people were alwaysaround each other; that is what human beings are social animals need. So, more and morewomen are getting into postpartum depressions because of these that is specially in theurban areas, urban centers. Such are the psychological problems besides the healthproblems as we have seen from the impacts of air on human well being and health; allthese social problems are further resulting in economic problems. So, there is an increased cost of welfare more and more medicare; medical facilities areneeded for the same population because people are unhealthy, people are not fit. Besidesthe increasing costs of medical facilities, it also impacts the economy because they arepoor performers. There are more hours of absence from the work, there is a reducedproductivity, people work lesser in their offices in at their workplaces; all this eventuallylead ing to an economy loss a loss of economy.Because of urban areas getting crowded and there are infrastructural problems, the accessto basic needs is not there.(Refer Slide Time: 16:37)People do not have access to clean drinking water and hygienic sanitation facilities evenwithin the urban areas. Some people have the access to the best of facilities while somehave none; this is because of the increased tremendous pressure on the natural resourcesin urban areas. (Refer Slide Time: 17:05)There is a weak access to health despite a lot of hospitals and clinics being available inthe cities, the access to healthcare facilities is not there for everyone because it comes ata price.And the population is so much, the concentration of population in urban centers is sohigh that even the subsidized and government provided healthcare is not enough to caterto the needs of this entire population. Though reforms are happening, changes arehappening yet; if the urban areas continue to grow like that, if the built environmentcontinues to grow like that I am not just talking about large urban areas but the smallertowns which are becoming more and more urbanized the same problems will startcreeping in these tier II, tier III cities as well; they have already started happening. (Refer Slide Time: 18:05)The access to education because of the high concentration population again it is difficultfor the government to provide access to good education to all the children in the cities;again because of the concentration of population.(Refer Slide Time: 18:25)Gender equality because women and women are the softer targets, there is an increasedcrime and inequality against women that is more pronounced by virtue of the scale ofsettlement. (Refer Slide Time: 18:45)We have more and more children being dragged into child labor simply because thefamilies cannot feed, they cannot sustainably survive because of the lack of employmentopportunities which are unfortunately amply available in villages, if proper promotion toagriculture and certain skills is given to them.(Refer Slide Time: 19:13)We have more number of children who are mentally and physically challenged; thispercentage is growing and it is because of the pollution to which the unborn children aresubjected to. Because of this contamination and pollution, there are more children who are growing to become mentally or physically challenged; this is a direct economy loss.A lot of health care investment, health care facilities and investment or expendituretowards taking care of such children goes in and that is a direct loss to the economy.(Refer Slide Time: 20:01)There is an increasing percentage of aging population who is subjected to crime that isall for this lecture. In the next lecture, through the impacts that we have established onnatural environment and on the humankind; the sociocultural problems impacts, wewould establish the need for sustainability in built environment or inan architecture.So, far we have been talking about sustainability and sustainable development distinctlyand these impacts distinctly. In the next lecture, we would try to connect these twoaspects and then see how we can develop or why do we need to develop our builtenvironment in such a manner, where people live happily, healthily and sustainably. Seeyou in the next lecture.Thank you.

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