'Some of the most perplexing problems in developing countries today have their roots in the explosion of urban populations and the stresses and strains this state of affairs imposes on effective service provision. In this masterful book, Meine Pieter van Dijk provides a general framework for thinking about these problems, together with a strategic vision for resolving the predicaments that they engender.' - Allen J. Scott, University of California, Los Angeles, US'Professor van Dijk's book gives a much needed structure to this knowledge domain. His emphasis on institutions will help practitioners, students, teachers and trainers side step the traditional public-private sector stereotypes that are frequently still deeply embedded among professionals and public administrators in developing countries. His emphasis on decentralisation and the clarification of responsibilities between stakeholders and partners will help his readers find workable new solutions that may be quite unique to their local context.'- Chris Webster, Cardiff University, UKUrban management is a relatively new topic, which has gained increasing importance due to a rise in urbanization and a wave of decentralization programs in recent decades. This innovative book is the first systematic treatment of the critical urban management issues facing developing countries. The volume brings together a number of theoretical approaches and practical experiences in order to study the economic and financial aspects of urban management. The author argues that urban managers have to make their cities more competitive via the new opportunities provided by decentralization, and suggests that the formulation of a development strategy and the use of elements from new public management theory will improve urban governance and service delivery. In addition, emphasis is placed on the importance of involving different stakeholders, which will lead to an integrated analysis of urban problems and, therefore, integrated solutions. Related issues such as urban environmental sustainability and the role of modern information technology are also explored in detail. The book concludes with a review of the emerging new themes at the forefront of contemporary urban management studies.This important new volume will be an essential resource for students, scholars and practitioners with an interest in urban planning, development and management.