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Global Security and the Urban Future

in Program

Over half of all people on earth – some 3.5 billion human beings – now live in cities. By 2050, over six billion people will live in urban areas. Recognizing that sound management of global urbanization processes will prove critical in shaping the twenty-first century world, the Environmental Security Program in 2015 we will explore how urbanization intersects with multiple security issues, including climate change, energy supply and demand, water and food security, public health and disease, state fragility, internal and transnational migration, and natural disaster planning and relief.


Peter Engelke publishes working paper, “The Security of Cities: Development, Environment, and Conflict on an Urbanizing Planet.” Click here to download.

Peter Engelke, Visiting Fellow with the Environmental Security Program, is quoted in “Megacities, Global Security, and the Map of the Future,” published on April 19, 2012, by Stuart Kent of the New Security Beat, the award-winning website for the Environmental Change and Security Program at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars. Click here to read.


Environmental Factors Driving Migrants into Afghanistan’s Cities | August 16, 2012
By Zachary Weiss

Pakistan’s Energy Crisis: Beyond Hydroelectricity | July 30, 2012
By Zachary Weiss

The Security of Cities: Development, Environment, and Conflict on an Urbanizing Planet | May 24, 2012
By Peter Engelke

Cities and Environmental Security | February 16, 2012
By Peter Engelke

Mobility, Poverty, and the Cities of East Africa | May 5, 2010
By Charles Dulo Nyaoro

Migration to the City: Governance Challenges and Opportunities | May 5, 2010
By Carrie Chomuik

Cairo: The Perfect Storm? | June 16, 2009
By Carrie Chomuik

Mega Cities: The Nexus of Risk | 2009
By Global Health Security Program, Stimson Center


Peter Engelke participates in a panel discussion on “Megacities, Global Security, and the Map of the Future,” March 20, 2012, at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in Washington, DC. Click here to watch.

Traffic congestion in Cairo, Egypt, one of Africa’s largest cities.


Photo Credits:

Top Left: “Karachi City Street View in 1890,” courtesy of Flickr user Zainub Razvi, In 1890, Karachi’s population stood at a modest 85,000.

Top Right: “Korangi Road, Karachi, in 2007,” courtesy of Flickr user Hassam ul Qayyum, By 2007, Karachi’s population had soared to more than 12 million.

Bottom: “Smog over Cairo, Egypt,” courtesy of United Nations Photo,

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