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GEOG2041 Helsinki field course reading list

Helsinki: urban growth and sustainability, 2019/20, Semester 2
Dr Gordon Mitchell
Tutor information is taken from the Module Catalogue

GEOG2041 Helsinki: Growth and Sustainability

Bibliography / Readings

Your assessed work will need to be appropriately supported by sources. This list provides some sources that are relevant, but is by no means comprehensive, and you should conduct your own literature review for sources you feel are most relevant. The sources here also provide information on Finland, and cities of the Helsinki region – these includes books, reports and journal papers; there is too much for you to read here, and we do not expect you to do so, but the list does provide an initial pool of material to select from and lead you to others. Sources are not duplicated across sections, but may be relevant to more than one section. A few of these are on the VLE for your convenience (mostly the harder to find sources), but don’t assume that because a source is posted on the VLE it is more important. There are also a variety of less / non-academic sources, not listed here, also posted on the VLE. Finally, note that your trip tutors have a range of materials on Helsinki (guides, histories, novels, films etc) that we have picked up over the years – we are happy to share these with anyone interested. 

A. Urban form, function and sustainability

This is our particular academic focus, and we need to develop a generic understanding (tested via the essay) prior to arrival in Helsinki. 

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(a) Urban form debate: land use, transport and sustainability

Here are some references on the centrist v decentrist debate. The book by Frey is useful for a basic understanding of the various spatial forms and their relative merits, as are the books book by Jenks et al, and the subsequent follow up by Williams et al. The latter, an edited volume, has views on the compaction/urban form debate from a variety of perspectives, including papers that relate specifically to transport, urban design, the environment and social / quality of life dimensions. One of the fiercest critics of urban compaction was Mike Breheny, who wrote widely on the topic, and some reading is included below. For an empirical analysis of the sustainability of urban form in Helsinki, have a look at the Lautso et al PROPOLIS report, available on the web (The web link on this report is unstable so you may need to google PROPOLIS, and also the related EU SPARTACUS project by (Wegener and Spiekermann) for these reports or their summaries. There are also two papers here by yours truly, on the urban form / sustainability work done in the UK, and discussed in class.

Banister, David (ed) (1995). Transport and urban development ISBN: 0419203907. Spon, London.

Boarnet, Marlon G. and Randall Crane (2000). Travel by design : the influence of urban form on travel ISBN: 0195123956. Oxford University Press.

Breheny M. (Ed.) (1992) Sustainable development and urban form ISBN: 0850861608, Pion, London

Breheny M. (1999) Urban compaction: feasible and acceptable? Cities. ISSN: 0264-2751, 14, 4, 209-217

Bruun, E. and Givoni, M., (2015). Six research routes to steer transport policy. Nature. ISSN: 0028-0836; 1476-4687, 523(7558), p.29.

Burns, Marie (2005). Public transport & urban design ISBN: 8299011140. HiTrans, Stavanger, Norway.

Burton E. (2000) The compact city: just or just compact? Urban studies. ISSN: 0042-0980, 37(11), 1969-2006

Camagni, R. Gibelli M.C. and Rigamonti, P. (2002). Urban mobility and urban form: the social and environmental costs of different patterns of urban expansion. Ecological economics. ISSN: 0921-8009, 40, 199-216.

Cervero, R. (1997). Polycentrism, commuting and residential location in the San Francisco Bay area. Environment and planning. A : environment and planning. ISSN: 0308-518x, 29, 865-886.

Davoudi, S., (2003). Polycentricity in European spatial planning: from an analytical tool to a normative agenda. European planning studies. ISSN: 0965-4313, 11(8), pp.979-999.

De Roo, G. and Miller, D. (Eds.) (2000) Compact cities and sustainable urban development : a critical assessment of policies and plans from an international perspective. Ashgate.

Dieleman F.M., Dijst M.J. and Spit T. (1999) Planning the compact city: the Randstad Holland experience, European planning studies. ISSN: 0965-4313 7(5), 605-621

Echenique, M; Hargreaves, T; and Mitchell, G. (2009) Spatial planning, sustainability and long run trends.Town and country planning., 78, 9, 380-385. OCR REQUESTED BY LIBRARY (SRJ 14/12/2017) 

Echenique, M., Mitchell, G., Hargreaves, A., and Namdeo, A. (2012). Growing cities sustainably: Does urban form really matter? Journal of the American Planning Association. ISSN: 0194-4363, 78:2, 121-137 

ECOTEC (1993) Reducing transport emissions through planning ISBN: 0117527858 £18.00. Report for DoE/DoT.

Frey, H. (1999) Designing the city : towards a more sustainable urban form ISBN: 0419221107. E and F Spon.

Hall P. (2001) Sustainable cities or town cramming? In: Layard A., Davoudi S. and Batty S (Eds), Planning for a sustainable future ISBN: 0415234085 (pbk); 0415232279, Spon Press, London, 101-114

Jenks M., Burton E. and Williams K. (1996) The Compact city : a sustainable urban form? ISBN: 0419213007 E&F Spon.

Lautso et al., (2004) PROPOLIS: Planning and research of policies for land use and transport for increasing urban sustainability, EU RTD Final Report. Summary here : 

May, A.D., (2013). Urban transport and sustainability: The key challenges. International journal of sustainable transportation. ISSN: 1556-8318; 1556-8334, 7(3), pp.170-185.

Mitchell, G., Hargreaves, A., Namdeo, A., and Echenique, M. (2011) Land use, transport and carbon futures: The impact of spatial form strategies in three UK urban regions. Environment and planning. A : environment and planning. ISSN: 0308-518x volume 43, 2143- 2163

Neuman, M. (2005) The Compact City Fallacy. Journal of Planning Education and Research ISSN: 0739-456X. 25, 11-26.

Newman P.W.G. and Kenworthy J.R. (1999) Sustainability and cities : overcoming automobile dependence, Island Press, Washington DC

Owens (1984) Spatial structure and energy demand, in Cope D.R. et al, Energy Policy and Land-Use Planning : An International Perspective ISBN: 9781483285894 (e-book), Pergamon, Oxford, 215-240

Papa, E. and Bertolini, L., (2015). Accessibility and transit-oriented development in European metropolitan areas. Journal of transport geography. ISSN: 0966-6923, 47, pp.70-83.

Spiekerman, K. and Wegener, M. (2007) The PROPOLIS model for assessing urban sustainability. In: Deakin M, Mitchell G, Vreeker R and Nijkamp P.(Eds.) Sustainable Urban Development Volume 2: The environmental assessment methods ISBN: 0415322162; 0415322170 (pbk) : £32.00; 0012981354. Routledge, Oxon, 544pp

Urban Task Force (1999). Towards an urban renaissance : mission statement. ISBN: 185112165X. Final report of the urban task force chaired by Lord Rogers of Riverside, DETR, London.

Wee, B van (2002) Land use and transport: research and policy challenges. Journal of transport geography. ISSN: 0966-6923, 10, 259-271.

Williams, K., Burton, E. and Jenks, M. (Eds.) (2000). Achieving sustainable urban form ISBN: 9781136804809 (e-book). E & F Spon

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(b) Land use transport interaction

Cities have spatial (land use) planners and transport planners. These are interlinked systems but cities vary in the extent to which they are deliberatively planned in an integrated way. The field trip should highlight contrasts in this respect between the UK and Finland, and cities of the HMA. It’s useful to have an insight into land use – transport interaction. Shaw provides a short accessible overview of land use and transport interaction, including mutual influences, lessons learned, and challenges. The other sources take this further, showing how this understanding is used to build integrated planning models. These models represent over half a century of urban modelling in this area, and applications today include activities such as designing London’s congestion charge or (see refs above – e.g. Lautso, Echenique) assessing city sustainability under planning policy.

DfT (2014) Land-Use Transport Interaction Models. WebTaG 16pp

Hunt, J D and D C Simmonds (1993): Theory and application of an integrated land-use and transport modelling framework. Environment and planning. B : planning and design. ISSN: 0265-8135, 20, pp 221-244.

Paulley, N J and F V Webster (1991): Overview of an international study to compare models and evaluate land-use and transport policies. Transport reviews. ISSN: 0144-1647, 11, pp 197-222.

Shaw, S (2009) Transportation and land use. In Thrift, N (ed.) International Encyclopaedia of Human Geography, Elsevier, p470-475. [library book; this section is in the transportation folder] - Available online:

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(c) Edge cities

The HMA region has a mix of development types/forms. A particular type of development is the ‘Edge-city’ (coined by Garreau), and an indication that this form exists here is given by Espoo’s membership of an international Edge City network. What is an edge city?

Auge, M. (1997). Non-places : introduction to an anthropology of supermodernity ISBN: 1859840515 (pbk) : No price; 1859849563 (cased) : No price. Verso, London.

Beauregard, R. (1995). Edge cities: peripheralising the centre. Urban geography. ISSN: 0272-3638, 16, 708-721.

Garreau, J. (1991). Edge city : life on the new frontier ISBN: 0385424345. Doubleday, New York.

Keil, R. and Ronneberger, K. (1994). Going up country: internationalization and urbanization on Frankfurt’s northern fringe. Environment and planning. D : society and space. ISSN: 0263-7758, 12, 137-166.

Phelps, N.A., McNeill, D. and Parsons, N. (2000). In search of a European edge urban identity: trans-European networking among edge urban municipalities. European urban and regional studies. ISSN: 0969-7764, 9 (3), 112-124.

Phelps, N.A., and Parsons, N. (2003). Edge urban geographies: notes from the margins of Europe’s capital cities. Urban studies. ISSN: 0042-0980, 40 (9), 1725-1749.

Phelps, N.A. (1998). On the edge of something big: edge city economic development in Croydon. The town planning review. ISSN: 0041-0020; 1478-341X, 69 (4), 441-465.

Soja, E. (2000). Postmetropolis : critical studies of cities and regions ISBN: 1577180011 (pbk.) : No price; 1577180003. Blackwell, Oxford.

Charlesworth, J. and Cochrane, A. (1994). Tales of the suburbs: the local politics of growth in the South East of England. Urban studies. ISSN: 0042-0980, 31, 1723-1738.

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(d) Urbanism and sustainability books

This is a vast literature, and the sources below are just a small selection of relevant broader reading. One of the major developments in Espoo is a modelled on the Garden City concept of Howard, Unwin and Parker, hence you will find some associated sources below. Rydin provides an accessible over of planning as a whole, whilst Reeds short book introduces US ‘Smart Growth’ ideas to a UK audience. Smart growth and Transit Oriented Development are US terms (and searching on these terms will reveal masses of relevant literature), but the concepts are much more widespread and will be familiar to any who have dipped into the sustainable urban form literature.

Cherry, Gordon E. (ed) (1980). Shaping an urban world ISBN: 0720109035. Mansell, London.

Gordon, David (ed) (1990). Green cities : ecologically sound approaches to urban space ISBN: 0921689543; 0921689551. Black Rose Books, Montreal.

Hall, Peter and Colin Ward (1998). Sociable cities : the legacy of Ebenezer Howard ISBN: 0471985058 (pbk) : No price; 047198504X. John Wiley and Sons, Chichester.

Howard, Ebenezer (1985). Garden cities of tomorrow ISBN: 0948083018 (with an introduction by Ray Thomas and New Towns bibliography by Stephen Potter). Attic Books, Eastbourne.

Kaplan, David H., James O. Wheeler, Steven R. Holloway and Thomas W. Hodler (cartographer) (2004). Urban geography ISBN: 0471451584; 047135998x. Wiley, Chichester.

Miller, Mervyn (1992). Raymond Unwin : garden cities and town planning ISBN: 0718513630. Leicester University Press.

Newman, P. and Thornley, A. (1997). Urban planning in Europe : international competition, national systems and planning projects ISBN: 041511179X (pbk ; cased) : No price; 0415111781; 0203427947 (electronic book). Routledge, London.

Osborn, Frederic J. (1969) Green-belt cities ISBN: 0238789241. Evelyn, Adams & Mackay, London.

Parsons Brinckerhoff Quade & Douglas Inc (1996). Transit and urban form ISBN: 0309057221 (set). National Academy Press, Washington, D.C..

Reeds, Jon (2011) Smart growth : from sprawl to sustainability ISBN: 9780857840202 (e-book), Green Books.

Rydin, Yvonne (2011) The purpose of planning : creating sustainable towns and cities Policy Press, Bristol.

Williams, Katie (ed) (2005). Spatial planning, urban form and sustainable transport ISBN: 0754642518 (alk. paper). Ashgate, Aldershot]

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B. Finland and the HMA

Having gained a grasp of some of the issues involved in land use and transport planning for a sustainable city, you will be in a position to look at a city or region, from this perspective. These sustainable city concepts are widely applicable, but the Helsinki region provides a good opportunity to evaluate planning approaches, comparing cities of the HMA, and the HMA with places you already know well, particularly Britain. The sources below provide some place specific material to choose from, so you can gain some familiarity and understanding with Finland and the Helsinki region. Don’t forget, the VLE has further (less academic material) whilst the supplementary module guide has links to useful web resources.

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(a) Finland urban development in a European context

Key EU policy documents affecting urban development across Europe, and as good(ish) Europeans, in Finland too, are the European Spatial Development Perspective and the Territorial Agenda. These are on the VLE and Faludi attempts to explain them.

Faludi, A (2007) Making Sense of the Territorial Agenda of the European Union, 25, European Journal of Spatial Development (on VLE) - Available online:

Metzger, J., & Schmitt, P. (2012). When soft spaces harden: the EU strategy for the Baltic Sea Region. Environment and planning. A : environment and planning. ISSN: 0308-518x, 44(2), 263-280.

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(b) Finland

Antonsich, M. (2005) Cardinal Markers of Finland's Identity Politics and National Identity, Eurasian geography and economics. ISSN: 1538-7216, 46:4, 290-305

Castells, M. and Himanen, P. (2002). The information society and the welfare state : the Finnish model ISBN: 0199256993. O.U.P., Oxford.

Haikio, M. (2002). Nokia : the inside story ISBN: 0273659839. Pearson, London.

Lewis, R D. (2005) Finland, cultural lone wolf ISBN: 193193018x (pbk. : alk. paper). Intercultural Press, London [history and cultural development]

Moisio S (2008) Finlandisation versus westernisation: Political recognition and Finland's European Union membership debate, National identities ISSN: 1460-8944, 10:1, 77-93 [Finnish identity in context of joining EU]  DOI:10.1080/14608940701819785

Möller, U. and Bjereld, U., (2010). From Nordic neutrals to post-neutral Europeans: Differences in Finnish and Swedish policy transformation. Cooperation and conflict ISSN: 0010-8367, 45(4), pp.363-386.[On Finland’s foreign policy relations with NATO and Russia]

Monni, S. and Raes, F., (2008). Multilevel climate policy: the case of the European Union, Finland and Helsinki. Environmental science and policy. ISSN: 1462-9011, 11(8), pp.743-755.

OECD (2016), OECD Economic Surveys: Finland 2016, OECD Publishing, Paris. [Annual survey with lots of stats and reporting on long and short term economic trends and challenges]

Säynäjoki, E.S., Inkeri, V., Heinonen, J. and Junnila, S., (2014). How central business district developments facilitate environmental sustainability–A multiple case study in Finland. Cities. ISSN: 0264-2751, 41, pp.101-113.

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(c) Helsinki, and cities of the HMA

Ache, P (2011) Creating futures that would otherwise not be – Reflections on the Greater Helsinki Vision process and the making of metropolitan regions, Progress in planning. ISSN: 0305-9006 75, 155–192

Bell, Marjatta and Marjatta Hietala (2002). Helsinki, the innovative city : historical perspectives ISBN: 9517463596. Finnish Literature Society & City of Helsinki Urban Facts, Helsinki. [From earliest beginnings to a ‘knowledge economy super power’, good for understanding the city’s historical development].

Haila, A. and Le Galès, P., (2004). Chapter 8 The coming of age of metropolitan governance in Helsinki? In: Metropolitan Governance in the 21st Century: Capacity, Democracy and the Dynamics of Place, p.117 (on VLE)

Heinonen, J. and Junnila, S., (2011). Implications of urban structure on carbon consumption in metropolitan areas. Environmental research letters ISSN: 1748-9326, 6(1), p.014018.

Heinonen, J., Kyrö, R. and Junnila, S., (2011). Dense downtown living more carbon intense due to higher consumption: a case study of Helsinki. Environmental research letters ISSN: 1748-9326, 6(3), p.034034.

Herrschel, T. and Newman, P. (2002). Governance of Europe's city regions : planning, policy and politics. Routledge, London. (esp. pages 77-81)

Ilonen, A. (2000) An Architectural Guide : Helsinki, Espoo, Kauniainen, Vantaa ISBN: 9789511231943. Ottava publishing, Helsinki. (Available in Helsinki, short planning history, architecture, maps and guide)

Jäppinen, S., Toivonen, T. and Salonen, M., (2013). Modelling the potential effect of shared bicycles on public transport travel times in Greater Helsinki: An open data approach. Applied geography. ISSN: 0143-6228, 43, pp.13-24.

Kauppinen, T.M., (2002). The beginning of immigrant settlement in the Helsinki metropolitan area and the role of social housing. Journal of housing and the built environment. ISSN: 1566-4910, 17(2), pp.173-197.

Kent, N. (2004) Helsinki : a cultural and literary history ISBN: 1902669754 (pbk.) : £12.00; 1902669746. Cities of the Imagination series, Signal Books, Oxford.

Kyrö, R., Heinonen, J., Säynäjoki, A. and Junnila, S., (2012). Assessing the potential of climate change mitigation actions in three different city types in Finland. Sustainability ISSN: 2071-1050, 4(7), pp.1510-1524.

Kyttä, M., Broberg, A., Tzoulas, T. and Snabb, K., (2013). Towards contextually sensitive urban densification: Location-based softGIS knowledge revealing perceived residential environmental quality. Landscape and urban planning. ISSN: 0169-2046, 113, pp.30-46.

Kyttä, M., Hirvonen, J., Rudner, J., Pirjola, I., & Laatikainen, T. (2015). The last free-range children? Children’s independent mobility in Finland in the 1990s and 2010s. Journal of transport geography. ISSN: 0966-6923, 47, 1-12.

Lautso, Kari and Pastinen, Virpi (2002) Sprawling Cities and Transport: from Evaluation to Recommendations. EU SCATTER project Monographic report, Case city Helsinki (on VLE)

Maijala, Olli and Sairinen, Rauno Chap 6. Promoting Sustainable Urban Form: Implementing urban consolidation policies around the Helsinki Metropolitan Region In: Jenks, M., Kozak, D. and Takkanon, P. (2013). World cities and urban form : fragmented, polycentric, sustainable?  Routledge. Print ISBN: 9780415451840 eBook ISBN: 9781315811871 pages 95-112.

OECD (2003). OECD territorial reviews. Helsinki, Finland. ISBN: 9264199616. OECD, Paris.

Salonen, M., & Toivonen, T. (2013). Modelling travel time in urban networks: comparable measures for private car and public transport. Journal of transport geography. ISSN: 0966-6923, 31, 143-153.

Salonen, Arto O.,and Åhlberg, Mauri (2013) Obstacles to Sustainable Living in the Helsinki Metropolitan Area. Sustainable Cities and Society ISSN: 2210-6707, 8, 48-55 

Säynäjoki, E.S., Heinonen, J. and Junnila, S., (2014). The power of urban planning on environmental sustainability: a focus group study in Finland. Sustainability ISSN: 2071-1050, 6(10), pp.6622-6643.

Schilz, C (2006) Urban Design for Sustainability: Learning from Helsinki. The Sir George Pepler International Award, RTPI. - Available online:

Sundman, M. (1991) Urban planning in Finland after 1850, pp60-115. In: Hall, T (Ed.) Planning and urban growth in Nordic countries ISBN: 9781135829872 (e-book) 9780419168409 ISBN: 9781135829872 (e-book). E and F Spon. (A history of urban planning in Finland from about 1850-1950, but stops before major urban transformation of last half century)

Toivonen, S., & Viitanen, K. (2015). Forces of change shaping the future commercial real estate market in the Helsinki Metropolitan Area in Finland. Land use policy. ISSN: 0264-8377, 42, 471-478.

Vaattovaara, M. and Kortteinen, M. (2003) Beyond Polarisation versus Professionalisation? A Case Study of the Development of the Helsinki Region, Finland, Urban studies. ISSN: 0042-0980, 40, 11, 2127–2145

Vanolo, Alberto (2008). Internationalization in the Helsinki Metropolitan Area: Images, Discourses and Metaphors. European planning studies. ISSN: 0965-4313 16:2, 229 – 252. 

Van den Berg, L, Braun, E. and van Winden, W. (2001). Growth clusters in European metropolitan cities : a comparative analysis of cluster dynamics in the cities of Amsterdam, Eindhoven, Helsinki, Leipzig, Lyons, Manchester, Munich, Rotterdam and Vienna ISBN: 0754613828. Ashgate, Aldershot. (pages 68-98)

Yigitcanlar, T., & Lönnqvist, A. (2013). Benchmarking knowledge-based urban development performance: Results from the international comparison of Helsinki. Cities. ISSN: 0264-2751, 31, 357-369.

Last update: GM 12/08/2017

This list was last updated on 19/12/2018