Urban Policy Series

Malaysia has experienced one of the highest rates of urbanisation in Asia. By the first three decades since independence in 1957, Malaysia had already transformed from a mainly rural population to an urban-majority society.

Today more than seventy-five percent of Malaysians live in the country’s towns and cities. This change has bought enormous benefits to the nation and driven the rise of an aspirational middle-class.

However, with the rapid pace of urban transformation, new challenges affecting the development and well-being of citizens continue to surface. Public policy tends to lag behind, even as the forces of globalisation and climate change impact upon the economy and reshape the political ecology of the city. There is a need therefore to bridge the gap between the emerging challenges faced by citizens and public policy making.

This Urban Policy Series is a special initiative by Think City to bring together key thought leaders in addressing the multiple dimensions of urban transformation. These policy notes aim to raise public awareness about specific issues and frame these issues in a manner that stimulates public debate and policy dialogue.