India has a population of 461 million people living in cities. This figure is increasing at a rate of 2.3 percent every year. Cities are expected to generate 75% of India’s national GDP by 2031. It’s a major job to build the essential urban infrastructure: 70% to 80% of the infrastructure required by 2050 has yet to be completed, with an estimated investment deficit of $827 billion.

Read on to learn from the basics including what urbanization is and its effect on society.

What is Urbanization and Its Effects on Society?

Urbanization is the movement of people from rural to urban regions, allowing cities and towns to expand. It may also be described as a gradual growth in the population of towns and cities. The idea that cities and towns have accomplished better economic, social, and political achievements than rural regions has a strong effect.

Now that you have understood the meaning of urbanization, let’s move on to the causes, effects and solutions.

Various Causes of Urbanization

Industrialization in Urbanization

Industrialization is a movement that represents a transition away from traditional agricultural economics and toward a new non-agricultural economy, resulting in a modernised society. Because of better job possibilities, more individuals have been drawn to relocate from rural to urban regions since the industrial revolution.

Industrialization has improved job prospects by allowing individuals to work in contemporary sectors in occupations that contribute to economic progress.

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Commercialization in Urbanization

In the process of urbanisation, commerce and trade play a significant role. The contemporary era’s distribution of products and services, as well as commercial transactions, has resulted in the development of modern marketing organisations and exchange techniques, which have accelerated the expansion of towns and cities.

Commercialization and commerce are associated with the belief that towns and cities provide better business possibilities and returns than rural regions.

Social Benefits and Services in Urbanization

There are several social advantages to living in a city or town. Better educational facilities, higher living standards, improved sanitation and housing, improved health care, improved recreation facilities, and improved social life are only a few examples.

As a result, an increasing number of individuals are being compelled to relocate to cities and towns in order to access a wide range of social benefits and services that are not available in rural regions.

Employment Opportunities in Urbanization

There are plenty of work possibilities in cities and towns, attracting individuals from rural regions in search of a better life.

As a result, the majority of people typically relocate to metropolitan regions in search of well-paying work in a variety of development sectors, including public health, education, transportation, sports and leisure, industries, and business operations.

Higher-value-added occupations are created and increased by services and industries, resulting in additional work possibilities.

Modernization in Urbanization

In the course of urbanisation, modernization is extremely essential. People feel they may have a happy life in cities as cities grow more technologically advanced, with extremely sophisticated communication, transportation, medical facilities, clothing code, enlightenment, liberalism, and other social amenities available.

People in urban regions also accept changes in their lifestyles, such as housing habits, attitudes, clothing, cuisine, and beliefs. As a consequence, people migrate to cities, and cities expand as a result of the daily influx of people.

Rural-urban Transformation in Urbanization

Cities emerge as rural regions transition into urbanisation as places grow more fertile and affluent as a result of mineral discoveries, resource exploitation, or agricultural operations. Productivity growth boosts the economy and more high-value-added job possibilities.

This necessitates the development of greater infrastructure, better educational institutions, stronger health facilities, better transit networks, banking institutions, improved governance, and good housing.

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Effects of Urbanization

Positive Effects of Urbanization

If urbanisation occurs within reasonable bounds, it has a number of beneficial consequences. As a result, some of the beneficial effects of urbanisation include job development, technical and infrastructure improvements, enhanced transportation and communication, high-quality educational and medical facilities, and higher living standards. Extensive urbanisation, on the other hand, almost always has negative consequences.

Housing Problems

People are drawn to cities and towns as a result of urbanisation, resulting in rapid population growth. There is a continuous scarcity of housing as the number of people living in metropolitan areas grows.

This is owing to a lack of expanding space for housing and public services, as well as poverty, unemployment, and expensive building materials that only a few people can afford.

Overcrowding in Urbanization

Overcrowding occurs when a large number of individuals share a small place. Because of overcrowding, urban congestion is a constant, and it is an element that is growing day by day as more people and immigrants migrate to cities and towns in quest of a better living.

Most individuals from rural or underdeveloped regions have a strong desire to migrate to the city, which usually results in crowding in a small space.

Unemployment in Urbanization

Joblessness is most prevalent in metropolitan areas, and it is much more prevalent among educated individuals. More than half of the world’s unemployed youngsters are thought to dwell in urban areas.

And, while urban earnings are high, the living costs make them appear to be tragically low. The primary reason for urban unemployment is the rising migration of individuals from rural or developing areas to city environments.

Development of Slums

The cost of living in cities is quite expensive. When this is paired with unpredictably high growth and unemployment, the expansion of illegal resident settlements such as slums and squatters occurs.

Fast-paced industrialisation, a shortage of developed land for housing, a significant migration of rural immigrants to the city in pursuit of a better life, and the inflated prices of land beyond the grasp of the urban poor all contribute to the rise of slums and squatters in metropolitan areas.

Water and Sanitation Problems

In most metropolitan areas, insufficient sewerage infrastructure is widespread due to overcrowding and rapid population growth.

In the administration of sewage infrastructure, municipalities and local governments are facing a significant resource issue. As a result, sanitation suffers, sewage flows erratically, and sewage is discharged into nearby streams, rivers, lakes, or oceans.

Communicable illnesses including typhoid, dysentery, plague, and diarrhoea eventually spread rapidly, causing pain and even death. Water shortage is exacerbated by overcrowding when supply falls short of what is required.

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Poor Health and Spread of Diseases

Access to and usage of public health care services in crowded metropolitan regions is influenced by social, economic, and living factors. Slum communities, in particular, suffer from inadequate sanitation and a lack of water supply, making slum residents more vulnerable to infectious illnesses.

Pollution in cities causes a variety of health issues, including allergies, asthma, infertility, foodborne illness, cancer, and even early mortality.

Traffic Congestion for Urbanization

One of the biggest problems faced by increasing numbers of people moving to towns and cities is in the transportation infrastructure. As the population grows, so does the number of cars on the road, resulting in traffic congestion and pollution.

Many individuals in metropolitan regions commute to work, which causes serious traffic congestion, particularly during peak hours. People will also relocate to buy and access other social necessities as cities increase in size, causing traffic congestion and obstruction.

Urban Crime

Resources shortages, overcrowding, poverty rates, unemployment, and a loss of social services and education are all common causes of social issues such as violence, drug misuse, and crime.

Murder, rape, abduction, rioting, assault, theft, burglary, and hijacking are among crimes that are considered to be more prevalent in metropolitan areas. Furthermore, poverty-related crimes are most prevalent in fast-growing metropolitan areas. The calm and tranquillity of cities/towns are usually disrupted by these acts of urban crime.

Solutions to Urbanization

Building Sustainable and Eco-friendly Cities

Governments should enact laws that design and offer ecologically sound cities and smart growth strategies, recognising that people should not live in dangerous or polluting regions.

The goal is to create sustainable cities that have better environmental conditions and safe environments for all urban residents.

Governments must also support and encourage investments in green infrastructure, viable industries, composting and environmental initiatives, pollution control, renewable energy, eco-friendly public transportation, and wastewater reuse and reclamation, as well as an economy based on sustainable settings.

Provision of Essential Services

All residents of metropolitan areas should have access to enough vital social services, such as education, health, cleanliness, and clean water, as well as technology, energy, and food.

The goal is to create and execute job opportunities and wealth-creation activities so that individuals may earn enough money to pay for the services’ upkeep.

The government can also use subsidies to reduce the price of basic healthcare, education, electricity, public transit, communication networks, and technology.

Creation of More Jobs for Urbanization

To mitigate the negative consequences of increasing urbanisation while still protecting natural ecosystems, private investments in environmental resource utilisation and employment creation should be promoted.

More employment for urban populations can be created through tourism promotion and sustainable resource oppression. Foreign and private investment in eco-friendly developmental projects that create jobs may also be eligible for subsidies and incentives.

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Population Control in Urbanization

To assist lower the increased rates of population increase, key stakeholders in metropolitan areas must provide campaigns and counselling for effective medical centres and family welfare.

With the goal of managing illnesses and population increase, medical health clinics geared toward family planning choices must be made available across the whole urban area.

Urbanization in India

Urbanisation in India is largely attributable to the deregulation of its economy in the 1990s, which facilitated the growth of the private sector. Despite the fact that India’s urbanisation is accelerating, barely one-third of the country’s population lives in cities.

As per the 2011 census, India has 53 cities with a population of one million or more, with that number expected to increase to 87 by 2031. A few of these metropolitan regions will grow into significant economic powerhouses, with GDPs exceeding those of nations like Israel, Portugal, and the United Arab Emirates.

Because cities have a high number of people in a limited area, they offer a considerable economy of scale that provides employment, housing, and services, they offer tremendous potential for sustainable development. It is critical to fully achieve Indian cities’ economic, ecological, and social sustainability possibilities.

Level of Urbanization in India

The National Capital Territory of Delhi and the Union Territory of Chandigarh are the most urbanised of all the States and Union territories, with 97.5 percent and 97.25 percent urban population, correspondingly, followed by Daman and Diu (75.2 percent) and Puducherry (68.3 percent).

Goa is currently the most urbanised state in the country, with 62.2 percent of the population living in cities, up from 49.8 percent in 2001. Kerala is another notable example of increasing urbanisation; its urban population is currently 47.7%, up from 25.9% a decade earlier.

Level of Urbanization in the NE States

Mizoram is the most urbanised of the NE states, with 51.5 percent urban population, while its absolute proportion to the country’s overall urban population is only 0.1 percent.

Meanwhile, Sikkim, which was just 11.0 percent urbanised a decade earlier, was over 25% urbanised in 2011. Tamil Nadu remains the most urbanised state in the country, with 48.4% of the population living in cities, followed by Kerala (47.7%), which has surpassed Maharashtra (45.2 percent).

In Which Age Urbanization Commenced?

Urbanization refers to the transformation of rural settlements into cities or urban centres, as well as the rapid expansion of those areas. For reasons that academics have failed to agree on, urbanisation began in ancient Mesopotamia during the Uruk Period (4300-3100 BCE).

How to Make NCERT UPSC Notes on Urbanization?

Making notes is an integral part of the UPSC preparation. Follow the points below to learn how to make notes from NCERT.

Read The Books

When preparing UPSC Notes, the first thing is to study the books without highlighting or writing it down. Alternatively, you’ll have to rewrite everything since you could miss anything crucial. So, take a short look at it and attempt to grasp the main aspects. You would know what is crucial if you studied the curriculum and prior years’ papers. As a result, only take notes on that section during the second reading!

Make Bullet Points

The second reason you should not overlook is bulleted writing. Never write UPSC notes in paragraph style since reading and filtering them would be difficult! As a result, when taking notes, always use bullet points and highlight whatever is important. It will assist you in rapidly filtering information. To make revision easier, use sticky notes to separate the chapters.

Describe in Short Sentences

The second thing you should remember when writing UPSC Notes for NCERTs is to use brief phrases. It is not a good idea to write lengthy sentences since they are difficult to read. Write notes in your primary language. It is not required to rewrite the sentences exactly as they appear in the book. To create your notes clear and brief, rewrite them to make them shorter.

Go Digital

For everything, digital is the new era approach! To write UPSC notes, you should utilise applications like Evernote. It will help you save a lot of time when writing! It also makes it simple to amend or update the notes. You won’t have to worry about physically rescuing them.

Make Flow Charts

Flow charts can be used to replace the wordy content. Whenever feasible, use flow charts since pictographic information is simpler to comprehend and remember than long phrases. Flow charts make it simpler to remember information when there is a series of events, particularly in history. As a result, create flow charts for your UPSC notes.

Keep Revising

Revising your notes on a daily basis serves two purposes. The first is to remember what you’ve learned, and the second is to remember what you’ve written.

Most students, as amusing as it may seem, forget the syntaxes they used or the half-sentences they wrote if they read their notes after a long period! As a result, constantly rewriting your notes to keep them fresh in your mind. Simultaneously, keep it up to date with current events and fresh information.


Current affairs are an important component of UPSC CSE preparation. It is covered under the heading “Issues of National and International Importance” in the Prelims curriculum. As a result, it is critical for Civil Services candidates to acquire a regular practise of reading current events. Read more about the urbanization in India topic here.

Catch all the current affairs and informative articles on UPSC topics on UPSC Pathshala now!

Also Read: What is the Delimitation Commission? UPSC Notes for GS Paper 2

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What is Urbanization and Its Effect on Society? An Important Topic for Upcoming UPSC Exam
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What is Urbanization and Its Effect on Society? An Important Topic for Upcoming UPSC Exam
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Madhurjya Chowdhury

Madhurjya Chowdhury, a web content writer in Ufaber EduTech has a very strong passion for writing and alluring the readers. You can find him writing articles for the betterment of exam aspirants and children. With immense interest in research-based content writing and copywriting, he likes to reach out to more and more people with his creative writing style. On the other side, he is an Electronics and Communication Engineer from LPU, Jalandhar. In his leisure time, he likes to play badminton or read about space discoveries. Apart from this, he is a pro gamer on PC, PS and Mobile gaming platforms.

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