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Reframing Cities with Peripheral Settlements under the Decentralization Discourse: The Case of Amman, Jordan

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionScientificpeer-review


Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationRe-City. (Im)possible cities
Subtitle of host publicationDATUTOP
EditorsJuho Rajaniemi, Minna Chudoba
Place of PublicationTampere, Finland
PublisherTampere University of Technology, School of Architecture
Number of pages16
ISBN (Electronic)978-952-15-4144-5
ISBN (Print)978-952-15-4143-8
Publication statusPublished - 2018
Publication typeA4 Article in a conference publication
EventRe-City, 2nd International City Regeneration Congress: "(Im)Possible Cities" -
Duration: 24 Aug 201825 Aug 2018

Publication series

ISSN (Electronic)0359-7105


ConferenceRe-City, 2nd International City Regeneration Congress: "(Im)Possible Cities"


The rapid spatial growth of the urban peripheries of Amman, the
capital of Jordan, calls for an immediate reconsideration of the enforced
planning policies that govern it. This paper therefore casts light on the
implementation of the decentralization discourse in one problematic
area in the Middle East, Amman City, focusing on the administrative
decentralization of decision-making, and the resulting transfer of urban
competencies and urban services.
This research intends to investigate the decentralized
administration and its application in urban planning policy by tracing
the history of one of Amman’s satellite towns, Sahab. The study will
assess the effectiveness and success of the policy implementation, and the
relationship between the Amman City core and its marginal urban node,
spatially and functionally. The study has used the international literature,
data published from a number of Jordanian public departments, and
structured interviews conducted with planners from Greater Amman
Municipality (GAM), the Sahab municipality, and random sampling of
the local community.
The results of this research indicate that the deep-rooted centralized
authority of Greater Amman Municipality (GAM) clearly runs contrary
to the hoped for decentralization approach. Accordingly, the current
urban policies have failed, on the administrative and planning level, to
create an autonomous or even semi-autonomous urban node. Instead,
an unbalanced relationship can be observed between the Amman City
core and Sahab, the satellite town. Finally, the paper closes by calling for
appropriate institutionalization of the development plans and realistic
implementation of spatial policies


  • urban policies, decentralization approach, satellite town

Publication forum classification

Field of science, Statistics Finland