Any topic (writer’s choice)

Summarize the main features of both theories. What does each look at (independent variables) to explain urban policy decisionmaking (dependent variables)? What else does each theory say is important for understanding urban politics?
Features and flaws in both theories. What does the theory illustrate about urban life well? What does it miss? You may wish to think of this as what do you think of the utility of each theory: how useful is it for understanding, explaining, and predicting real world events?
For your critique you should review the authors readings where they have presenting their ideas (of course). But also review the readings from Week 3 which provide additional perspectives on these theories from other sources. You shouldn’t need any outside resources for this paper – just the 7 readings assigned thus far, so you won’t need a Works Cited page for this paper, but you should still use APA or MLA citations in the paper when you are quoting, paraphrasing, or drawing on a reading and presenting ideas which are not your own.


Paul E. Peterson, 1981. “The interests of the limited city.” excerpt from City Limits. University of Chicago Press: Chicago.

(Optional: Charles Tiebout, 1956. “A Pure Theory of Local Expenditures.” The Journal of Political Economy, Vol 64. No. 5, pp. 416-424.)
Regime theory approach

Clarence Stone, 2006. “Power and Governance in American Cities.” chapter from City, Politics and Policy, edited by John Pelissaro.

John Mollenkopf, 1994. “How to Study Urban Power.” from A Phoenix in the Ashes. This excerpt taken from The Urban Politics Reader.

Browning, Marshall, and Tabb, 2003. “Introduction – Can people of color achieve equality in city government?” from Racial Politics in American Cities, 3rd Edition, edited by Browning Marshall and Tabb. Longman: New York.
Mollenkopf, 2003. “New York: Still the Great Anomaly.” chapter from Racial Politics in American Cities, 3rd Edition.

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