Dynamics of Urbanization in Nepal
Author: Kamal Devkota Publication Type: Policy Discussion Paper 

Urbanization pattern does not seem geographically uniform across Nepal. Natural expansion of urban areas due to population growth, planned growth of cities through infrastructural development and reclassification of urban centers has expanded the urban areas in Nepal. Nepal‟s urban centers have been facing several socio-economic and infrastructural problems due to lack of policy measures and institutional harmonization. In absence of a strong policy for the regulation and management of rapidly growing, uncontrolled and haphazard urban development has created numerous problems, including deficiencies in basic urban services, encroachment of public lands, slums and sprawling settlement. This paper tracks the patterns and trends of urbanization in Nepal and identifies some key issues related to unplanned urbanization. The paper also highlights mandates to local government in urban management. Some immediate actionable opportunities to contribute towards proper urban planning and governance are recommended. This research was carried out through in-depth literature review, expert consultation and key informant surveys. The paper recommends institutional cooperation among various actors through effective communication along with the multiple use of urban land, an inclusive urban planning policy, and timely investment in urban infrastructures. Furthermore a decentralized policy synchronizing the administrative and policy duties among the central and local level government authorities seems essential. Addressing urban poverty mainly around the slums through informal economy is needed.