Rent Gap Theory

Assignment 1
Value: 20% of final grade
Keywords related to cities, urban social justice, neighbourhood change, and inequality circulate in the everyday conversations and scholarly discourse of planners. Sometimes we use these keywords without knowing their history. With this assignment, choose a keyword (or keyword-like phrase) and dig into its lineage, meaning, contested nature, and implications. Imagine preparing this as a resource to others who might want to know more about the definition, history, and shaping of this concept over time, how it is used today, and any controversy or implications that arise from its deployment.
For this assignment, you will:
1. Key Word – rent-gap theory (Niel Smith)
2. Research the keyword, using scholarly sources (books, academic articles, scholarly encyclopedias and dictionaries). A minimum of 5 sources must be cited (undergraduates – grad students minimum is 8), and you must reference all sources that are drawn upon in writing your paper.
3. Write a short entry that describes your keyword, its history/lineage, how it’s used, and any relevant implications or issues. Because this is short, and many of these concepts are complex, you will have to be selective in what you discuss.
Your paper should introduce and define the concept, mention key authors and/or works associated with it, and describe what it means.
Engage in some analysis of the concept: Discuss debates in the field, controversies related to the use of this concept. Perhaps it is used differently by different people, perhaps it reveals complexities in our cities and society, perhaps it has been rejected entirely as a valid concept in some corners of practice, or embraced in others.
Include a title, your name, the date, page numbers, and a properly-formatted reference list using the APA style guide. Use in-text citations to cite sources that inform your argument.
Stronger grades will be assigned to papers that engage carefully with scholarly literature and reflect thoughtfully and deeply on the concept. Your assignment will be evaluated according to how well you…
1. Describe your topic clearly (6)
2. Analyze your topic (8)
3. Organize, structure, write, and edit your paper thoughtfully and clearly (6)