Date of Award

Winter 11-11-2020

Semester of Degree


Document Type

Open Access Dissertation

Degree Name

Ph.D. in Environmental Science


Environmental Science, Division of

Major Professor

M Margaret Bryant

Steering Committee Member

Scott Shannon

Steering Committee Member

Emanuel Carter


I bring a personal history to this study of Baghdad. I lived and worked in Baghdad, and I have the personal connection to the place, history and people. The study investigates the international planning history in the historical capital of Iraq from middle of the twentieth century up to now. The study provides a brief history of the foundation of Baghdad in 762 AD, the characteristics of the Arab-Islamic cities and planning issues of the modern era. A qualitative comparison analysis was the methodology adopted in the study. The city plans of Doxiadis 1958, Polservice 1973, JCCF 1990, and Khatib and Alami 2018 were discussed and analyzed. Comparisons for the four plans were carried out, and an evaluation of what expertise, planning techniques and solutions the four plans brought to Baghdad. The study shows the primary physical planning strategies employed in the four plans, and how the plans addressed population growth. What lessons do the previous plans for Baghdad offer the city today, and can these lessons be transferrable to other Arab-Islamic cities? There is no question that Baghdad is the hub of political, economic, and social activities of the country. Any future study must cover not only the City of Baghdad, but also its metropolitan area, “Greater Baghdad”. Recommendations include a metropolitan development planning study developed in coordination with a national urban policy. Also, Baghdad needs an operative and implementable master plan. Based on what can be learned from many other cases from the past, it is a good chance for the Iraqi people to build a beautiful and robust national capital to match or surpass its glorious past incarnation. This study would help the urban planner, policymaker and researcher to evaluate the previous work of international urban planners, and lessons learned from this set of plans may be useful for the rebuilding of Baghdad today.