Karachi: Instant City

October 26th, 2011

With the rapid 21st Century growth of globalization, we've witnessed one of the great migrations of history. Millions of people have moved from rural areas to the cities of the developing world. These cities, some of which didn't even exist twenty years ago, have populations in the millions. In China, for example, there are cities of 10 million people; cities that we don't even know the name of.

The growth of these so called "instant cites" has provided great opportunity, but they also pose enormous challenges, problems and risks. One such city is Karachi in Pakistan. A city that sits not only in a center of development, but also straddles the geopolitical fault lines of its region.

The co-host of NPR's Morning Edition, Steve Inskeep, has been traveling to Karachi since 2002 and has witnessed its growth up close and personal. In his first book, Instant City: Life and Death in Karachi, he takes us inside Karachi as a model of this migration that is changing the world. My conversation with Steve Inskeep: