"With the rapid pace of urbanization in India, adequate and reliable data is required to understand the complex forces shaping the cities and to implement effective urban policies. However, there is a glaring dearth of information and data in this area. This book attempts to fill this vacuum. Given the importance of cities in Karnataka's economic growth and development, the book undertakes a review of 15 major cities in the state. It develops indicators and benchmarks for six thematic areas that capture the dynamics and potential of urban areas: (i) history and governance; (ii) demographics; (iii) economic dimensions; (iv) infrastructure and public services; (v) resources; and (vi) quality of life. Providing a comparison of the cities along these dimensions, the book underlines the importance of sharing best practices and fostering competition among cities for infrastructure, public services, and investment. It also includes factsheets on each of the 15 cities, which provide a snapshot of key socio-economic dimensions. This book is an important starting point for researchers and policymakers to start thinking analytically and systematically for better cities, public services, and financing of services."--Publisher's website.