Imperatives for a Holistic
African Urbanisation Agenda

UN Habitat, ‘Take Off’ Conference,
Nairobi, Dec 2013
Prof Susan Pa...
Competing Views on African Urbanisation
Urban bias

Circular migration

Urban growth

Analysis
Cities get too much
attenti...
Urban growth and
urbanisation will shape the
development challenges of the
21st C

ASSUMPTION: CITIES HAVE TO
DOMINATE THE...
Competing, overlapping and
complimentary imperatives for an
African urban agenda

• Demographic – Africa’s urban moment, a...
Reorienting a development
agenda to accommodate the new
African realities and its urban
future is not as simple as it seem...
1. There is no single process of
urbanisation
• Differences
between Africa
and elsewhere
• Differences
within Africa
• Dif...
Africa’s population is large (965 million in
2007) and growing fast (3.3%p.a)
Urbanization is the key overall trend

Conse...
Rapid growth of small and medium cities
as well as the emergence of mega city
regions requires policy flexibility
Annual g...
Latin America and the Caribbean
6

5

4

Growth in urban
population share

3

Natural population
growth

2

1

0
1950- 195...
African fertility rates are high because
…
 Lack of access to
affordable health care
 Lack of education
among women
 No...
Urban agendas are sensitive to absolute increases in the number
of urban residents & changes in household size
2. Environment: Cities are an integral
part of our FUTURE EARTH
Demography
Climate
change

Migration

Future Earth:
Cities...
Every African city depends on its’
ecosystem services
Global Environmental Change … key
driver of the new African urban agenda
Natural growth of urban populations is a more sig...
Global Environmental Change raises
fundamental questions about the
African settlement system
• Rural focus of climate
adap...
3. Cities drive economic growth
The global urban profile is shifting fast.
What is the future of urban welfare, given population and
economic growth in ci...
trends

Africa has growing inequality, driven by increasing
wealth and poverty:
Gini coefficient for selected African citi...
4. Urban Poverty Rates - SADC
Country

Urban
growth Rate
(%)

Urban
Poverty
(%)

Botswana

6.0

9.0

Lesotho

3.5

46.0

M...
The growth of the URBAN poor shifts
the locus of food (in)security
• World Food Summits in 1996 and 2002 (and MDG No 1) ma...
77% chronically food insecure
Household Food Security Status for 11 Cities
100
90
80
70
60
50
40
30
20
10
0

77%

Food sec...
Health implications of
an urban lifestyle
among Africa’s poor?

• Massive shift in the burden of
disease
• Urbanisation th...
5. Infrastructure & services; urban
crisis or dividend?
African cities need effective
public infrastructure: streets
Infrastructure demand US$bn in
African cities (Pieterse and Smit, 2014)
5. Governance
African Cities have multiple actors
governing & exercising power
Key issues:
No comprehensive
urban tax base
Dual/overla...
CONCLUSION
Establishing an
urban agenda
For Africa
is imperative,
But competing
pressures means
it will not be easy
and wi...
Imperatives for a holistic urban agenda
Imperatives for a holistic urban agenda
Imperatives for a holistic urban agenda
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Imperatives for a holistic urban agenda

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Reorienting a development agenda to accommodate the new African realities and its urban future is not as simple as it seems says Dr Sue Parnell in this presentation given at the UNHabitat "Take Off" Conference in Nairobi, December 2013

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Imperatives for a holistic urban agenda

  1. 1. Imperatives for a Holistic African Urbanisation Agenda UN Habitat, ‘Take Off’ Conference, Nairobi, Dec 2013 Prof Susan Parnell University of Cape Town (Geography and African Centre for Cities)
  2. 2. Competing Views on African Urbanisation Urban bias Circular migration Urban growth Analysis Cities get too much attention given that rural poverty is most extreme Analysis Poverty causes people to move between town and countryside vs split livelihoods causes poverty Analysis Cities are where the majority live Cities offer the best possibilities for poverty mitigation, growth & sustainability Policy responses: •Facilitate movement and split liveihood strategies Policy responses: •Improve urban planning and governance •Introduce urban welfare regimes/tax/incentives •End urban bias and influx controls •Build sustainable, resilient and equitable urban places Urbanisation without industrialisation is bad Policy responses: • Rural/agricultural development •Protect the peasantry •Equalize rural/urban service levels •Prevent urbanisation •Don’t force the poor to hold 2 bases
  3. 3. Urban growth and urbanisation will shape the development challenges of the 21st C ASSUMPTION: CITIES HAVE TO DOMINATE THE NEW DEVELOPMENT AGENDA • • • Rural poverty will not disappear Some (circular) migration is inevitable Cities will grow and become even more important. CITIES WHERE, INCREASINGLY, THE MAJORITY OF PEOPLE LIVE, WORK and CONSUME HAVE BEEN UNDERREPRESENTED IN THE DEVELOPMENT AGENDA. – – – – – – – – – – – Health Infrastructure Climate change The economy Social norms Environmental risk profile Conflict patterns Politics Demographics Good governance Post conflict reconstruction
  4. 4. Competing, overlapping and complimentary imperatives for an African urban agenda • Demographic – Africa’s urban moment, a unique African urban trajectory? • Environment – African cities especially vulnerable? • Economic –new middle class – the urban dividend? • Social – urban poverty and food insecurity • Physical– infrastructure & service needs & opportunities • Governance – anti-urbanism, weak sub national states & complex governance
  5. 5. Reorienting a development agenda to accommodate the new African realities and its urban future is not as simple as it seems
  6. 6. 1. There is no single process of urbanisation • Differences between Africa and elsewhere • Differences within Africa • Differences within regions of a particular African nations
  7. 7. Africa’s population is large (965 million in 2007) and growing fast (3.3%p.a) Urbanization is the key overall trend Consensus – the data is poor and extreme caution is necessary
  8. 8. Rapid growth of small and medium cities as well as the emergence of mega city regions requires policy flexibility Annual growth rate of the world's cities by region and size (1990 - 2000 around) 5.0% Figures shown in the graph are developing regions average. 4.0% 3.00% 3.0% 2.40% 2.49% 2.49% 1.81% 2.0% 1.0% 0.0% Small cities Africa LAC Intermediate cities Asia (China) (India) Big cities Developing regions Large cities Developed regions Total World total Note: cities w ith more than 100,000 inhabitants Source: UN Statistics Division, Demographic Yearbook, UN Population Division, World Urbanization
  9. 9. Latin America and the Caribbean 6 5 4 Growth in urban population share 3 Natural population growth 2 1 0 1950- 1955- 1960- 1965- 1970- 1975- 1980- 1985- 1990- 1995- 2000- 2005- 2010- 2015- 2020- 2025- 2030- 2035- 2040- 20451955 1960 1965 1970 1975 1980 1985 1990 1995 2000 2005 2010 2015 2020 2025 2030 2035 2040 2045 2050 Asia 6 The assumption that urbanisation will reduce population growth may or may not not hold across Africa: The nature of the demographic transition varies across regions, with natural population growth a much more important variable in Africa ….does this Africa matter?? 6 5 5 3 2 Growth in urban population share 4 Urban growth rates (%) 4 3 2 Natural population growth 1 1 19 50 -1 95 19 5 55 -1 96 19 0 60 -1 96 19 5 65 -1 97 19 0 70 -1 97 19 5 75 -1 98 19 0 80 -1 98 19 5 85 -1 99 19 0 90 -1 99 19 5 95 -2 00 20 0 00 -2 00 20 5 05 -2 01 20 0 10 -2 01 20 5 15 -2 02 20 0 20 -2 02 20 5 25 -2 03 20 0 30 -2 03 20 5 35 -2 04 20 0 40 -2 04 20 5 45 -2 05 0 19 50 0 -1 19 95 55 5 -1 19 96 60 0 -1 19 96 65 5 -1 19 97 70 0 -1 19 97 75 5 -1 19 98 80 0 -1 19 98 85 5 -1 19 99 90 0 -1 19 99 95 5 -2 20 00 00 0 -2 20 00 05 5 -2 20 01 10 0 -2 20 01 15 5 -2 20 02 20 0 -2 20 02 25 5 -2 20 03 30 0 -2 20 03 35 5 -2 20 04 40 0 -2 20 04 45 5 -2 05 0 0 Growth in urban population share Natural population growth
  10. 10. African fertility rates are high because …  Lack of access to affordable health care  Lack of education among women  No urban jobs, social safety nets or security  Patriarchy  The widespread commoditization of sex
  11. 11. Urban agendas are sensitive to absolute increases in the number of urban residents & changes in household size
  12. 12. 2. Environment: Cities are an integral part of our FUTURE EARTH Demography Climate change Migration Future Earth: Cities are a hot spot of the interface between climate, demography, the economy, human consumption of ecosystem service and the built environment - complexity of complexity
  13. 13. Every African city depends on its’ ecosystem services
  14. 14. Global Environmental Change … key driver of the new African urban agenda Natural growth of urban populations is a more significant driver of vulnerability in Africa than migration  The impacts of GEC African migration will be felt in African not globally  The impacts of GEC migration will be felt in cities not just the countryside  GEC challenges cities face are not simply migration induced
  15. 15. Global Environmental Change raises fundamental questions about the African settlement system • Rural focus of climate adaptation work is outmoded • Given where growth is focused, the national urban system needs attenton • Coastal City vulnerabiity • The protective/adaptive role of urban planning • The importance of upholding urban resource integrity
  16. 16. 3. Cities drive economic growth
  17. 17. The global urban profile is shifting fast. What is the future of urban welfare, given population and economic growth in cities of the global south?
  18. 18. trends Africa has growing inequality, driven by increasing wealth and poverty: Gini coefficient for selected African cities
  19. 19. 4. Urban Poverty Rates - SADC Country Urban growth Rate (%) Urban Poverty (%) Botswana 6.0 9.0 Lesotho 3.5 46.0 Malawi 6.0 54.0 Mozambique 6.3 62.0 Namibia 4.2 40.0 South Africa (JHB) 4.1 40.0 Swaziland 5.5 66.0 Zambia 3.6 52.0 Zimbabwe 5.0 70.0
  20. 20. The growth of the URBAN poor shifts the locus of food (in)security • World Food Summits in 1996 and 2002 (and MDG No 1) made commitment to reducing no of undernourished people (800 million) by 50% by 2015. • 2006 Mid-Term Review of Committee on World Food Security found “progress has been negligible.” • 2009, following global food price hikes and world economic crisis, FAO estimates number of food insecure exceeds 1 billion.
  21. 21. 77% chronically food insecure Household Food Security Status for 11 Cities 100 90 80 70 60 50 40 30 20 10 0 77% Food secure Food insecure
  22. 22. Health implications of an urban lifestyle among Africa’s poor? • Massive shift in the burden of disease • Urbanisation the burden of disease become more complex – What people eat, how they exercise what work they do, what pollutants they are exposed to (water, sanitation but also air) – Age cohorts shift – Exposure to different risks • Urbanisation alters what the environmental determinants of health are – Crime, traffic, pollution etc • Urbanisation shifts the nature of the health care response and organisation • Urbanisation creates new opportunities for health education
  23. 23. 5. Infrastructure & services; urban crisis or dividend?
  24. 24. African cities need effective public infrastructure: streets
  25. 25. Infrastructure demand US$bn in African cities (Pieterse and Smit, 2014)
  26. 26. 5. Governance
  27. 27. African Cities have multiple actors governing & exercising power Key issues: No comprehensive urban tax base Dual/overlapping land tenure, zoning, land use regulation & enforcement Lack of transparency and corruption
  28. 28. CONCLUSION Establishing an urban agenda For Africa is imperative, But competing pressures means it will not be easy and will need considerable political commitment
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