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Lecture 4

WEEK 4 - The Prevalence of Slums.docx

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GEOG 3050
Kate Parizeau

WEEK 4 The Prevalence of Slums  Davis A Global Slum Census - Overcrowding, poor/informal housing, inadequate access to safe water& sanitation, insecurity of tenure (purely physical & legal characteristics, ignores social dimensions) – usually economic and social marginality - 6% city popn in developed countries, 78.2% in least-developed countries (2/3 global urban popn), ¼ urbanites in “absolute” poverty (less than 1$ per day) - Highest slum popns Ethiopia 99.4%, Chad, Afghanistan, Nepal - Fastest growing slums in Russia (dependent on a single now-closed industry) - Not all urban poor live in slums and not all slum dwellers are poor – some of poor live just outside the slums - Slum popns undercounted in data A Slum Typology - “Megaslums” when shanty-towns and squatter communities merge in continuous informal housing & poverty, usually on the urban periphery - Some slums have long histories, but most have grown up since the 1960s - Urban poor have to solve issue of optimizing housing cost, tenure security, quality of shelter, journey to work, and personal safety (often being near job more important than a roof, others free land worth bad commutes) - EX. Peru: rural immigrants move from the province to the city center (location at any price) to find jobs, then w employment security move to the periphery (where ownership is attainable) - EX. Cairo: 4 basic shelter strategies  1. if access to central job market important the household considers apartment renting (expensive/can never own) 2. centrally located but informal shelter (small rooftop room, bad enviro, cheap, good access to jobs, no secure tenure) – eventually forced to move to squatter camps or semi-formal housing 3. squat on publicly owned land (cheapest)- high cost commute, govt neglect infra 4. Buy a house site in one of the vast semi-informal devts w legal tenure but w/o official building authorization, far from jobs, but basic municipal services - American “donut” shaped cities: poor in derelict cores/inner suburbs - European “saucer” cities w immigrant/unemployed popns in high-rise housing on the urban outskirts 1. Inner City Poverty - “Hand me down" housing: converted mansions and villas, usually no municipal services o Used to shoo poor from centre, now becoming popular for
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