Articles on informal settlements

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Meeting the challenges of informal settlements, such as this one in Caracas, Venezuela, calls for integrated approaches that cut across urban scales and disciplines. Hesam Kamalipour

When planning falls short: the challenges of informal settlements

Informal settlements are often undocumented or hidden on official maps, but they house about a billion people worldwide. Their existence demands a more sophisticated approach to urban development.
Cities like Dhaka are internally diverse, even contradictory. Such variation extends to the types of economic activity that take place in them. Reuters/Andrew Biraj

Design in the ‘hybrid city’: DIY meets platform urbanism in Dhaka’s informal settlements

As cities trumpet their liveability, creativity and greenness, many informal settlement activities are often relegated to the shadows.
Urban planning was once an Olympic event, although the first gold medal – awarded to Germany’s Alfred Hensel for the Nuremberg stadium – turned out to be an unfortunate choice.

‘No More Hunger’ Games: if only we cared about the real-world Liveability Olympics

Imagine cities competed to eliminate hunger, poverty, unemployment, crime and greenhouse emissions, and to offer housing and transport for all. Don't scoff – urban planning was once an Olympic event.
Are schools the best place to teach life skills? Noor Khamis/Reuters

Kenyan schools reform is a unique chance to rethink life-skills teaching

Thanks to life-skills training, girls who previously believed it improbable that they would go on to secondary school are now allowing themselves to dream about possibilities.
Rioters threw stones and looted shops during a recent protest at the Phomolong informal settlement outside Pretoria. Reuters/Striger

The link between public violence and xenophobia in South Africa

The past decade has shown a strong connection between political protests and the looting of foreign-owned shops in South Africa. Research shows that local leaders use protests to maintain their power.
Some informal settlements in Cape Town are located on or near wetlands. Shutterstock

Resilience in South Africa’s urban water landscape

Many African cities are sites of rapid urbanisation. To ensure that such societies are water resilient, it is necessary to address formal and informal forms of development.

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