• The changing spatial economy of cities: An exploratory analysis of Cape Town

    The spatial economy of South African cities is generally believed to be experiencing selective deconcentration, which may exacerbate social inequality because of the physical disconnection between jobs and population. This paper assesses whether the locational pattern of economic activity across Cape Town is following this trajectory, using data from the Regional Service Council levies between 2001 and 2005. One of the main findings is that the city centre and areas close to the centre have maintained their economic dominance, therefore Cape Town remains a monocentric city. Yet the pattern of recent growth is more dispersed…

  • Reshaping Cities, Rebuilding Nations: The Role of National Urban Policies

    The challenges of rapid urbanisation in large parts of Africa are beyond the capacity of local government to manage. The paper explores the arguments for a national urban policy to complement local strategies, reflecting the unique power of the central state and the special circumstances of cities. With appropriate support, urbanisation could become a more positive force for economic and human development. Recent experience in South Africa illustrates some of the difficulties and possibilities for agreeing a systematic approach to planning and managing…

  • The Urban Transition In Ghana: Urbanization, National Development and Poverty Reduction

    The first point to note is that the intensive urbanization of the industrial nations which occurred in the past is currently under way in today’s developing countries. Although the rate of urbanization in the developing world is proceeding at a fairly comparable rate as that of the industrial nations in the heyday of their rapid urbanization, the rate of population growth of cities in developing countries as distinct from urbanization is rather unprecedented (Songsore,2003a ;Davis, 1967;Satterthwaite,1996; Preston, 1979). In 2008, for the first time in history, more than half of the world’s population,3.3 billion people, are living in…

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