Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 12

informal settlements Related Abstracts

12 Understanding Informal Settlements: The Role of Geo-Information Tools

Authors: Musyimi Mbathi


Information regarding social, political, demographic, economic and other attributes of human settlement is important for decision makers at all levels of planning, as they have to grapple with dynamic environments often associated with settlements. At the local level, it is particularly important for both communities and urban managers to have accurate and reliable information regarding all planning attributes. Settlement mapping, in particular, informal settlements mapping in Kenya, has over the past few years been carried out using modern tools like Geographic information systems (GIS) and remote sensing for spatial data analysis and planning. GIS tools offer a platform for integration of spatial and non-spatial data as well as visualisation of the settlements. The capabilities offered by these tools have enabled communities to participate especially in the planning and management of new infrastructure as well as settlement upgrading. Land tenure based projects within informal settlements have also relied on GIS and related tools with considerable success. Additionally, the adoption of participatory approaches and use of geo-information tools helped to provide a basis for all inclusive planning thus promoting accountability, transparency, legitimacy, and other dimensions of governance within human settlement planning. The paper examines the context and application of geo-information tools for planning within low-income settlements of Kenya. A case study of Kiambiu settlement will be used to demonstrate how the tools have been applied for planning and decision-making purposes.

Keywords: Governance, GIS, Modern Tools, informal settlements

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11 Effect of Urban Informal Settlements and Outdoor Advertisement on the Quality of Built Environment and Urban Upgrading in Nigeria

Authors: Amao Funmilayo Lanrewaju, T. Ogunlade


The paper examines the causes and characteristics of informal settlements and outdoor advertisement in the evaluation of quality of environment. The paper identifies the problems that have aided informal settlements to: Urbanization, poverty, growth of informal sector, non-affordability of land and housing shortage. The paper asserts that the informal settlements have serious adverse effects on the people’s health, their built environment and quality of life. The secondary data was obtained from books, journals and seminar papers. The paper argues that, although the urban upgrading possesses great potential for improving quality of built environment in informal settlements, there is a need to repackage the upgrading exercise so that majority can benefit from it. It is necessary to incorporate community participation into the urban upgrading in order to assist the very poor that cannot take care of their housing consumption needs. Therefore, government is encouraged to see informal settlements as a solution to new city planning rather than problem to the urban areas. This paper suggests the implementation of policies and planning, physical infrastructural development, social economic improvement, environment and health improvement. Government, private and communities interventions on informal settlements are required in order to prevent further decay for sustainable development.

Keywords: urban upgrading, informal settlements, quality of environment, outdoor advertisement

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10 Can Urbanisation Be the Cause for Increasing Urban Poverty: An Exploratory Analysis for India

Authors: Sarmistha Singh


An analysis of trend of urbanization and urban poverty in recent decades is showing that a distinctly reducing rural poverty and increasing in urban areas. It can be argued that the higher the urbanization fuelled by the urban migration to city, which is picking up people from less skilled, education so they faced obstacle to enter into the mainstream economy of city. The share of workforce in economy is higher; in contrast it remains as negligence. At the same time, less wages, absence of social security, social dialogue make them insecure. The vulnerability in their livelihood found. So the paper explores the relation of urbanization and urban poverty in the city, in other words how the urbanization process affecting the urban space in creating the number of poor people in the city. The central focus is the mobility of people with less education and skilled with motive of job search and better livelihood. In many studies found the higher the urbanization and higher the urban poverty in city. In other words, poverty is the impact of urbanization. The strategy of urban inequality through ‘dispersal of concentration’ by the World Bank and others, need to be examined.

Keywords: Mobility, Urbanization, Urban poverty, informal settlements, informal worker

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9 In-Situ Redevelopment in Urban India: Two Case Studies from Delhi and Mumbai

Authors: Ashok kumar, Anjali Sharma


As cities grow and expand spatially, redevelopment in urban India is beginning to emerge as a new mode of urban expansion sweeping low-income informal settlements. This paper examines the extent and nature of expanding urban frontier before examining implications for the families living in these settlements. Displacement of these families may appear to be an obvious consequence. However, we have conducted ethnographic studies over the past several months in a Delhi slum named Kathputli Colony, Delhi. In depth analysis of the study for this slum appears to present a variegated set of consequences for the residents of informal settlements including loss of livelihoods, dismantling of family ties, and general anxiety arising out of uncertainty about resettlement. Apart from Delhi case study, we also compare and contrast another redevelopment case from Mumbai located at Bhendi Bazar. These examples from the two mega cities of Mumbai and Delhi are analysed to understand and explore expanding urban frontiers and their consequences for informing future public policy.

Keywords: Urban, Policy, Redevelopment, informal settlements

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8 Proposing of an Adaptable Land Readjustment Model for Developing of the Informal Settlements in Kabul City

Authors: Habibi Said Mustafa, Hiroko Ono


Since 2006, Afghanistan is dealing with one of the most dramatic trend of urban movement in its history, cities and towns are expanding in size and number. Kabul is the capital of Afghanistan and as well as the fast-growing city in the Asia. The influx of the returnees from neighbor countries and other provinces of Afghanistan caused high rate of artificial growth which slums increased. As an unwanted consequence of this growth, today informal settlements have covered a vast portion of the city. Land Readjustment (LR) has proved to be an important tool for developing informal settlements and reorganizing urban areas but its implementation always varies from country to country and region to region within the countries. Consequently, to successfully develop the informal settlements in Kabul, we need to define an Afghan model of LR specifically for Afghanistan which needs to incorporate all those factors related to the socio-economic condition of the country. For this purpose, a part of the old city of Kabul has selected as a study area which is located near the Central Business District (CBD). After the further analysis and incorporating all needed factors, the result shows a positive potential for the implementation of an adaptable Land Readjustment model for Kabul city which is more sustainable and socio-economically friendly. It will enhance quality of life and provide better urban services for the residents. Moreover, it will set a vision and criteria by which sustainable developments shall proceed in other similar informal settlements of Kabul.

Keywords: Preservation, Adaptation, informal settlements, land readjustment, Kabul

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7 Informal Green Infrastructure as Mobility Enabler in Informal Settlements of Quito

Authors: Ignacio W. Loor


In the context of informal settlements in Quito, this paper provides evidence that slopes and deep ravines typical of Andean cities, around which marginalized urban communities sit, constitute a platform for green infrastructure that supports mobility for pedestrians in an incremental fashion. This is informally shaped green infrastructure that provides connectivity to other mobility infrastructures such as roads and public transport, which permits relegated dwellers reach their daily destinations and reclaim their rights to the city. This is relevant in that walking has been increasingly neglected as a viable mean of transport in Latin American cities, in favor of rather motorized means, for which the mobility benefits of green infrastructure have remained invisible to policymakers, contributing to the progressive isolation of informal settlements. This research leverages greatly on an ecological rejuvenation programme led by the municipality of Quito and the Andean Corporation for Development (CAN) intended for rehabilitating the ecological functionalities of ravines. Accordingly, four ravines in different stages of rejuvenation were chosen, in order to through ethnographic methods, capture the practices they support to dwellers of informal settlements across different stages, particularly in terms of issues of mobility. Then, by presenting fragments of interviews, description of observed phenomena, photographs and narratives published in institutional reports and media, the production process of mobility infrastructure over unoccupied slopes and ravines, and the roles that this infrastructure plays in the mobility of dwellers and their quotidian practices are explained. For informal settlements, which normally feature scant urban infrastructure, mobility embodies an unfavourable driver for the possibilities of dwellers to actively participate in the social, economic and political dimensions of the city, for which their rights to the city are widely neglected. Nevertheless, informal green infrastructure for mobility provides some alleviation. This infrastructure is incremental, since its features and usability gradually evolves as users put into it knowledge, labour, devices, and connectivity to other infrastructures in different dimensions which increment its dependability. This is evidenced in the diffusion of knowledge of trails and routes of footpaths among users, the implementation of linking stairs and bridges, the improved access by producing public spaces adjacent to the ravines, the illuminating of surrounding roads, and ultimately, the restoring of ecological functions of ravines. However, the perpetuity of this type of infrastructure is also fragile and vulnerable to the course of urbanisation, densification, and expansion of gated privatised spaces.

Keywords: Urban Mobility, Green Infrastructure, Walkability, informal settlements

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6 The Relationship between Violence against Women in the Family and Common Mental Disorders in Urban Informal Settlements of Mumbai, India: A Cross-Sectional Study

Authors: Abigail Bentley, Audrey Prost, Nayreen Daruwalla, Apoorwa Gupta, David Osrin


BACKGROUND: Intimate partner violence (IPV) can impact a woman’s physical, reproductive and mental health, including common mental disorders such as anxiety and depression. However, people other than an intimate partner may also perpetrate violence against women in the family, particularly in India. This study aims to investigate the relationship between experiences of violence perpetrated by the husband and other members of the wider household and symptoms of common mental disorders in women residing in informal settlement (slum) areas of Mumbai. METHODS: Experiences of violence were assessed through a detailed cross-sectional survey of 598 women, including questions about specific acts of emotional, economic, physical and sexual violence across different time points in the woman’s life and the main perpetrator of each act. Symptoms of common mental disorders were assessed using the 12-item General Health Questionnaire (GHQ-12). The GHQ-12 scores were divided into four groups and the relationship between experiences of each type of violence in the last 12 months and GHQ-12 score group was analyzed using ordinal logistic regression, adjusted for the woman’s age and clustering. RESULTS: 482 (81%) women consented to interview. On average, they were 28.5 years old, had completed 7 years of education and had been married 9 years. 88% were Muslim and 47% lived in joint and 53% in nuclear families. 44% of women had experienced at least one act of violence in their lifetime (33% emotional, 22% economic, 23% physical, 12% sexual). 7% had a high GHQ-12 score (6 or above). For violence experiences in the last 12 months, the odds of being in the highest GHQ-12 score group versus the lower groups combined were 13.1 for emotional violence, 6.5 for economic, 5.7 for physical and 6.3 for sexual (p<0.001 for all outcomes). DISCUSSION: The high level of violence reported across the lifetime could be due to the detailed assessment of violent acts at multiple time points and the inclusion of perpetrators within the family other than the husband. Each type of violence was associated with greater odds of a higher GHQ-12 score and therefore more symptoms of common mental disorders. Emotional violence was far more strongly associated with symptoms of common mental disorders than physical or sexual violence. However, it is not possible to attribute causal directionality to the association. Further work to investigate the relationship between differing severity of violence experiences and women’s mental health and the components of emotional violence that make it so strongly associated with symptoms of common mental disorders would be beneficial.

Keywords: Mental Health, Family Violence, India, Violence Against Women, informal settlements, common mental disorders

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5 The Relationship between Violence against Women and Levels of Self-Esteem in Urban Informal Settlements of Mumbai, India: A Cross-Sectional Study

Authors: A. Bentley, A. Prost, N. Daruwalla, D. Osrin


Background: This study aims to investigate the relationship between experiences of violence against women in the family, and levels of self-esteem in women residing in informal settlement (slum) areas of Mumbai, India. The authors hypothesise that violence against women in Indian households extends beyond that of intimate partner violence (IPV), to include other members of the family and that experiences of violence are associated with lower levels of self-esteem. Methods: Experiences of violence were assessed through a cross-sectional survey of 598 women, including questions about specific acts of emotional, economic, physical and sexual violence across different time points, and the main perpetrator of each. Self-esteem was assessed using the Rosenberg self-esteem questionnaire. A global score for self-esteem was calculated and the relationship between violence in the past year and Rosenberg self-esteem score was assessed using multivariable linear regression models, adjusted for years of education completed, and clustering using robust standard errors. Results: 482 (81%) women consented to interview. On average, they were 28.5 years old, had completed 6 years of education and had been married 9.5 years. 88% were Muslim and 46% lived in joint families. 44% of women had experienced at least one act of violence in their lifetime (33% emotional, 22% economic, 24% physical, 12% sexual). Of the women who experienced violence after marriage, 70% cited a perpetrator other than the husband for at least one of the acts. 5% had low self-esteem (Rosenberg score < 15). For women who experienced emotional violence in the past year, the Rosenberg score was 2.6 points lower (p < 0.001). It was 1.2 points lower (p = 0.03) for women who experienced economic violence. For physical or sexual violence in the past year, no statistically significant relationship with Rosenberg score was seen. However, for a one-unit increase in the number of different acts of each type of violence experienced in the past year, a decrease in Rosenberg score was seen (-0.62 for emotional, -0.76 for economic, -0.53 for physical and -0.47 for sexual; p < 0.05 for all). Discussion: The high prevalence of violence experiences across the lifetime was likely due to the detailed assessment of violence and the inclusion of perpetrators within the family other than the husband. Experiences of emotional or economic violence in the past year were associated with lower Rosenberg scores and therefore lower self-esteem, but no relationship was seen between experiences of physical or sexual violence and Rosenberg score overall. For all types of violence in the past year, a greater number of different acts were associated with a decrease in Rosenberg score. Emotional violence showed the strongest relationship with self-esteem, but for all types of violence the more complex the pattern of perpetration with different methods used, the lower the levels of self-esteem. Due to the cross-sectional nature of the study causal directionality cannot be attributed. Further work to investigate the relationship between severity of violence and self-esteem and whether self-esteem mediates relationships between violence and poorer mental health would be beneficial.

Keywords: Family Violence, India, Violence Against Women, self-esteem, informal settlements, Rosenberg self-esteem scale

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4 Community’s Role in Slum Development: A Case Study of the Kabul Old City

Authors: Habibi Said Mustafa, Hiroko Ono


Kabul, the capital of Afghanistan, has witnessed a major population growth in the last decades which caused a significant increase in the number of informal settlements. The residents are suffering from many problems such as poor infrastructure, shortage of public facilities, depriving of the sense of ownership and facing much environmental degradation. Even though majority of the residents are living in such condition, the government response has been quite weak. The government’s main planning strategy has been upgrading in the form of provision of facilities and improving elements of physical infrastructure, unfortunately most of the projects which had not community’s support, faced with lots of challenges such as people’s resistance or even in some cases the project rather than solving the problem, compounded them to a worse condition. A major reason as to why many projects have not been effective in achieving certain objectives in the past is the results of local people were not being involved. Community participation plays an important role in slum development projects. The development of an integrated urban development concept these days without the mobilization of participants and community seems difficult and impossible. Therefore this paper looks into factors and methods which can help in creating a participatory approach for developing the slums in Kabul city. Furthermore, it describes the result of a questionnaire which was conducted on a part of the Kabul Old City due to hear resident’s problem related to the slum upgrading and collect their opinions on this regard. The research also points out some factors which can severely hamper the successful implementation of a slum upgrading project if not adequately addressed.

Keywords: community empowerment, people participation, informal settlements, job opportunities

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3 Analysis and the Fair Distribution Modeling of Urban Facilities in Kabul City

Authors: Hiroko Ono, Fakhrullah Sarwari, Ansari Mohammad Reza


Our world is fast heading toward being a predominantly urban planet. This can be a double-edged sword reality where it is as much frightening as it seems interesting. Moreover, a look to the current predictions and taking into the consideration the fact that about 90 percent of the coming urbanization is going to be absorbed by the towns and the cities of the developing countries of Asia and Africa, directly provide us the clues to assume a much more tragic ending to this story than to the happy one. Likewise, in a situation wherein most of these countries are still severely struggling to find the proper answer to their very first initial questions of urbanization—e.g. how to provide the essential structure for their cities, define the regulation, or even design the proper pattern on how the cities should be expanded—thus it is not weird to claim that most of the coming urbanization of the world is going to happen informally. This reality could not only bring the feature, landscape or the picture of the cities of the future under the doubt but at the same time provide the ground for the rise of a bunch of other essential questions of how the facilities would be distributed in these cities, or how fair will this pattern of distribution be. Kabul the capital of Afghanistan, as a city located in the developing world that its process of urbanization has been starting since 2001 and currently hold the position to be the fifth fastest growing city in the world, contained to a considerable slum ratio of 0.7—that means about 70 percent of its population is living in the informal areas—subsequently could be a very good case study to put this questions into the research and find out how the informal development of a city can lead to the unfair and unbalanced distribution of its facilities. Likewise, in this study we tried our best to first propose the ideal model for the fair distribution of the facilities in the Kabul city—where all the citizens have the same equal chance of access to the facilities—and then evaluate the situation of the city based on how fair the facilities are currently distributed therein. We subsequently did it by the comparative analysis between the existing facility rate in the formal and informal areas of the city to the one that was proposed as the fair ideal model.

Keywords: Afghanistan, informal settlements, Kabul, facility distribution, formal settlements

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2 Assessing the Contribution of Informal Buildings to Energy Inefficiency in Kenya: A Case of Mukuru Slums

Authors: Bessy Thuranira


Buildings, as they are designed and used, may contribute to serious environmental problems because of excessive consumption of energy and other natural resources. Buildings in the informal settlements particularly, due to their unplanned physical structure and design, have significantly contributed the global energy problematic scenario typified by high-level inefficiencies. Energy used in buildings in Africa is estimated to be the highest of the total national electricity consumption. Over the last decade, assessments of energy consumption and efficiency/inefficiency has focused on formal and modern buildings. This study seeks to go off the beaten path, by focusing on energy use in informal settlements. Operationally, it sought to establish the contribution of informal buildings in the overall energy consumption in the city and the country at large. This study was carried out in Mukuru kwa Reuben informal settlement where there is distinct manifestation of different settlement morphologies within a small locality. The research narrowed down to three villages (Mombasa, Kosovo and Railway villages) within the settlement, that were representative of the different slum housing typologies. Due to the unpredictability nature and informality in slums, this study takes a multi-methodology approach. Detailed energy audits and measurements are carried out to predict total building consumption, and document building design and envelope, typology, materials and occupancy levels. Moreover, the study uses semi-structured interviews and to access energy supply, cost, access and consumption patterns. Observations and photographs are also used to shed more light on these parameters. The study reveals the high energy inefficiencies in slum buildings mainly related to sub-standard equipment and appliances, building design and settlement layout, poor access and utilization/consumption patterns of energy. The impacts of this inefficiency are high economic burden to the poor, high levels of pollution, lack of thermal comfort and emissions to the environment. The study highlights a set of urban planning and building design principles that can be used to retrofit slums into more energy efficient settlements. The study explores principles of responsive settlement layouts/plans and appropriate building designs that use the beneficial elements of nature to achieve natural lighting, natural ventilation, and solar control to create thermally comfortable, energy efficient, and environmentally responsive buildings/settlements. As energy efficiency in informal settlements is a relatively less explored area of efficiency, it requires further research and policy recommendations, for which this paper will set a background.

Keywords: Renewable Energy, Energy Efficiency, informal settlements, settlement layout

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1 Stakeholder Engagement to Address Urban Health Systems Gaps for Migrants

Authors: A. Chandra, M. Arthur, L. Mize, A. Pomeroy-Stevens


Background: Lower and middle-income countries (LMICs) in Asia face rapid urbanization resulting in both economic opportunities (the urban advantage) and emerging health challenges. Urban health risks are magnified in informal settlements and include infectious disease outbreaks, inadequate access to health services, and poor air quality. Over the coming years, urban spaces in Asia will face accelerating public health risks related to migration, climate change, and environmental health. These challenges are complex and require multi-sectoral and multi-stakeholder solutions. The Building Health Cities (BHC) program is funded by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) to work with smart city initiatives in the Asia region. BHC approaches urban health challenges by addressing policies, planning, and services through a health equity lens, with a particular focus on informal settlements and migrant communities. The program works to develop data-driven decision-making, build inclusivity through stakeholder engagement, and facilitate the uptake of appropriate technology. Methodology: The BHC program has partnered with the smart city initiatives of Indore in India, Makassar in Indonesia, and Da Nang in Vietnam. Implementing partners support municipalities to improve health delivery and equity using two key approaches: political economy analysis and participatory systems mapping. Political economy analyses evaluate barriers to collective action, including corruption, security, accountability, and incentives. Systems mapping evaluates community health challenges using a cross-sectoral approach, analyzing the impact of economic, environmental, transport, security, health system, and built environment factors. The mapping exercise draws on the experience and expertise of a diverse cohort of stakeholders, including government officials, municipal service providers, and civil society organizations. Results: Systems mapping and political economy analyses identified significant barriers for health care in migrant populations. In Makassar, migrants are unable to obtain the necessary card that entitles them to subsidized health services. This finding is being used to engage with municipal governments to mitigate the barriers that limit migrant enrollment in the public social health insurance scheme. In Indore, the project identified poor drainage of storm and wastewater in migrant settlements as a cause of poor health. Unsafe and inadequate infrastructure placed residents of these settlements at risk for both waterborne diseases and injuries. The program also evaluated the capacity of urban primary health centers serving migrant communities, identifying challenges related to their hours of service and shortages of health workers. In Da Nang, the systems mapping process has only recently begun, with the formal partnership launched in December 2019. Conclusion: This paper explores lessons learned from BHC’s systems mapping, political economy analyses, and stakeholder engagement approaches. The paper shares progress related to the health of migrants in informal settlements. Case studies feature barriers identified and mitigating steps, including governance actions, taken by local stakeholders in partner cities. The paper includes an update on ongoing progress from Indore and Makassar and experience from the first six months of program implementation from Da Nang.

Keywords: Migration, Urban Health, informal settlements, stakeholder engagement mapping

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