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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:In the shadow of the city: Africa's urban poor in opposition strongholds
Author:Resnick, DanielleISNI
Year:2011
Periodical:Journal of Modern African Studies (ISSN 0022-278X)
Volume:49
Issue:1
Pages:141-166
Language:English
Geographic term:Zambia
Subjects:urban poverty
opposition parties
central-local government relations
Abstract:Sub-Saharan Africa is the fastest urbanizing region of the world. This demographic transformation has occurred in concert with two other trends in the region, nascent democratization and stalled decentralization. Using the case of Lusaka, Zambia, this study argues that in the context of multiparty competition and limited fiscal decentralization, the challenges posed by rapid urbanization are exacerbated for the urban poor living in cities controlled by opposition parties. Semi-structured interviews conducted with local political actors are combined with a survey of 200 informal sector workers in Lusaka. This data reveals the tactics employed by the central government to weaken the popularity of the opposition in Lusaka and shows that from the viewpoint of the urban poor, such tactics ultimately prove counterproductive. The presence of similar dynamics in other African cities has important implications for aid modalities, such as budget support, that are currently used by international donors to fund development projects, including those in the urban sector. Bibliogr., notes, ref., sum. [Journal abstract]
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