Urban-rural migration, movement and livelihoods revisited in a context of crisis
Date and Start Time 30 June, 2017 at 14:00
The panel aims at identifying and discussing the features of urban-rural migration and movement, the factors of attraction involved, migratory and livelihood dynamics and new strategies and features of the settlements, towns and cities.
While the debate on the inevitability of explosive urbanisation in Africa appears to be over, new dynamics involving both the private and government enterprises in the rural areas gradually pull, voluntarily and involuntarily, the urban dwellers and rural migrants to new forms of urban settlement in and out of the main cities. The panel aims at identifying and discussing the features and trends of such movement and settlement in diverse African contexts, particularly in a global setting of economic crisis, new opportunities beyond the major cities, exuberant projects of urban modernisation, and more expressive international migratory flows. How attractive are rural opportunities in agriculture, mining, border trade or tourism projects to the poor and vulnerable in the cities? How are new urban strategies and sociabilities resulting from urban expansion of new modern projects? How are these opportunities and strategies combined in rural-urban livelihoods? How does internal migration and movement relate and combine with the strategies linked to international migration? The panel aims at bringing to the fore the possible comparisons between the African tendencies and those of other world contexts, as well as comparing the African cases within their own specificities. Moreover, it will be an opportunity to re-activate the urban-rural discussion in a renewed perspective.
This panel is closed to new paper proposals.
New urbanism in Africa - urban-to-rural migration in Angola and Mozambique and its implications
New dynamics in the rural areas gradually attract urban dwellers and rural migrants to new forms of settlement. The paper aims at identifying and discussing the features of these trends, particularly in a setting of economic crisis and new opportunities in Angola and Mozambique.
African mobility is an important aspect of urbanisation patterns and conditions (Potts, 2010; Simone, 2011). While the outstanding urbanisation and the growth of main cities is worldwide a central concern today, in many contemporary African cases new dynamics involving both the private and government enterprises in the rural areas gradually attract, voluntarily and involuntarily, urban dwellers and rural migrants to new forms of settlement (Agergaard, Fold, & Gough, 2009; D. F. Bryceson, 2011; D. Bryceson & MacKinnon, 2012; Dobler, 2009). Through migration, the new residents of these new towns become not just mere demographic figures producing urban growth but, more importantly, act as active creators of new urbanism. The paper aims at identifying and discussing the features of these trends in African contexts, particularly in a setting of economic crisis and new opportunities beyond the major cities in Angola and Mozambique. It focuses on new opportunities in agriculture, extractive industries, border trade or tourism projects that concur to the creation of new towns and cities or the expansion of smaller agglomerates. Based on data collected in both countries, the analysis aims to provide insight on the role and agency of urban dwellers in creating these new types of urbanism. Moreover, it brings to the discussion questions about the main issues this type of urbanism raises regarding planning, governing and management of cities and towns and the challenges that both planners and dwellers have to face.
A study of Urban-Rural Migration in Southern Nigeria: Patterns and Evolution
Urban rural migration has been driven in recent times by the spate of crime and high cost of living in urban areas across Nigeria. Specifically, this paper explores the patterns of urban-rural migration
The recurrent urban displacement across the country has aroused a sense of how the phenomenon of contesting the city has received inadequate scholarly attention. Urban rural migration has been driven in recent times by the spate of crime and high cost of living in urban areas across Nigeria. Specifically, this paper explores the patterns of urban-rural migration by responding to these questions: What is the trend of urban-rural migration in Southern Nigeria? Why are people being forced to relocate to the rural areas? What opportunities in rural areas determine urban-rural migration? Using synthesised primary and secondary sources, this paper is a case study of state's leanings toward urban displacement. Nigeria's urban bias scenario has been revealed by available data on how over 2 million people lost their homes and land to compulsory land acquisitions as at 2006, the eviction of more than a million people in Port Harcourt by oil companies, as well as the eviction of more than 500,000 people in Abuja since 2003 which affected people that relocated to rural areas in Southern Nigeria. This paper argues that due to the problems associated with land and development, both the rising cost of living in the urban areas and the incremental wave of urban crimes occasioned by urbanization remain the dominant motivations for movements of people to rural areas which are relatively safer than the cities which attract job seekers and foreign investors.
Next stop - Gondar, Ethiopia
The neighborhoods of would-be rural immigrants to Israel, stranded for years in cities due to bureaucratic issues, become a discourse on boundaries and temporariness. This is an anthropological view of the “new urban” through the dialogue between transient and permanent residents, village and town.
Gondar and Addis Ababa have been gathering places for immigrants to Israel since 1991. These are rural people who found themselves stuck in cities while waiting to move on become part of the "new urban." Today, there are people who have been waiting for 18 years, and they have changed the fabric of urban neighborhoods, which have become temporary homes for rural immigrants-to-be. While not physically separated, these neighborhoods are the locus of an invisible discourse on boundaries and temporariness. Using an anthropological perspective, my lecture will focus on the creation of transit stations in cities, the dialogue between the transient would-be immigrants and the local population, and the ensuing economic, religious, and interpersonal issues.
I will focus on the extended waiting and explore the interaction that is established over the many years between the waiting people and the locals. I will also describe how the waiting affects the daily life of the locals, and the influence of overseas organizations and people that had immigrated to Israel and come back to visit in Gondar. The lecture is based on nine years of fieldwork in Ethiopia and Israel.
Rural development, impacts of Infrastructure on agriculture-landuse in waterfront countries of ECOWAS
This paper discussing the causes of urban-to rural migration in coastal countries of ECOWAS, and suggest strategy with action plans to develop the infrastructure in rural areas with controlling this extreme movements in this model of developing countries synchronizing with planning resettlement.
2011 was a balance year presented in equality of rural and urban population around world, in Africa there are only 3 megacities but most cities\urban areas are far less than rural. Poor people are always targeting cities to enhance their economic life, and almost African countries focus in develop rural areas to minimize the real cost of poverty. The waterfront countries in ECOWAS experienced series of crisis affecting in the normal growth rate of urban areas, this research came to discuss the both forces of environmental refugees and mass-back migration to rural areas after injured by financial crisis. Rural reshaped as consequences of rapid urbanization not only in rural nearby cities, but also that far and have started in developing some essential infrastructure development such as accessing water and sanitation services. The development of infrastructure became disaster within lake of public expenditure of thus countries, private sector and international firms started to participate in this issue and there are many models to solve this problem. Consolidating factors affecting allocation of food industrial organizations on-site areas as food is part of urban-rural growth needs especially in this region that experienced both food crisis and environmental refugees.
Ethnic-Based Associations aAnd The the Politics Of of Resource Allocation In in Urban Africa
Urban based ethnic associations in Africa serve as a platform for bringing various actors together and also facilitate the consolidation of resources. However, limited knowledge exist on the conduct of the relationships between associations, and also with public institutions.
Urban ethnic-based associations in Africa are generally known for supporting their members to adjust to life in the cities. The various ethnic and cultural associations they belong to provide members with critical information on opportunities available in the cities, and also on how to access them. They serve as a platform for bringing various actors together and also facilitate the consolidation of resources, which in turn maximize the value of individual activities and earnings in the urban centres. In doing all these, urban-based ethnic associations functionally replace the extended family units within whose tradition of socio-cooperation the new entrants into the cities were brought up. This no doubt has implications for civil society and its engagement with urban processes. In this regard, the importance of urban ethnic-based associations as agents for political mobilisation is not contested. Associational ethnicity continues to be active in Africa's urban areas, however, questions about how these associational forms have evolved, and how they work, as important as they are for conducting the mapping and assessment of the capacities of contemporary African cities, have not received adequate scholarly attention. Thus, the following questions guide the study of urban ethnic associations and politics of resource allocation in urban Africa: What practices are entailed? What is the glue that cements real collaboration beyond ethnic ties? While we know, for instance, that ethnic and cultural associations shape urban politics, provide platforms for competition and struggle for space, opportunities and resources, limited knowledge exist on the conduct of the relationships between associations, and also with public institutions.
Spatial politics and gendered strategies for urban livelihoods: Women traders' engagement with institutions in central Lagos market
Contrary to the popular construction of Lagos markets as female spaces, women traders find that they have to devise strategies of resistance, pushing the boundaries of legality to secure their livelihoods against the oppressive, male-controlled structures of market and government authorities.
Markets in Lagos, as in other parts of Yorubaland, are discursively constructed as spaces where women are in charge, perhaps, based on their numbers (Surkadasa, 1973; Mba, 1987). However, my research on the spatial relationships between women traders, the state government and market institutions at the Oke Arin market in central Lagos points to women's subordination and reflects Massey's (1994) concept of gendered spaces. Massey (1994) explains that spaces are in themselves gendered and that they also reflect and affect how gender is constructed and enforced in a context. Although women historically held traditional powers to run markets in Lagos, the 1949 Colonial Ordinance undermined these and put in "male market- masters employed by municipal bodies to administer markets" (Mba, 1987:248). Thus, based on a study sample of 80 women traders, I argue that women sometimes find that the only weapon they have left is resistance and other so- called 'weapons of the weak' (Scott, 1985). The interactions in Oke Arin suggest that the market space is in constant contestation, being shaped and controlled through gendered power struggles. The current 'internal structures of domination and subordination' (Massey, 1994:154) are evident in the property ownership structure; governance and access to facilities in Oke Arin. In response to spatial politics and the dominating structures of market and government authorities, women traders devise strategies of resistance, sometimes pushing the boundaries of legality to secure their livelihoods.
Changing landscapes: land, mobility and rural-urban livelihoods in Huambo, Angola
The aim of this paper is to explore the ways in which people in Huambo – a rural region of Angola, which was devastated by decades of war – reconcile a combination of rural and urban livelihoods with past and ongoing internal processes of migration and return.
Land and agriculture are currently key foci of development and post-war reconstruction programmes in the Huambo region of Angola. Research in this region has revealed the intricacies of changes in agricultural practice (including decreasing land quality and tensions involved in land distribution), alongside the economic and social importance of the land, which is used to define both agricultural fields and a sense of belonging to a territory, people and history. Internal and international migration in attempts to escape the war are an intrinsic part of the history of the region, as is the continued movement between villages and towns. This paper will explore some of the findings from our preliminary research on the relationship between land, mobility and livelihoods in Huambo. Within this relationship, it will focus more specifically on the ongoing connections between rural and urban social and material landscapes, on internal processes of migration and return, and on the combination of rural and urban livelihoods. We will explore the links between these connections and issues of land use and distribution which, after a long period of abandonment of land due to the war, produce new, complex relationships and opportunities in a changing social landscape.
This panel is closed to new paper proposals.