Tuesday, August 7, 2012

[EQ] Researching the Urban Dilemma: Urbanization, Poverty and Violence

Researching the Urban Dilemma: Urbanization, Poverty and Violence

Governance, Security, and Justice

Canada’s International Development Research Centre (IDRC) 2012

Available online PDF [118p.] at: http://bit.ly/Rn08W2

“…..Today’s cities are centres of multi-layered violence. Criminal and organized violence, associated with the drug trade in some countries have become entwined with national politics. Gangs and militias have come to substitute for public authority, offering some protection to communities, but often at great cost. Social violence, including violence within the household, is also a significant problem, particularly for vulnerable youth and women living in these environments….”

“….Towards this end, the study set out to achieve four objectives:


1. Document what is known about the connections between violence, inequalities and poverty in urban centres and assess the strength of the knowledge base. Particular focus was given to assessing evidence from Latin America and the Caribbean, Sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia;

2. Describe the state of theory on violence, urbanization and poverty reduction, and assess the extent to which they interact, and whether emerging evidence actually informs theoretical debates and assumptions guiding work in these fields;

3. Identify key evidence gaps that require further investigation; and

4. Map out key actors (researchers and research organizations) that are producing knowledge on these issues.

The outcome is a study that promotes an integrated and comprehensive approach to tackling the challenges posed by rapid urbanization, escalating violence, and increased poverty and inequalities…

Table of Contents

Executive Summary


Report Methodology

Section 1: Research and Methods

Section 2: Concepts and Theories

i. Defining the “urban”

ii. Defining urban violence

iii. Defining the urban poor

Section 3: Measuring the Impacts

i. Death and victimization in the city

ii. Displacement to and from the city

iii. Social capital and cohesion in the city

iv. Socio-economic welfare in the city

v. Erosion of urban governance in the city

Section 4: Risks and Drivers

i. Urbanization and population growth

ii. Urban population density

iii. Urban poverty and inequality

iv. Urban youth and unemployment

v. Failures in urban governance

Section 5: Resilience and Resistance

Section 6: What Works and Why

i. Pacification and community policing

ii. Enhancing protection and reducing risks facing youth

iii. Promoting social capital and urban cohesion

iv. Urban renewal for security

v. Slum upgrading and urban safety

vi. Urban governance for security

Concluding Reflections

Annex 1: Evidence Gaps and Emerging Questions

Annex 2: Moving From Theory to Practice: A Review of Selected Examples

Annex 3: List of Key Informants

Annex 4: Selected Networks and Internet Resources

Annex 5: Bibliography


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