Environment & Urbanization

World leading environmental and urban studies journal
Current issue: Sanitation and drainage in cities

Current issue: Sanitation and drainage in cities

In much of Africa and Asia, provision for sanitation and drainage in urban areas has improved little. In many, it has got worse as today, a higher proportion of residents lack provision than in 1990 or 2000. This issue of Environment and Urbanization has many papers showing new approaches. They include innovations in Blantyre (Malawi), Chinhoyi (Zimbabwe), Dar es Salaam (Tanzania) and Kitwe (Zambia) on matching needs with what can be afforded and working with local government.  A paper on Chinhoyi reports on community-led mapping and enumeration of sanitation to inform a city-wide sanitation strategy while a paper on Mumbai (India) shows the scale and reach of community toilets and a paper on Cap Haitien (Haiti) reviews the experience with container-based toilets. Further papers look at: how poorly the sanitation needs of adolescent girls are met; violence, gender and water and sanitation; scoring cities in India for sanitation and cities in China for health and hygiene; building urban resilience to climate change; the impact of participatory budgeting in 20 cities; displacement in Ahmedabad; land contestation in Karachi; rural-urban interlinkages in China; sustainability and neoliberal urban restructuring; and post-disaster reconstruction in Llico, Chile.


Book notes

This report describes a finance facility that provides seed capital to support community-led upgrading in informal settlements in South Africa. Called Masikhase – the Community Upgrading Finance Facility (CUFF) – this shows what communities can do with modest financial support. It also shows how their initiatives can catalyse partnerships with local governments so that they learn to work together – and with additional support drawn from local government.

This paper examines the vulnerability of migrant workers in the informal sector in three Indian cities (Kochi, Surat, and Mumbai), specifically in terms of livelihoods, climate change and health inequities. A key assumption is that vulnerability to climate change and infectious diseases is closely embedded within the wider political economy of many migrant workers’ day-to-day livelihood struggles. Using a mixed methodology, data from 50 migrants in each of the three cities were collected using a semi-structured interview schedule. 

Latest blogs

In India, slum and pavement dwellers' organisations have designed and managed a programme of community toilets and washing facilities that are used by hundreds of thousands of households. Guest blogger Sheela Patel describes how this was achieved.
Ahead of the Financing for Development conference in Addis Ababa, David Satterthwaite highlights the disconnect that exists between the commitments made by national governments at international conferences and finance available for the (mostly local) institutions that can meet them.
Community involvement in improving housing for low income families in Asian cities is changing approaches to funding – and delivering impressive results as well.

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