Who Will Plan Africa's Cities

Author: 

Vanessa Watson and Babatunde Agbola

Publication date: 

Sunday, 1 September 2013

Type: 

  • Research paper

Producer: 

External to ACUI

Project theme: 

Document: 

Africa’s cities are growing – and changing – rapidly. Without appropriate planning, they will become increasingly chaotic, inefficient and unsustainable. In many countries, planning legislation dates back to the colonial era. It is ill-equipped to deal with contemporary urban problems. A shortage of urban planning and management professionals trained to respond to urban complexity with progressive pro-poor approaches exacerbates urban dysfunction.

As planning educators seek to train students for employment within the existing system, the urban and rural planning curricula of many planning schools are as outdated as planning legislation. Some African countries have no planning school. The reform and revitalisation of planning education – and legislation – could contribute significantly to sustainable and more equitable urban development in sub-Saharan Africa.