“This report is mainly concerned with the shelter conditions of the majority of the urban poor. It is about how the poor struggle to survive within urban areas, mainly through informal shelter and informal income-generation strategies, and about the inadequacy of both public and market responses to the plight of the urban poor. But the report is also about hope, about building on the foundations of the urban poor’s survival strategies and about what needs to be done by both the public and non-governmental sectors.
As this report emphasizes, slums are a manifestation of the two main challenges facing human settlements viz., rapid urbanization and the urbanization of poverty. This report explores both the negative and positive aspects of slums.
Many past responses to the problem of urban slums have been based on the erroneous belief that provision of improved housing and related services (through slum upgrading) and physical eradication of slums will, on their own, solve the slum problem. Solutions based on this premise have failed to address the main underlying causes of slums, of which poverty is the most significant.
The report therefore emphasizes the need for future policies to support the livelihoods of the urban poor by enabling urban informal-sector activities to flourish and develop, by linking low-income housing development to income generation, and by ensuring easy geographical access to jobs through pro-poor transport and more appropriate location of low- income settlements. Slum policies should in fact be integrated within broader, people-focused urban poverty reduction policies that address the various dimensions of poverty.”
(345 Pages, 2.39 MB)