International Development Planning Review

Beyond one-dimensional representation: challenges for neighbourhood planning in socially diverse urban settlements in Kisumu, Kenya

International Development Planning Review (2016), 38, (3), 275–295.

Abstract

Neighbourhood planning bodies have become an increasingly important vehicle for residents in informal settlements in the Global South to pursue their interests, and make claims from city authorities. This paper explores the contribution that the structured representation of subaltern groups in Neighbourhood Planning Associations (NPAs) has made to the inclusiveness of neighbourhood planning initiatives in Kisumu, Kenya. At the same time, we explore the limitations of the emphasis on numerical representation of different social categories in NPAs, including the ways in which the definition of social categories can reinforce existing power relations, the need to analyse and understand the relationship between planning claims and wider social and city-scale inequalities, and the danger of concealing identity based conflicts of interests and inequalities when engaged in consensus building planning methodologies. Building on this analysis we present some principles for a ‘diversity planning’ approach to neighbourhood level planning.

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Author details

Walker, Julian

Butcher, Stephanie

Walker, Julian

Butcher, Stephanie