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Accepted Paper:

Migrants, brokers and the scramble for land in secondary cities  
Tom Goodfellow (University of Sheffield) Eshetayehu Kinfu Hakimu Sseviiri (Makerere University)

Paper long abstract:

In rapidly-growing secondary cities, land outside the urban core can come under huge pressure. These spaces are often outside formally regulated urban areas, but close enough to enable new settlers to access work opportunities and benefit from future rises in land value. Given the growing interest in these areas from many different actors, accessing land can involve a range of processes, institutions and actors. In this chapter we explore how migrants access land in industrializing secondary cities. In some cases, like Kasese and Hawassa, land brokers play crucial roles in facilitating access to land, along with landowning families and municipal authorities. These brokers often withhold important information in order to extract as much value from the sale as possible. These process can inflame existing ethnic conflicts.

The relationship between actors involved in facilitating peri-urban land varies significantly by context, depending on the land tenure regime, the nature of ethnic relations and the power of formal local leaders relative to informal/ traditional authorities. This chapter explores such questions as: what are the different relationships between migrants and brokers in fast-growing secondary cities? Can migrants themselves become brokers/gatekeepers in relation to land? What roles does local government play in facilitating migrants’ access to land, and how is this coloured by ethnic or religious tensions? Who benefits from rising land values in peri-urban areas and how does this inflame or reduce social conflicts in the city?

Panel Urba13
Migration and the making of urban futures in Africa
  Session 1 Thursday 1 June, 2023, -