Accepted paper:

Translocal labour migrants and transient settlements in urbanizing Naivasha, Kenya


Gerda Kuiper (University of Cologne)

Paper short abstract:

This paper will provide a case study of workers' settlements in an urbanizing agro-industrial hub in Kenya. Translocal practices of migrant workers have shaped space in transient residential areas in Naivasha.

Paper long abstract:

In the past four decades, the area around Lake Naivasha in Kenya rapidly transformed from a rural cattle-ranching area into an agro-industrial centre, implicated within global value chains. The industry attracted ten thousands of labour migrants from all over Kenya. These migrants remain strongly connected to their - mostly rural - region of origin: they are grounded in Naivasha for the time-being but are ultimately 'on the move'. This paper looks into the ways in which these translocal migrants carved out space for themselves in the rapidly expanding residential areas around the lake. The paper will elaborate on residents' place-making strategies - shaped by intersections of class, ethnicity and gender - which together with structural forces made these settlements into 'transient spaces'.

panel P123
The urban and the rural in biographical constructions of urban African middle classes