Civil society participation in urban governance in Africa: supporting CSOs’ political voice for a transformation of citizen–state relations

Gutheil, Lena
Externe Publikationen (2022)

Policy Brief 2022 05, 14.07.2022S (SWP, IDOS, IfW)

DOI: https://doi.org/10.18449/2022MTA-PB05
Volltext/Full text

Urbanisation offers great potential for Africa’s economic and social development: citizens earn twice as much in large cities compared to rural areas, and young urbanites receive on average between 2.5 and 4 years more education than their rural  counterparts. At the same time, the rapid rise of the urban population is putting a strain on Africa’s cities. While on average, city dwellers have better access to services than their rural counterparts, more than half of all citizens in sub-Saharan  African metropolises live in informal settlements without adequate access to basic infrastructure. Citizens have long demanded participation in urban governance that goes beyond elections in order to voice their concerns. Although participatory  processes have become increasingly evident in many African countries in some cities and neighbourhoods, they are still far from being institutionalised at scale. This policy brief asks why participatory approaches have not been successful thus far and analyses the challenges regarding a political mobilisation of civil society organisations (CSOs), which often face weak and fragmented state institutions. It argues that participatory processes need to be thoroughly embedded in politics in order to move beyond  particularistic gains towards a structural improvement of relations between citizens, CSOs, and local governments.

Über die Autorin

Gutheil, Lena

Ethnologie

Weitere Expert*innen zu diesem Thema

Asimeng, Emmanuel Theodore

Stadtplanung, Nachhaltigkeit 

Breuer, Anita

Politikwissenschaftlerin 

Dick, Eva

Soziologin und Raumplanerin 

El-Haddad, Amirah

Ökonomie 

Gronen, Maria Elisabeth

Sozialwissenschaften 

Hadank-Rauch, Rebecca

Umwelt- und Entwicklungswissenschaften 

Haldenwang, Christian von

Politikwissenschaftler 

Herrfahrdt-Pähle, Elke

Volkswirtin 

Houdret, Annabelle

Politikwissenschaftlerin 

Jauregui Fung, Franco

Architektur, Urbane Ballungsräume 

Leininger, Julia

Politikwissenschaftlerin 

Morare, Ditebogo Modiegi

Politikwissenschaften 

Roll, Michael

Soziologie 

Schoderer, Mirja

Umweltwissenschaftlerin 

Subramanian, Saravanan

Geographie 

Wehrmann, Dorothea

Soziologie 

Zumegen, Lisa

Urbane Transformation