Thursday, 9 February 2012

Slums and the urban drawbridge

As part of our 'Cities in Africa' series, my report on urban land rights (plus my coleagues interview with Governor Fashola of Lagos). Further proof that slums aren't spontaneous happenings, but result from very clear institutionalized exclusion. De Soto accurately noted this, although he has become a bit of a hate figure on the left. His concept of property rights unleashing growth and resuscitating 'dead capital' is somewhat mechanical, but he was a pioneer and pioneers should be allowed some room. Like Marx. He said some silly stuff, about capitalists burying themselves when in fact they have never looked in redder health.