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The Development Complex, rural economy and urban-spatial and economic development in Juba, South Sudan


  • Richard Grant


  • Daniel Thompson


Juba, the capital of South Sudan, is the fastest growing city in Africa, exhibiting the most rapid urban expansion and growth ever to take place in the region. Despite its explosive demographic and infrastructural expansion, the urban explosion has received virtually no attention from urban scholars. A grey literature on the city and its context is emerging but no assessment of this knowledge base has been undertaken. This article synthesizes reports from international governmental and non-governmental organizations, aerial and satellite images, and firsthand experiences in the city to develop an understanding of the interaction between the internationally-driven Development Complex (international organizations, foreign investment) in South Sudan as a whole, local development opportunities and the spatial organization of Juba. Our contribution takes stock of the interactions between international and local political forces in the boomtown, and discusses ways forward for urban planning, the international development and local business communities.

Suggested Citation

  • Richard Grant & Daniel Thompson, 2013. "The Development Complex, rural economy and urban-spatial and economic development in Juba, South Sudan," Local Economy, London South Bank University, vol. 28(2), pages 218-230, March.
  • Handle: RePEc:sae:loceco:v:28:y:2013:i:2:p:218-230

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