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Latin American Urban Development into the 21st Century Towards a Renewed Perspective on the City

  • Dennis Rodgers
  • Jo Beall
  • Ravi Kanbur

This paper argues for a more systemic engagement with Latin American cities, contending it is necessary to reconsider their unity in order to nuance the ‘fractured cities’ perspective that has widely come to epitomise the contemporary urban moment in the region. It begins by offering an overview of regional urban development trends, before exploring how the underlying imaginary of the city has critically shifted over the past half century. Focusing in particular on the way that slums and shantytowns have been conceived, it traces how the predominant conception of the Latin American city moved from a notion of unity to a perception of fragmentation, highlighting how this had critically negative ramifications for urban development agendas, and concludes with a call for a renewed vision of Latin American urban life.

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Paper provided by World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER) in its series Working Paper Series with number UNU-WIDER Working Paper WP2011/05.

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Length: 24 pages
Date of creation: 2011
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:unu:wpaper:wp2011-05
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  1. Chau, Nancy H. & Zhang, Weiwen, 2011. "Harnessing the Forces of Urban Expansion - The Public Economics of Farmland Development Allowance," Discussion Papers 99416, University of Bonn, Center for Development Research (ZEF).
  2. J. E. Stiglitz, 1999. "Introduction," Economic Notes, Banca Monte dei Paschi di Siena SpA, vol. 28(3), pages 249-254, November.
  3. Bradley J. Rickard & Jura Liaukonyte & Harry M. Kaiser & Timothy J. Richards, 2011. "Consumer Response to Commodity-Specific and Broad-Based Promotion Programs for Fruits and Vegetables," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 93(5), pages 1312-1327.
  4. Fajnzylber, Pablo & Lederman, Daniel & Loayza, Norman, 2002. "Inequality and Violent Crime," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 45(1), pages 1-40, April.
  5. Gareth A. Jones & Maria Moreno‐Carranco, 2007. "Megaprojects," City, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 11(2), pages 144-164, July.
  6. Moser, Caroline O.N. & McIlwaine, Cathy, 2006. "Latin American Urban Violence as a Development Concern: Towards a Framework for Violence Reduction," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 34(1), pages 89-112, January.
  7. Moser, Caroline O. N., 1978. "Informal sector or petty commodity production: Dualism or dependence in urban development?," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 6(9-10), pages 1041-1064.
  8. Alan Gilbert, 2007. "The Return of the Slum: Does Language Matter?," International Journal of Urban and Regional Research, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 31(4), pages 697-713, December.
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