Rethinking Urban Risk and Resettlement in the Global South

Edited by Cassidy Johnson, Garima Jain, and Allan Lavell

ISBN: 9781787358287

Publication: June 10, 2021

What is this?

Environmental changes have significant impacts on people’s lives and livelihoods, particularly the urban poor and those living in informal settlements. In an effort to reduce urban residents’ exposure to climate change and hazards such as natural disasters, resettlement programmes are becoming widespread across the Global South. While resettlement may reduce a region’s future climate-related disaster risk, it often increases poverty and vulnerability, and can be used as a reason to evict people from areas undergoing redevelopment.

A collaboration between the Bartlett Development Planning Unit at UCL, the Indian Institute for Human Settlements and the Latin American Social Science Faculty, Rethinking Urban Risk and Resettlement in the Global South collates the findings from 'Reducing Relocation Risks', a research project that studied urban areas across India, Uganda, Peru, Colombia and Mexico. The findings are augmented with chapters by researchers with many years of insight into resettlement, property rights and evictions, who offer cases from Monserrat, Cambodia, Philippines and elsewhere.

The contributors collectively argue that the processes for making and implementing decisions play a large part in determining whether outcomes are socially just, and examine various value systems and strategies adopted by individuals versus authorities. Considering perceptions of risk, the volume offers a unique way to think about economic assessments in the context of resettlement and draws parallels between different country contexts to compare fully urbanised areas with those experiencing urban growth. It also provides an opportunity to re-think how disaster risk management can better address the accumulation of urban risks through urban planning.

Cassidy Johnson is Professor of Urbanism and Disaster Risk Reduction at The Bartlett Development Planning Unit, UCL.

Garima Jain is Senior Consultant at the Indian Institute for Human Settlements, Bangalore.

Allan Lavell is a researcher at the Latin American Social Science Faculty based in San Jose, Costa Rica.

List of figures and tables
List of contributors

Cassidy Johnson, Allan Lavell and Garima Jain

Part 1: Framing the issues

1. Resettlement and relocation: an approach to understanding failure and guiding success
Allan Lavell

2. Resettling, re-enabling, the challenge of reconstructing a human habitat
Anne-Catherine Chardon

3. How do relocation decisions and implementation impact risk outcomes? Raising questions after learning from India
Garima Jain

Part 2: Understanding and interpreting risk

4. Risk as a subjective concept and its influence on decision-making
Cassidy Johnson, Garima Jain, Vineetha Nalla and José Delfin Cáceres-Martínez

5. A risk assessment framework for decision making that transcends economic valuation: understanding why people choose to stay in disaster-risk prone areas
Shuaib Lwasa, Amir Bazaz and Garima Jain

6. Resettlement in Montserrat after the volcanic crisis: A consensus on tolerable levels of risk?
Emily Wilkinson

Part 3: Protest and power: resistance to resettlement

7. The choice of perils: understanding resistance to resettlement for urban disaster risk reduction and climate change adaptation
Anthony Oliver-Smith

8. Resistance and resilience of the community of Belen, Iquitos, Peru, to resettlement
Angel Wilson Chávez-Eslava

Part 4: Land issues in resettlement

9. Land, property rights and risk
Colin Marx

10. Climate change, land and housing induced evictions: another round of accumulation through dispossession?
Yves Cabannes

11. Relocation, expulsion and risk in Phnom Penh, Cambodia
Giovanna Astolfo

12. Stay or leave? The dilemma of typhoon survivors in urban Tacloban, Philippines
Bill Flinn and Holly Schofield

Part 5: Natural resource and human occupation issues

13. Population resettlement in the Celestun River Biosphere Reserve: an opportunity for development?
Elizabeth Mansilla  

14. (Re)creating disasters: a case of post-disaster resettlements in Chennai
Garima Jain, Chandni Singh and Teja Malladi

15. Flood risk induced relocation in urban areas: case studies of Bwaise and Natete, Kampala
Teddy Kisembo  

Allan Lavell, Garima Jain and Cassidy Johnson

Appendix A
Typology of resettlement and relocation interventions

Appendix B
Risk-related resettlement and relocation in urban areas

Appendix C
Disaster and hazard-induced urban resettlement in Latin America

Appendix D
Re-imagining resettlement for risk reduction in urban India

Appendix E
Building better to build back better: understanding value, cost, and risk in Kampala, Uganda


Format: Open Access PDF

31 colour illustrations

Copyright: © 2021

ISBN: 9781787358287

Publication: June 10, 2021

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