Well-planned urban green landscapes, including wildscapes and green spaces, have the potential to contribute to climate change adaptation and mitigation. Yet for cities in low-income countries, the value of these urban landscapes in climate change response strategies is often disregarded and remains largely unexploited and unaccounted for. This paper discusses the potential role of urban green landscapes as a “soft engineering” climate change response strategy, and calls for the pursuance of management practices that preserve and promote the use of these urban spaces.

Cities are blamed for the majority of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. So too are more affluent, highly urbanized countries. If all production- and consumption-based emissions that result from lifestyle and purchasing habits are included, urban residents and their associated affluence likely account for more than 80 per cent of the world’s GHG emissions. Attribution of GHG emissions should be refined. Apportioning responsibility can be misguided, as recent literature demonstrates that residents of denser city centres can emit half the GHG emissions of their suburban neighbours.

This paper reviews the literature on health in the informal settlements (and “slums”) that now house a substantial proportion of the urban population in Africa, Asia and Latin America. Although this highlights some important gaps in research, available studies do suggest that urban health inequalities usually begin at birth, are reproduced over a lifetime (often reinforced by undernutrition), and may be recreated through vulnerabilities to climate change and a “double burden” of communicable and non-communicable diseases.

“Don’t teach us what is sanitation and hygiene.” This quote from Maqbul, a middle-aged male resident in Modher Bosti, a slum in Dhaka city, summed up the frustration of many people living in urban poverty to ongoing sanitation and hygiene programmes. In the light of their experiences, such programmes provide “inappropriate sanitation”, or demand personal investments in situations of highly insecure tenure, and/or teach “hygiene practices” that relate neither to local beliefs nor to the ground realities of a complex urban poverty.

This paper highlights the role of community prevention in improving overall health and in supporting health equity. By addressing the underlying causes of illness and injury, community prevention efforts can prevent illness and injury before they occur. The paper presents three frameworks that support quality community prevention efforts.

This paper seeks to map the extent to which civil society actors champion environmental justice in an industrial risk society. It examines the role of civil society actors in Durban, KwaZulu-Natal, in being able to perceive industrial risk and push local concerns in development processes. The paper draws on qualitative and empirical research for a local case study in Merebank, South Durban, to explore how civil society engaged to organize and respond to local groundwater contamination caused by the German multinational Bayer, and also influence construction of knowledge around risk.

This paper explores local environmental problems at both the household and neighbourhood levels in Chittagong, based on a broad spectrum household survey. The survey shows that households in poor areas are very exposed to localized environmental problems and thus necessarily develop a wide range of coping strategies around the living space. Yet poorer households are less likely to express their concerns about neighbourhood environmental issues, despite

Much of São Paulo’s urban expansion is driven by the development of informal settlements on its periphery, which includes the catchment areas that provide important environmental services such as open space and catchments for

This is the fourth in a series of papers chronicling the negotiations over plans to redevelop Dharavi, Mumbai’s vast informal settlement. It also describes current plans to redevelop land beside Mumbai’s international airport, where more than 85,000 households live on a 110-hectare (275 acres) site. In both these settlements, each with populations equivalent to a sizeable city, the government plans appear to be driven more by an intent to support commercial
developments than to address the needs of their residents.

For several decades, a diverse literature has claimed that urban agriculture has the potential for hunger and poverty alleviation. This article reviews empirical data from equatorial Africa that touch on this assertion, updating the work on the subject published in the mid-1990s. Research, largely from East Africa but also including Cameroon in West Central Africa, appearing in several recent and currently emerging publications is assessed and compared. The article