Ghana is one of Africa’s most rapidly urbanising countries. In the past three decades, the number of city dwellers has risen from four million to 14 million; more than 5.5 million live in slums.
Urban growth exerts intense pressure on central and municipal government to provide infrastructure, affordable housing, public services and jobs. But the success of such strategies depends on an informed appraisal of the political dynamics of urban neighbourhoods.
Informal settlements will play an increasingly important role in Ghanaian politics. Those seeking to understand the voting intentions of slum-dwellers ahead of Ghana’s elections in November 2016 should consider the ways that “hidden” informal networks interact with formal politics, and how citizens hold their leaders to account in this environment.
Hear Dr Jeffrey Paller talk about the social and political networks that really govern urban Ghana. This event will mark the launch of a new Counterpoint publication.