Development challenges for African cities: populations, economies, cultures




  • Cecilia Pennacini, Department of Culture, Politics and Society, University of Turin, Centre for African Studies (CSA).


  • Bill Freund, Professor at the KwaZulu-Natal University, Durban, South Africa
  • Laurent Fourchard, Researcher, National Foundation of Political Sciences, Bordeaux, France
  • Sophie Oldfield, Department of Environmental and Geographical Sciences, Cape Town University, South Africa
  • Federico Cresti, Chairman, Catania University, Association of African Studies in Italy (ASAI), Italy

In the last decades Africa has been characterized by a fast-growing urbanization and today some of the metropolises of the continent are among the largest in the world. They are multiethnic megalopolises in the middle of a both material and symbolic stream on a global scale, places of exchange – economical, migratory and cultural – that unrelentingly transform both the space and the urban social pattern. Meanwhile, new problems concerning the governance, the space and public goods management have been highlighted on the agenda by this rapid urbanization. In other words, African cities are places of transformations and conflicts that significantly reflect the wider processes that run over the continent. The topic unavoidably challenges the common idea of Africa, suggesting to abandon any negative stereotype and reductionist visions in order to embrace the complexity and to explore the opportunities – but also the limits and contradictions- of a continent which is destined to be more and more instrumental in the globalized world.

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Location: Sala degli Svizzeri - Palazzo Chiablese Date: October 15, 2015 Time: 6:30 pm - 7:30 pm