Tackling Infrastructure: Lessons from Creative Solutions of the Urban Poor in Fragile and Marginal Contexts

Project status


This project takes the case of Hoima, a fragile and marginal city located in western Uganda, to unearth ways through which the urban poor navigate and negotiate the absence and inadequacy of formal technical infrastructure; and how they put together a semblance of viable life through modest, low-cost, small-scale and sometimes improvised interventions in their everyday lives for survival. Interest in this project stems, in part, from urban studies in the Global South that have studied large/central cities to reveal how diverse populations manage to operate successfully (albeit with constraints and limitations), despite limits on formal institutions of governance and service delivery. This project will draw from a smaller/marginal city in a low-income country in sub-Saharan Africa where violent conflict, extreme poverty, infrastructure devastation and endemic disease might constitute ‘the norm’, thus providing lessons for 'tackling infrastructure' and realising 'sustainable economies and societies'.

Research team

Mr Prince Guma, British Institute in Eastern Africa; Dr Freda Nkirote M'mbogori, British Institute in Eastern Africa

Sign up to our email newsletters