Delivering Housing for All: Sessions from 2018 Urban Age Conference

14 June 2019

Rapid urbanisation raises huge questions for policymakers about housing new urban dwellers. Delivering Housing for All was one of the eight sessions at the Urban Age Conference, Developing Urban Futures, jointly organised by LSE Cities at the London School of Economics and the Alfred Herrhausen Gesellschaft that took place in Addis Ababa in November 2018.

The session explored national housing programmes in Mexico, South Africa, India, Pakistan and Singapore that have delivered mass housing in recent decades and asked what lessons can be drawn in terms of funding, planning and participatory design for African cities rushing to deliver much-needed shelter?


Gautam Bhan, Lead, Academics and Research, Indian Institute for Human Settlements, Bangalore.
Jose Castillo, Principal, a911, Mexico City.

Mass Housing Models

Elias Yitbarek Alemayehu, Architect and Urban Planner, EiABC, Addis Ababa University.

Community-Led Initiatives

Taibat Lawanson, Associate Professor of Urban Planning, University of Lagos

Panel Discussion

Delivering housing for all – Arif Hasan Belinda Yuen Elias Yitbarek Alemayehu Gautam Bhan Jose Castillo Joseph Muturi Kecia Rust Ricky Burdett Taibat Lawanson Tau Tavengwa



by David Satterthwaite | November 2018
Upgrading is a term given to government measures to improve housing and community-related infrastructure and services (such as piped water, sewers, drains, household waste collection and healthcare) to settlements considered (or officially designated as) ‘slums’ or illegally developed. Many include measures to provide inhabitants with secure tenure. Some also support improvements to housing. READ FULL ARTICLE


by AbdouMaliq Simone| November 2018
Every afternoon two dozen middle-aged men huddle at one of the several coffee shops in the underground mall of one of the most infamous vertical housing developments in Jakarta, Kalibata City. A pervasive air of melancholy is punctured only by passing security guards, or when everyone proceeds to the outdoor smoking area a few metres away. READ FULL ARTICLE


by Marco Di Nunzio | November 2018
We arrived late at the lekso (funeral) and everybody was there. The cemetery was on a small hill facing the blocks of the Summit condominium site on the eastern outskirts of Addis Ababa. Jonas1 helped me find our spot. There were hundreds of people. ‘Trust me,’ Jonas said, gesturing at the crowd, ‘this is not just because this old man was respected. It is because of Arat Kilo.’ Arat Kilo was among the oldest neighbourhoods in the heart of Addis. READ THE FULL ARTICLE


by Yeraswork Admassie | November 2018
Having followed a historical trajectory different from that of developed and some developing countries, Ethiopia’s urban growth has acquired a number of peculiar characteristics. One of these characteristics is the mixed distribution of its population, activities and services. READ FULL ARTICLE



These maps illustrate the horizontal growth of cities since the early 1990s. They also document the relationship between the city’s administrative boundary and the built-up area in which people live. The darker orange areas highlight the variety of ways cities have expanded since 1990 in response to diverse planning regimes, geographic constraints, competing economic drivers and traditions of building form and culture. As cities grow, governing them becomes more complex and less efficient when their administrations have limited power and where urban footprints extend beyond administrative boundaries.


Behind the basic parameters that define how cities perform lie very different patterns of urban development, with diverse spatial, social and economic characteristics. In this city data matrix, LSE Cities has assembled information from a range of official sources for nine selected cities, revealing their social, governance, planning, transport and environmental patterns.