Local responses to globalization and peripheralization in Luanda, Angola

Paul Jenkins, Paul Robson, Allan Cain

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    22 Citations (Scopus)


    This paper questions the likely benefits of globalization for Luanda by considering how global political and economic forces affect the lives of its 3.4 million inhabitants. Most live in informal, self-constructed settlements which lack basic infrastructure and services. Most receive little benefit from the nation's oil and diamond exports, while many have had their livelihoods eroded by the collapse of the local economy and the contraction of the state. The paper also describes how the city has always been shaped by external forces - as a port serving the slave trade or colonial export agriculture - and what the role of external forces has been in creating and perpetuating the long-running civil war. International organizations have criticized the state for not creating basic conditions of development but in fact rarely provide funds to help it do so. The key globalization issue for Luanda (and Angola) is not how to ensure a more effective trickle-down of benefits from exportled growth, but how more people can be productively engaged in the development process. In relation to this, the paper describes the growing role of civil society within Luanda and how, with appropriate support, this can help achieve the broader development objective.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)115-127
    Number of pages13
    JournalEnvironment and Urbanization
    Issue number1
    Publication statusPublished - 2002


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