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Urbanisation of Poverty – Na Who Cause Am?

19 Pages Posted: 20 Apr 2009  

Franklin Obeng-Odoom

University of Technology, Sydney

Date Written: 2009


The migration of the rural poor to urban areas is widely believed to be the cause of "urbanisation of poverty". This paper acquits the rural poor of any "wrong doing". Using the traditional urban economics concept of agglomeration economies, we find that - (1) The failure to properly harness the sources of urban productivity; (2) The failure to transform urban economic growth to development and; (3) Free market democracy typified by excessive privatisations and world city syndrome – better explain the urbanisation of poverty. Based on these findings, an integrated integrating approach is recommended for fighting the growing menace of urban poverty.

Keywords: urban, poverty, governance, population, Africa

JEL Classification: R00

Suggested Citation

Obeng-Odoom, Franklin, Urbanisation of Poverty – Na Who Cause Am? (2009). Available at SSRN: or

Franklin Obeng-Odoom (Contact Author)

University of Technology, Sydney ( email )

University of Sydney
Sydney, NC

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