International Development Planning Review

Millennium development goals and urban informal settlements: unintended consequences

International Development Planning Review (2013), 35, (1), 0

Abstract

The Millennium Development Goal focusing on improving the lives of slum dwellers is arguably a significant and worthy global objective. Yet its intentions may have unintended consequences, as they may parallel and unwittingly justify state-sponsored evictions of slum dwellers and their settlements. This Viewpoint examines the intersections between the intentions of the MDG and the aesthetic values of some states as well as intersections with businesses interests. The implications of the quantification and target setting approach are considered, and the politics of the negative language of slum reduction is explored. This Viewpoint emphasises the multiple responses by states to the challenges of human settlements, including many progressive policies and plans, as witnessed in South Africa, but argues that the risks of unintended consequences require further research and consideration.

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Author details

Meth, Paula